It's the most uniquely shaped world of its kind. Held up by four elephants who stand upon the back of the magnificent Star Turtle, Great A'Tuin--welcome to the Discworld!
Discworld is a series of humorous fantasy novels written by the late Sir Terry Pratchett from 1983 to 2015, totalling 41 books. This may sound overwhelming for anyone interested in reading the series, but fear not! Discworld doesn't focus on a singular protagonist throughout its canon. Instead, there's wide cast of characters with independent stories in the Discworld setting.
So where do we start?
The books' order in the series are based on their publication. Some books will hint at events from previous books, but these are treated more as Easter Eggs than essential things to know, so reading one book as a standalone experience can be done. If you're looking to follow a specific protagonist or storyline, this article will point you in the right direction.
The protagonists of the Discworld are--
Rincewind, a cowardly wizard of no particular skill and reluctant hero in large scale situations. Common companions of his include a barbarian warrior of advanced age, a tourist enjoying his vacation, and walking luggage.
The Witches. Granny Weatherwax, Nanny Ogg, and Magrat Garlick make up a ragtag coven of witches who often tackle stories inspired by European fairy tales, folklore, and Shakespeare. Following their collection is Tiffany Aching. A witch-in-training, her stories are aimed at a young adult and juvenile audience.
Death. Discworld's personification of Death makes a short appearance in most of the books and is the only character whose dialog is written in small uppercase letters. He has a fascination with humanity and is quick to deny any emotion he experiences despite having quite the range.
The City Watch is a group of law enforcers stationed in the large mercantile city of Ankh-Morpork. Their stories focus on urban fantasy and the ensuing technological progress of the Discworld.
Moist von Lipwig, a conman who is sentenced to perform community services as an alternative to hanging. Paired with his book list are Individual Stories that do not focus on any of the protagonists listed above and instead exist within the whole of the Discworld.
There are also three books focused specifically on the inner workings of the Discworld-- The Science of Discworld, The Globe, and Darwin's Watch. Needless to say, there's many paths you can take when exploring this vividly unique world.
Thank you for reading!