Terry Pratchett is famous for his fantasy universe called Discworld, which is where the book “Hogfather” takes place. With at least three different plotlines following various characters, a reader could get sucked into these novels and never want to leave. His works have more diversity than anyone would have expected from this almost 70 year-old author, making it no surprise that he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II for services to literature. The Discworld Universe would take at least five pages to cover, so this is just on his holiday novel turned movie “Hogfather.”
The fourth novel starring Terry Pratchett’s interpretation of Death, “Hogfather,” follows Susan Sto Helit, the granddaughter of Death, as she is roped into saving the Hogfather, who is Pratchett’s version of Santa Claus. The Hogfather went missing because of a man named Teatime (pronounced Teh-a-tem-eh but only by those he threatens) who was hired to kill him. In the meantime, the Hogfather’s role is left empty, and only Death can take his place.
Susan Sto Helit has to try and be normal while also getting her grandfather to stop and still make sure that Hogswatch Night, the equivalent of Christmas, happens as planned. She is armed with a fire poker, common sense and uncommon sense, and she uses these against various monsters, enemies and bogeymen. These monsters, more often than not, were childhood fears brought to life.
“Hogfather” is an imaginative novel with diverse characters and a powerful female lead. Consistent with Pratchett’s writings, the story takes stereotypes and turns them on their heads, and oftentimes figuratively laughing at them while doing so. It is a great novel to read to get into the holiday spirit while also getting introduced to Terry Pratchett’s incredible universe.
There are surprising twists and humorous conversations sprinkled throughout the book as a whole. In my opinion, it is well worth a read any time of the year; however, it works especially well as a holiday novel no matter what a person’s religion is. This is thanks to Terry Pratchett’s ability to write characters with clear intentions that anyone can see themselves in.