by Terry Pratchett
Category: Fiction / Fantasy
0 pages; ISBN: 0060013133
Rating: 10/10 (Ratings explained)
Reviewer: Harriet Klausner
HarperCollins, Oct 2004, $24.95, 384 pp.
He is a thief, a con-man, and an embezzlerand the law finally catches up to Moist von Lipwig when is arrested. He refuses to tell anyone where he hid the $150,000 in ill-gotten gains. He is hung, but awakens in the Patrician Lord Vetinari’s office. The despot had the hangman cut off the criminal’s air supply so that everyone would think he died and now he has a proposition for Moist. The postal system in Ankh Morpark does not work; if Moist wants to live, he will make the post office a viable enterprise.
His parole officer, Pump the golem, makes sure that Moist performs his duties. The post office is a mess piled up with decades of undelivered mail. Then there is the successful rival, the almost instantaneous communication service clacks run by Mr. Gilt, who has let the system deteriorate with many delays while prices have turned astronomically inflated. Mr. Gilt tries to drive Moist out of business, but the felon has become a hero to the common folks. Moist challenges his opponent to a delivery duel to see who can bring the mail faster to a specific spot. Of course this is Moist’s game but the antagonist is no ignorant fool when it comes to illegal activity. May the best thief win!
This is a fun fantasy that takes the so-called ineffectiveness of the postal service to extremes. Moist finds that he gains as much satisfaction fixing the process as he does running a scam. Terry Pritchett has once again delivered an overnight reading experience filled with hyperbole, an insane setting and wild antics by the fantastic cast. GOING POSTAL lampoons many sacred cows, elephants, and donkeys without offending anyone except postal employees as Mr. Pritchett provides another superb satirical fantasy.
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