First impressions aren't best impressions - but when they are, it is often remarkable. Ever since I sat down and started reading The Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy, the first page was gripping and totally off-topic - the part about the girl in Rickmansworth, nearly two thousand years after one man got nailed to a tree ... I just picked up Colour of Magic and opened the cover - there it was, the excellent words to which I fell in love at first sight.
In a distant and second-hand set of dimensions, in an astral plane that was never meant to fly, the curling star-mists waver and part . . . Great A'Tuin the turtle comes, swimming slowly through the interstellar gulf, hydrogen frost on his ponderous limbs, his huge and ancient shell pocked .... Astropsychology has been, as yet, unable to establish what they think about. .... There was, for example, the theory that A'Tuin had come from nowhere and would continue at a uniform crawl, or steady gait, into nowhere, for all time. This theory was popular among academics. An alternative, favoured by those of a religious persuasion, was that A'Tuin was crawling from the Birthplace to the Time of Mating, as were all the stars in the sky which were, obviously, also carried by giant turtles. When they arrived they would briefly and passionately mate, for the first and only time, and from that fiery union new turtles would be born to carry a new pattern of worlds. This was known as the Big Bang hypothesis.
Yes, the Big Bang hypothesis. It is these kinds of off-hand sideways (yes, I mean oblique) references that takes up these books from Excellent Reading to Excellent Re-Reading. So here I am, starting on a Discworld read-a-thon. I plan to read each and every one of those 27 books over the next month - in sequence. I have already read Sourceror and Equal Rites (which I picked up by mistake - lucky me).
Precisely why all the above should be so is not clear, but goes some way to explain why, on the disc, the Gods are not so much worshipped as blamed.
I wish I could stay and quote more - but if really liked it, why not just get the whole book and read it - just don't visit the Counterweight Continent.
I shall go forth and multiply fractions