Tuesday, December 4, 2018

The Witch's Vacuum Cleaner and Other Stories by Terry Pratchett

Do you believe in magic? Can you imagine a war between wizards? An exciting journey in an airship or down in a submarine? Would you like to meet the fastest truncheon in the Wild West?

The Witch’s Vacuum Cleaner is the second fabulously funny short-story collection from the late acclaimed storyteller Terry Pratchett. A follow-up to Dragons at Crumbling Castle, this second batch of storytelling gems features stories written when Sir Terry was just seventeen years old and working as a junior reporter. In these pages, new Pratchett fans will find wonder, mayhem, sorcery, and delight—and loyal readers will recognize the seeds of ideas that went on to influence his most beloved tales later in life.

(Synopsis from Goodreads).

My Thoughts:
My husband is a big fan of Terry Pratchett. He discovered his books earlier this year, and is currently trying to make his way through reading all of his books. Recently, I discovered that I actually own a couple of his short story collections. My husband started reading Terry Pratchett with The Color of Magic. I decided to start with The Witch's Vacuum Cleaner and Other Stories. I found it to just be okay.

I listened to The Witch's Vacuum Cleaner and Other Stories on audiobook. I don't know if that hindered my enjoyment of the book. I don't do well with nonsensical  books, which is what a lot of this was. At times, I found it almost too silly, and I would get bored with it, so my brain would start to wander. Then I would have to rewind my audiobook to realize what was going on. My  least favorite story was definitely the first one, The Witch's Vacuum Cleaner. I had a hard time following along with what was happening, and it became more confusing than anything else.

That being said, there were a couple of stories that I really did enjoy. I liked The Truly Terrible Toothache. It kind of reminded me of a story that I had heard as a child. I found it funny, and witty. I also enjoyed An Ant Called 4179003, and Rincemangle, the Gnome of Even Moor. The rest of the stories, I found to be just okay. A lot of them were boring in parts, and I kept wondering to myself when they were going to get better.

I thought The Witch's Vacuum Cleaner and Other Stories was a quick, enjoyable book. However, it definitely won't make my favorite books of the year list. Even though I thought it was just okay, I definitely want to try more Terry Pratchett books. I think I might try his Discworld series before I try any more short stories, and see if I like that instead. I'm going to try The Color of Magic. I don't think I would recommend this for anyone's first Terry Pratchett book. Seasoned veterans of his writing style might like it though.  

I give The Witch's Vacuum Cleaner and Other Stories: 3/5.

Want to know where to buy this book?


  1. Thank you so much for doing this post. I just ordered it from Amazon to add to the other DOZEN Pratchett books I own.

    1. You're welcome. Thank you for taking the time to read my review.

  2. If you really want to start from the beginning, here they are by year.

    Equal Rites 1987
    Wyrd Sisters 1988
    Sourcery 1989
    Reaper Man 1991
    Witches Abroad 1993
    Small Gods 1994
    Lords and Ladies 1995
    Maskerade 1997
    Soul Music 1995
    The Last Continent 1998
    The Fifth Elephant 2000
    The Thief of Time 2001

    After 2001 my finances kept me from buying any new books in the series.