A delightfully funny, fantastically inventive collection of twenty newly unearthed short stories by Sir Terry Pratchett, the award-winning and bestselling author of the phenomenally successful Discworld fantasy series. This special trove–featuring charming woodcut illustrations–is a must-have for Pratchett fans of all ages and includes a foreword by Neil Gaiman.The audiobook is narrated by a stunning cast that includes David Tennant, Claire Foy, Paterson Joseph, Indira Varma, and more!
These rediscovered tales were written by Terry Pratchett under a pseudonym for British newspapers during the 1970s and 1980s. The stories have never been attributed to him until now, and might never have been found–were it not for the efforts of a few dedicated fans.
As Neil Gaiman writes in his introduction, “through all of these stories we watch young Terry Pratchett becoming Terry Pratchett.” Though none of the short works are set in the Discworld, all are infused with Pratchett’s trademark wit, satirical wisdom, and brilliant imagination, hinting at the magical universe he would go on to create.
Meet Og the inventor, the first caveman to cultivate fire, as he discovers the highs and lows of progress; haunt the Ministry of Nuisances with the defiant evicted ghosts of Pilgarlic Towers; visit Blackbury, a small market town with weird weather and an otherworldly visitor; and embark on a dangerous quest through time and space with hero Kron, which begins in the ancient city of Morpork…
Irresistibly entertaining, A Stroke of the Pen, is an essential collection from the great Sir Terry Pratchett, a “master storyteller” (A. S. Byatt) who “defies categorization” (The Times); a writer whose “novels have always been among the most serious of comedies, the most relevant and real of fantasies” (IndependentUK).
“A collection of 20 excellent, often laugh-out-loud early works…. Pratchett devotees will be moved and gratified by this unexpected gift and even casual readers will be utterly charmed. There isn’t a bad story in the bunch.” — Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
“These early stories show Pratchett’s remarkable ability to poke fun at the absurdity of the real world through fantasy full of irreverent wordplay, silly authority figures, and subverted endings…. Pratchett’s legion of fans will relish the view through this almost-overlooked window into the author’s evolution, finding much to love in these clever, funny, and tightly written tales.” — Booklist
“A collection of lost stories from early in Pratchett’s career…. Several stories set in the fictional town of Blackbury have a genial, tall-tale feel, and the “proto-Discworld” in ‘The Quest for the Keys’ is a true treat.” — Kirkus Reviews
“A short and slightly bittersweet portrait of Pratchett as a young writer, as seen through this collection of long-lost and forgotten short stories…. They reflect an author in search of his craft, but there are hints of the Discworld to come… particularly in the standout story in the collection, ‘The Quest for the Keys’…. The earliest seeds of what later became Discworld are there for readers who still miss his inimitable style.” — Library Journal
Terry Pratchett was the acclaimed author of the global bestselling Discworld series, the first of which, The Color of Magic, was published in 1983. In all, he was the author of more than fifty bestselling books which have sold more than 100 million copies worldwide. His novels have been widely adapted for stage and screen, and he was the winner of multiple prizes, including the Carnegie Medal for his young adult novel The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents. He was awarded a knighthood by Queen Elizabeth II for his services to literature in 2009, although he always wryly maintained that his greatest services to literature was to avoid writing any. He lived in England and died in 2015 at the age of sixty-six.