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Small Gods


Age Group: 13+ Years

Title – Small Gods

Author – Terry Prachett

HarperTorch

 

“And it came to pass that the great god Om spake unto Brutha, the Chosen One: Psst! Are you deaf, boy?!” For the Great God Om was a tortoise and without Brutha’s help, fated to remain one.
 
This book is about gods in Discworld (a world created by Pratchett – a flat disc on the back of four elephants astride a giant turtle, floating in space), and their worshippers. According to Pratchett, it is not people who need gods but gods who depend on people as the strength of our belief gives them power. Without us, they are powerless.
 
The Great God Om is one such god. The people put their faith into idols and sacred symbols rather than in him and in this way he has lost most of his believers. He is reduced to a tortoise with just memories of being a god. Only Brutha, the novice, is a true believer, and it is up to him to get the god back into his true form. Things are complicated by the existence of Vorbis, the Exquisitor. He is not only a murderer, but he also creates murderers; he changes people and makes them think like him. And even worse, everywhere in the kingdom, people are beginning to doubt the existence of Om. Death plays a central character in the book – an interesting portrayal, he is both funny (he always speaks in capital letters, without punctuation), and profound (he passes no judgment on the souls before him). The book has a range of funny, lovable characters, from the Great God Om to the charlatan salesman Cut-me-own-Handoff Dhblah. While the book is hilarious and can be enjoyed on the surface, it also has a subtle deeper meaning. From Brutha, we learn the importance of forgiveness, love and peace.
 
‘Surely one of the best novels Terry Pratchett has ever written and the best comedy’, says John Clute in Interrzone magazine, and readers will absolutely agree with him!
 

- Shriya N,
Grade 9, Kensri School, Bangalore.
Third place in ParentEdge Book Review Contest