…I also remember, very clearly, reading Night watch on the airplane, at night, returning to school from a two week trip to Spain. I was exhausted and it was dark, but I kept my dinky seat light on and tore through that paperback. Night watch is a special book to almost every Discworld reader I’ve ever known, but maybe that’s because I know mostly Vimes-people. (Discworld is a series with many books and many characters; Some will appeal more to the individual reader than others. I think I belonged to Granny Weatherwax from the start, but then – then there was the city watch…) Sam Vimes, at first a comic relief drunk cop, suddenly allowed to be real. And, well, epic. It blew me away back then, and on every re-read of the book since then.
I had a few years back there, in which chronic illness happened and I had a lot of what in technical terms is called shitty goddamn brainfog, and I couldn’t read. Not for real. I think I read the first few pages of Hyperion a dozen times, trying so hard, and I’d just get a headache or fall asleep, completely unable to comprehend paragraphs. It sucked. But I could visit old friends, so I re-read Harry Potter and – indeed- Discworld, a lot. Over and over again. Sometimes I managed new material, usually YA stuff. Still, most of my time, I was in Ankh-Morpork or in Lancre, hanging out with Agnes Nitt and Greebo, the librarian, lord Vetinari, the auditors, oh, man, the auditors.
One might suggest I’d had enough, but, no. I have reclaimed my brain since then and am blissfully able to enjoy any book I want to read now, and I do. And what I want to read is the entirety of Discworld, all over again.