Having recently read a critically acclaimed YA novel (Sophie’s World) and coming away quite disappointed with the whole story and experience, it was easy to see how much better Terry Pratchett is at writing stories for kids just by reading The Carpet People – which also happens to be his first written and published novel, started when he was merely 17! I guess if one has talent, one really has talent, and no amount of praise can make a book better than it really is.
The Carpet People really is quite fun and funny and thoughtful and satirical and all those things we love about Pratchett and his Discworld stories. Never mind that the copy I bought is probably a misprint considering all the ‘eh’s are somehow ‘>’s, and the ‘ek’s are ‘-‘. But I did buy it at the Big Bad Wolf sale for a quarter of the price it would normally be, so I don’t have any real complaints.
I really enjoyed imagining a world existing inside a carpet. With cities as large as a full stop, fallen grains of sugar and salt become monolithic structures, carpet strands larger than trees, dust as material to build homes from and hair as bridges and roads. Lacquer is mined from achairleg and copper from a fallen penny.
And why not, right? I mean, look at all the things that get lost in carpets. I once had a wooly shag carpet/rug and beads would literally get lost in there, emerging a year or so later despite the regular vacuuming. And I just loved that Pratchett took this idea and ran with it.
Great for kids and grown-ups alike.