mustafa.runner, January 1, 2013 (view all comments by mustafa.runner)
This book had a great storyline and it was very action-packed at some points. The suspense was amazing and the descriptions of the scenery are superb. This is a great book if you are looking for realistic fiction, placed in the 1500s on an island near British-colonized islands. It incorporates themes of pirates, scientists, cannibals and the Royal Family
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crowyhead, May 19, 2009 (view all comments by crowyhead)
Don't go into this book expecting Discworld; you'll be disappointed. That's not to say that Pratchett's usual sense of humor and way with words is not present, it's just that this is a different world and there's a different slant to this book. It's really excellent YA writing; if it had been intended for a slightly younger audience, it would have easily given Gaiman's Graveyard Book a run for its money for the Newbery.
I personally still find the epilogue rather weak, but overall this is one of those novels that seems lightweight at first, and then you find your mind returning to it repeatedly long after you've finished it and put it away.
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Bobbee, September 21, 2008 (view all comments by Bobbee)
This is a great book. It's unlike anything I've read - truly unique. It has a lot of heart, great action, an amazing story and compelling characters. It is a fascinating look at how people cope with their world turning upside-down, and how thinking people can make a huge difference in their world. It also has very funny everyday moments among the literally earth-shaking events. I would recommend it to anyone at middle-school reading level or higher.
I couldn't wait for publication date so I bought an advance reader's copy online. I have read just about everything Mr. Pratchett has written and I believe he is one of our most undervalued writers for two reasons: he writes very funny stuff and his books are in the fantasy genre. Neither of these seem to impress literary critics.
Nation is completely different from anything he's written before. It should, I believe, bring him some of that overdue critical acclaim.
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"Publishers Weekly Review"
by Publishers Weekly,
"In Carnegie Medalist Pratchett's (the Discworld novels; A Hat Full of Sky) superb mix of alternate history and fantasy, the king of England, along with the next 137 people in line to the throne, has just succumbed to the plague; the era might be akin to the 1860s or '70s. As the heir apparent is being fetched from his new post as governor of an island chain in the South Pelagic Ocean, his daughter, the redoubtable Ermintrude, still en route to join him in the South Pelagic, has been shipwrecked by a tsunami. She meets Mau, whose entire people have been wiped out by the great wave (he escaped their fate only because he was undergoing an initiation rite on another island). She and Mau each suffer profound crises of faith, and together they re-establish Mau's nation from other survivors who gradually wash up on shore and rediscover (with guidance from spirits) its remarkable lost heritage. Neatly balancing the somber and the wildly humorous in a riveting tale of discovery, Pratchett shows himself at the height of his powers. Ages 12 — up." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
by Booklist (Starred Review),
"Broad in its scope and concrete in its details, this unusual novel strips away the trappings of two very different nations to consider what it is people value and why....Quirky wit and broad vision make this a fascinating survival story on many levels."
by Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review),
"Pratchett's latest masterpiece....A searching exploration of good and evil, fate and free will, both as broad and as deep as anything this brilliant and, happily, prolific author has produced so far."
by The Horn Book,
"The unique pleasure of this story is that all the serious subjects and juicy ethical questions...are fully woven into action and character....[I]t is hard to imagine a reader who won't feel welcomed into this nation."
The author of the phenomenally successful Discworld series delivers the mesmerizing story of a boy whose journey to manhood requires the strength to defy expectations and the courage to forge new beliefs.
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