This review was originally posted at Goodreads and imported here later with next to no spell/grammar checking.
The Hogfather (the jolly old man who’s going through chimneys giving children presents) has disappeared. Susan Sto Helit (a governess and a scourge of the monsters under the bed) goes on to investigate. In the meantime Death (her grandfather) tries to fill the gap by giving children presents.
It’s a fun book with fun characters (Susan is really badass) a nice little mystery and a helping of jokes.
That said, the whole thing holds together a little less than the other Discworld books and it wasn’t clear how the various plot lines all relate to each other. This was explained in the end, but result wasn’t terribly satisfactory.
In addition, since Hogfather borrows heavily from the English and American Christmas with which I had no direct experience, I was likely missing a lot of the cultural context here. One picks bits and pieces up from TV and other books, but I can’t help but feel that this would have all landed much better if I had put up the stockings or grown up with dreams of a fat man being hauled by reindeers.
Still, this is a nice little book — funny, easy to read, with some really good ideas in it.
And I really liked the conversation between Death and Suzan about belief, morality and justice. A great little bit of philosophy at the end.