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Dragons At Crumbling Castle
And Other Tales
Terry Pratchett
Illustrated by Mark Beech

Doubleday (Random House Childrens Books)
11 September 2014/ ISBN 9780857534378
Children / Humor / Fantasy / ages 9 - 12 Years

Reviewed by Rachel A Hyde


This is a book of short stories written by a younger Terry Pratchett while he was a junior reporter for the Bucks Free Press. He wrote them during the period 1965-73 for younger readers, and here they are in book form. Here you can read about the origins of the Carpet People, and see prototypes for many other characters and events in his later books. Oh and it is a fun read for children too, if they can pry it away from the adult fans in the household. Discover what happens when a bus goes back in time, an overly quiet village decides to attract some tourists, Santa gets a job at the zoo and one of King Arthur’s more junior knights goes on a quest. There are two tales of the Carpet People, and of some other tiny folk living on a speck of floating dust. While reading the stories it is best to remember that they were written over forty years ago and things were rather different then. Women do not feature much in them to start with, although there is nothing sexist, racist or anything else that ends in ist; think of it all as social history, albeit very entertaining social history. It is even illustrated, and I liked the different sized print and even the odd black page when the lights go out. It makes for a good introduction for children to the works of this talented writer, and there is even a page at the back showing what to read if you fancy tales about witches, tiny folk, talking animals or adventures. In fact, what’s not to like?

Reviewed 2014