Book:Interesting Times

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Interesting Times
Cover art by Josh Kirby
Publisher Victor Gollancz
Publication date November 1994
ISBN 0552142352
Pages 351
Main characters Rincewind, Twoflower, Cohen the Barbarian
Series Rincewind Series
Annotations View
All data relates to the first UK edition.


Mighty Battles! Revolution! Death! War! (and his sons Terror and Panic, and daughter Clancy).

The oldest and most inscrutable empire on the Discworld is in turmoil, brought about by the revolutionary treatise What I Did On My Holidays. Workers are uniting, with nothing to lose but their water buffaloes. Warlords are struggling for power. War (and Clancy) are spreading through the ancient cities.

And all that stands in the way of terrible doom for everyone is:

Rincewind the Wizzard, who can't even spell the word 'wizard' ...

Cohen the barbarian hero, five foot tall in his surgical sandals, who has had a lifetime's experience of not dying ...

...and a very special butterfly.


Main Characters

Minor Characters

Cameos and Mentions

Concepts, Items, Etc.


Roundworld References

Direct references to Roundworld:


  • "'So they'll sort of be in charge of themselves, will they?', [said Rincewind]. 'Indeed,' said Lotus Blossom. 'By means of the People's Committee,' said Butterfly [...] 'My word,' [Rincewind] said [...] 'I had this sudden feeling [...] that there won't be all that many water buffalo string holders on the People's Committee. In fact... I get this kind of... voice telling me that a lot of the People's Committee, correct me if I'm wrong, are standing in front of me right now?' 'Initially, of course,' said Butterfly. 'The peasants can't even read and write.'" - the Red Army's plans sound a lot like the Bolshevik revolution
  • "[21] Much later, Rincewind had to have therapy for this. It involved a pretty woman, a huge plate of potatoes and a big stick with a nail in it." - This footnote appears fairly early in the book, and sort of gives away that Rincewind will at least survive the battle, since the therapy occurs "much later".
  • [Harper PB p177] "So...this is the new Great Wizard of...whom we have read so much," I suppose it's wishful thinking, but the Japanese film Gamera features the line "Maybe it's the flying saucer that I...heard", which mercilessly mocked in the 1991 season of Mystery Science Theater 3000 and was used as a callback in several other episodes.
  • [Corgi PB, p195] The exchange between the sisters Pretty Butterfly and Lotus Blossum, debating the non-appearance of traitor Two Fire Herb.

Lotus Blossom innocently says "You mean he had been caught already?"

This echoes Winston Smith in Orwell's 1984, when in prison he is brought beore O'Brien, who he innocently thinks is another dissident. In fact O'Brien is an agent provocateur whose role is to draw out sedition by pretending to be a rebel.

"O'Brien! You mean they got you too?"

O'Brien smiles unpleasantly and says "Oh no, Winston. They got me a long time ago", leaving the awful truth to dawn...



Adapted by Stephen Briggs into a stage play in 2005.


First Edition Cover by Josh Kirby
Book Proof
'Letterbox' Hardback
Paperback 2004
Audio Cassette
Audio CD
Cover by Michael Sabanosh
US Cover
Paperback 2012
Unseen Library Edition
Collectors Library Edition
Paperback 2022

External Links

Interesting Times Annotations - The Annotated Pratchett File

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