Small Gods by terry pratchett
I would like to introduce terry pratchet to those who not allready know him. Because i like to be lazy i introduce himself via wikipedia, and only write about the book i want to introduce:
I believe small gods is one of the masterpieces of modern literature and a absolute must to read. At first glance its a weired mix of classic fantasy with comedy but it is oh so much more. Pratchett has developped his own fantasy world, called the discworld. As the name implies its not a planet but a disc. The disc is carried by 4 elephants, which stand on the back of the giant turtle great a´tuin. The world is a kind of parody on our world, but with a lot between the lines and in the text that can make you think quite a lot. I would even go so far as to say they contain real wisdom. The discworld series has now far more than 30 books written on/around/about it. Some are a subserie like the watch books, the Death series (as in grim reaper), the whitch series etc. But some stand alone, and small god is one of them. That makes it a perfect start for discworld newbies.
Lets talk a bit about the story. It begins in the garden of a monastery, in which the, sorry i forgot what his position was, soemthing well below priest, lets say acolythe Brutha works with the melons. Suddenly the great god om talks to him. A bit of explanation, on discwold tzhe gods really do exist, all of them. Our belief in them gives them power. Back to the story. Om hasnt been with his people for severall hundred years, and a lot has happened. The people have lost their faith in him. Oh they havent found a new one, and they still follow the rituals and sing the songs, but they dont believe any longer. The only exception being brutha. Om is used to being a gerat white swan that seduces the women, or a big Taurus who tramples the infidels. But having only 1 believer left mena she has lost all his power, so the only form he could take was a small turtle. That came as quite a shock to him. If he looses brutha as well, he is history. There are millions of small gods summing like insects in the desert, waiting for someone to believe. By no means he is ready to do that again, 1 time is enough. So he tries to win back his believers with brutha as his prophet.
First of all the book has a brilliant humor. I literally had tears from laughing, and more than 1 time sour muscles from laughing too much. But it is also a very deep book about religion and philosophy (one stop of their journey is in ephebe, land of the philosophers, ,a bit like the old greece), what they have in common etc. I have read it now for 5 times, and everytime i discover something new. For instance he has implemented many greek philosphical ideas into the text, and shows you some of them from a new and refreshing standpoint.
A typical pratchett joke is "what does eureka mean ? I need a towel ^^" if you get it you seem to know something about greek philosophy. It really means "i found it", in the sence of i finally understand it. But as the story goes a greek philosopher once had a really important idea in the bathtub and was so fascinated he completely forgot where he was, sprang out and ran out on the street nakes shouting "eureka eureka", hence it might mean i need a towel ^^
Be patient: English is not my first language.