I have a favorable bias toward the story of someone stumbling into the business of printed news. This story isn't exactly analogous to my own. I decided to start a magazine when the concept of magazines already existed. William de Worde managed to invent the newspaper without even trying. Terry Pratchett does a wonderful job of showing the form evolve in fast-motion.
He also gives ample stage time here to two of my favorite Discworld characters: Lord Vetinari and Commander Vimes. And of course, as always, he manages to make every page humorous without making light of serious issues (which he grapples with on, well, pretty much every page).
This was also terrific read-aloud fare thanks to the character of Mr. Tulip, who swears a lot. Sort of. Specifically, he says, "--ing" all the time. Pratchett makes it clear that he isn't doing the old-fashioned removal of profanity with a dash left behind to show where the bad word was; his character's dialogue is self-cleaning, which leaves a lot of the other characters mystified. It's a lot of fun to read Tulip's dialogue aloud with a solid working-class British accent and lean on that dash before pronouncing the "ing" part. Seriously. Try it. It sounds fantastic.
In fact, I might just use this as a replacement habit to give up swearing, since my son's been begging me to. Kind of a nicotine patch for potty-mouths.
Anyway. Pratchett is such a skilled writer that you can jump into the Discworld books anywhere and enjoy them just fine, but I think this one is even better than usual in that regard. If you haven't read him before, this novel is a great place to start. If you have
read him and haven't read The Truth
yet, what on earth are you --ing waiting for?