Nation

Nation

by Terry Pratchett

Hardcover

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Overview

When a giant wave destroys his village, Mau is the only one left. Daphne—a traveler from the other side of the globe—is the sole survivor of a shipwreck. Separated by language and customs, the two are united by catastrophe. Slowly, they are joined by other refugees. And as they struggle to protect the small band, Mau and Daphne defy ancestral spirits, challenge death himself, and uncover a long-hidden secret that literally turns the world upside down.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780061433016
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 09/30/2008
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 297,478
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.50(d)
Lexile: NC790L (what's this?)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

Sir Terry Pratchett was the internationally bestselling author of more than thirty books, including his phenomenally successful Discworld series. His young adult novel, The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents, won the Carnegie Medal, and Where's My Cow?, his Discworld book for “readers of all ages,” was a New York Times bestseller. His novels have sold more than seventy five million (give or take a few million) copies worldwide. Named an Officer of the British Empire “for services to literature,” Pratchett lived in England. He died in 2015 at the age of sixty-six.

Hometown:

Salisbury, Wiltshire, England

Date of Birth:

April 28, 1948

Place of Birth:

Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire, England

Education:

Four honorary degrees in literature from the universities of Portsmouth, Bristol, Bath and Warwick

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Nation 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 167 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Although this is not a part of his Diskworld series, Terry Pratchett has written a wonderful book filled with his personal brand of humor and poignancy. It has been classified as a children's (or young adult) book, but there is plenty for adults to enjoy. In fact, adults may understand more of the humor in some parts than children, or at the least, I hope so. The story is based around two young characters: a boy from the Pacific Islands who has lost his tribe, and an English girl shipwrecked on the island with him. It is ostensibly a story about growing up and accepting people for who they are, instead of where they were born (or whether or not they wear trousers, for that matter), but it could just as well be a story about pelicans that drink beer and octopuses that climb trees. There is adventure, a bit of horror, plenty of fantasy, and a touch of rommance - namely, enough variety to satify most any reader. The story may be dissapointing to the romantics in the crowd, but cynically, life will be disappointing to them as well. The story ends right where it should, but like most good stories, you are left with the disappointment that it is over. To make a long story...less long, go buy this book, and read, no, TREASURE it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This story is based in "our" world, not Discworld, but it is still written with similar style and feel, and has the same warped look at politics, religion, and relationships that those books have. A good read, very funny, full of action at parts, and how people REALLY think when they're going through the motions of being a hero. Historical fiction in nature, taking place in an equatorial island setting.
Falling-books More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed reading this book. As it was my first book of Terry Pratchett's, I didn't know what to expect and I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. I like the way this books sucks you in and you never know what to expect (though a few things were a given, but not enough to bore you). An unusual read that surprisingly does not remind me of any other books that I have read, and that is a rarity.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book! It was sad in the right parts and funny and romantic in all the others! Mao is so sweet and 'Daphine' is independent! The only part that was dissapointing to me was the end! but at least it worked out for some people!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Your day of greatest joy becomes your worst nightmare if you are an island boy where your manhood ceremony becomes the day of your tribe's destruction. This is haunting story about surviving, building trust, and sceaming at the gods you believed in just to keep on going. Excellent read for young adults without that love triangle stuff that seems to be everywhere and plenty of themes to keep adults interested, too. Good job.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Is the only one way to describe w/o spoiling yhe epicness. Even nonreaders will enjoy
fyrefly98 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Summary: Nation is set in an alternate version of the south Pacific ocean during the late 1800s. Mau is a boy - soon to be man - who is caught up in a tsunami during his manhood rites. When he returns to his home island, his village and everyone he's ever known is gone, swept away by the wave. However, he's not alone on the island; a British ship has been shipwrecked on the island by the tsunami, with a British young lady as its only survivor. Daphne (the young lady - or "the ghost girl", as Mau calls her) knows all of the finer points of etiquette, but must come to terms with the fact that nothing in her breeding has prepared her for survival on a tropical island. Mau, the last survivor of his people, must not only figure out how to live without a village to support him, but how to live with the death of everything he knows, and with the capricious gods who would allow such a terrible thing to happen. Only together do they have any hope of rebuilding the world and the life washed away by the wave.Review: I liked Good Omens well enough, but after reading my first few of Pratchett's solo novels, I didn't understand what all of the fuss was about. They were fine, but they didn't strike me as anything special. But, now that I've listened to the Tiffany Aching books and Nation, I can describe myself as a full-on fan. (Maybe I only like Terry Pratchett as read by Stephen Briggs? It's a distinct possibility; he's a wonderful narrator who really complements Pratchett's sense of humor.) In any case, Nation was wonderful. I loved the science and history of science aspect of it, and how it was accessible to young adult readers but not dumbed down. I loved that there were real moral, emotional, and philosophical dilemnas that the characters had to wrestle with, and that they don't find any easy answers. I loved the characters themselves - particularly Mau, who I now have a bit of a crush on. I loved that the novel managed to be both hilarious in its dry, witty way, as well as heartbreaking, occasionally even at the same time. I loved that Pratchett managed to deal with a lot of thorny issues, like colonialism and atheism, without getting overly moralizing or forcing his point of view about any of them. But what I particularly loved was the sensibility of the book - to quote what I said in my review for Wintersmith, the characters "just generally seem to have their head screwed on right." It's a book that values - and encourages - independent thought, both in its characters and in its readers, and I can only wish that more books did the same.The only thing I didn't entirely love was the plotting. I was completely enthralled for the first half or so of the book, when it was still very survival-story heavy. (My Side of the Mountain got me hooked on survival stories at a young age and I've never fully recovered.) I stayed absorbed during the middle section, but by the last third of the book, when more people begin to show up, I felt like the plot lost a little of its steam. I was still listening intently, mostly wondering how Pratchett could possibly wrap things up satisfactorily (he did, although not at all in the way I was expecting), but the story didn't feel nearly as urgent as it had in the earlier parts. Still, on the whole, I really enjoyed this book, and suspect it will be one of my top picks for the month, if not for the year. (...and, for those of you who have read it: I have absolutely caught myself muttering "Does Not Happen!" whenever something I'm working on isn't going my way.) 4.5 out of 5 stars.Recommendation: It's similar in outlook to Pratchett's Tiffany Aching books, obviously, but also I think to Phillip Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy, although Nation is less preachy and more open-ended than those. I'd recommend Nation to just about everybody, actually, but particularly those who are looking for an exc
millme on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Wow...religion, life & death, love, coming of age. This book has it all!
elwyne on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
One of the best books I have ever read. A touching, gripping, inspiring, entertaining, delightful story, engaging, real characters, all the good stuff. Love it.
mjspear on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Robinson Crusoe gets politically correct... Daphne/Ermintrude, a proper Victorian lass, is shipwrecked on an island where she meets Mau, lone native survivor of a tsunami. Other natives arrive, in time, and the pair struggle to build a new 'nation.' Cultural differences and murder and mayhem are tossed in. This reader wanted to like the book but grew tired of the at-times self-conscious voice. It may appeal to the middle school set but will be a hard sell for high schoolers.
Moriquen on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I continue to be amased at the writing capacities of dear Sir Terry! I just adore the Discworld series, although I haven't even made it halfway through the series just yet. This book is different from the discworld series in many ways. It is a more serious book, but that doesn't mean it isn't funny. It still is hilarious at times. I enjoyed it a lot and somehow it fit right into what I was doing at the time. (No I wasn't shipwrecked on an island ;) !!) Plain and simple: I loved it.
goth_marionette on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book was amazing. Thought provoking, funny, and the characters are very likeable. If you want to read a good adventure comedy this book is it. If you want to ponder the meaning of life, religion and what it means to be human this book is it. Regardless of what level you read this book on it is entertaining and well worth your time.
sexy_librarian on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I love Terry Pratchett, so of course I had to read Nation, and of course it's wonderful. Pratchett's gift for storytelling draws you into the story of a native boy whose island has been swept away by a giant wave on the eve of his manhood ceremony. He is on the verge of ending it when he meets the shipwrecked girl who has been swept onto his island. Together they rebuild the Nation, and answer ancient mysteries. Pratchett does such a great job at weaving everything together, taking seemingly insignificant details and bringing them back to play an important role. Definitely a read for high school students.
hayleyscomet on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A standalone novel, this was a really beautiful piece by Pratchett. It plays with themes of loss and the creation of society and culture and the ownership of scientific knowledge and the role of religion--all without losing his light humorous optimism, and told through the eyes of two very relatable children.It was a great balance of fun and seriousness, and though the novel sometimes lacked a little cohesion, it tied together well in the end--and I absolutely loved the ending.Pratchett takes on a lot of themes here, ones which are a little more serious than what's usually covered by him--but he wraps it all up in the end of his author's note when he says, "Thinking: This book contains some. Whether you try it at home is up to you."
TiffanyHickox on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is the first work I have red by the famed Terry Pratchett, and it was absolutely delightful. the characters were so well drawn, and even though the circumstances the characters were placed in were extraordinary, the chracters reacted in ways that were realistic, which helped to draw me compassionately into the book. It was full of humor while maintaining a serious and thought provoking tone at the same time. The last chapter may have been a little confusing at first, but its purpose is well served. This is definately a book I would recommend to anyone, and I would probably read again! It would be a great pick for book clubs!
Bibliotropic on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I admit that I hadn't read much Pratchett before buying this book, but now that I've finished reading Nation, I want to see more of what this man has done and can do. (Shame for now I have other more pressing books to get to.)Nation was an enjoyable read from start to finish. It's a book that presents thinking in an intelligent and wonderful way and messes with the perception of meaning, right, and wrong. It's a culture clash seen from both ends, and by the end you can't help but see both sides as right, wrong, and foolish at the same time. It challenges faith, ignorance, history, culture, and a whole host of other issues in such pleasant ways that you could have spent the last 50 pages being preached at and you'd have enjoyed every word of it!Now that takes skill!The final chapter (or epilogue, depending on how you really want to look at it) was quite powerful to me, as it expressed how an entire culture can not only be remade, but made in the first place, by chance encounters, and that the smallest things have the biggest consequences.I think that if more young people read books like this, they'd enjoy reading more in general. Which is exactly what I'm going to tell my roommate when I pass it off to him to read.
LilyHeart on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I love the Discworld novels, but I found Nation a real struggle to get through. I hate to say it, but it was just a bit dull. I didn't really care much for the characters and the story was a bit meandering. It had some touching and funny moments, but overall pretty poor for Pratchett.
ambookgeek on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
OK read, not really my cup of tea. I found it rather slow and it felt like it was trying excessively hard to be an important work for young adults.
Georg.Miggel on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
have tried several times to read a Disc-World novel from cover to cover, without any success. Since many friends of mine constantly point out that I am to blame myself if I don¿t like Pratchett, I read this one. At least I made it until the last page, but I did not like that either. Fourth world meets first world in the 18th century. Of course, the ¿savages¿ are the good ones, and they are much cleverer and more ¿developed¿ than Her Majesty¿s subjects. But still, you can turn the world around as often as you want, you don¿t change anything if your point of view remains first-world-perspective. And even if you try to be politically correct (or especially then) and mix some (good) jokes into your story that doesn¿t justify a kitschy and unsatisfying ending. But there is one sentence I really loved and I will add it to my favourite quotes: ¿¿What did they feed the lions and tigers with in the ark, sir?¿(Pratchett, Nation, p. 297)
bookworm12 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This was my first experience with Pratchett and it will not be my last. After hearing about him for years, I decided I just had to read something of his. It took me a minute to get into the book. I wasn¿t sure what to expect and at first I wasn¿t sure what to make of the story. It centers on Maw, the only survivor of the Nation, which is destroyed by a tsunami. He is left alone, disconnected from all he has ever known and he¿s at once filled with grief, confusion and anger. He turns to the Nation¿s gods for answers and is left feeling more lost than ever. The plot really picks up when we meet Daphne (really Ermintrude, but she hates that name, so she says her name is Daphne.) She is a British girl whose ship has crashed on the island. Her relationship with Maw reminded me so much of Peter Pan and Wendy. She¿s prim and proper at first and he is baffled by her ways, but soon they find a balance and develop a wonderful friendship.The best parts of the book, for me, were the interactions between those two. Once they moved past their initial impressions they realized they could learn so much from one another. I also loved seeing Daphne gain confidence in herself. She was such a great character; part girl, part woman, trying to come to terms with her own grief and grow up at the same time. With absolutely no spoilers included I do want to say how much I loved the ending. The characters grew on me throughout the book and by the end I felt so invested in them. The ending definitely increased my rating of the book and my overall love of it. So if it feels slow at first, definitely give it time.I have to say I was really impressed with Pratchett. He has a similar writing style to Neil Gaiman (whom I adore) and the delightful sense of humor of Douglas Adams. So clearly he¿s destined to become a favorite. He also manages to balance humor and a deeper message, which I really value in an author. I think that can be a hard thing to accomplish and he seemed to do it effortlessly. At first I didn¿t even realize he had slipped such important issues into the fold of the story, but once I did I was really moved by the points-of-view he brings up. I¿m looking forward to trying out his Discworld series, which I¿ve heard is great.
saraluisa on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Great book for anyone who's struggling with ideas of religion and faith. Such a beautiful story.
cinnleigh on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Mau is a young man with an indestructible spirit. He¿s full of questions, something that isn¿t highly encouraged. When his world is turned upside down and then thoroughly erased, he must find the strength to go on. Neither a boy nor a man, Mau becomes a new sort of person. With the help of his memories, Mau forges a new path and rebuilds The Nation.No hero can do it alone! Wherever there is a strong young man ready to battle demons and life itself, there must be an equally strong young woman. Daphne is about as strong as they come. Marooned on Mau¿s island after her ship crashes in a storm, Daphne is left with nobody for company save the strange boy who always seems to walk around the island as if in a dream. Daphne is an intelligent young lady and full of personality. The spark between the two as they attempt to communicate through language barriers and rebuild their worlds together is absolutely amazing.NATION is the story of a world in disaster. A plague has ripped through the ¿civilized¿ world while a giant tidal wave takes out many small islands. One of these is Mau¿s. When he returns home from a coming of age visit to the Boy¿s Island, he finds that everything he knows is gone ¿ completely erased. His friends, his family, the entire Nation was swept out to sea. Not having had the special ceremony that turns a boy into a man, he is now no longer boy, nor man. When he meets Daphne, he must struggle to communicate with her and go on with life even though he questions everything he knows. As they rebuild the community they are met with survivors coming from other islands every day. With their help, Mau and Daphne might just be able to put the Nation and Mau¿s soul at peace.Contrary to popular belief, NATION is not set in any part of what we know as Earth. Terry Pratchett wrote this book as an alternate reality world, so many bets are off when it comes down to rules and the laws of nature. I absolutely loved that about this book. His world has a high sense of realism to it. This story could happen anywhere and yet, at the same time, we are met with instances where the impossible happens. There are rarely moments when you¿re thrown into what is definitely from the imagination. Instead, these magical moments are thrown throughout the book, creating a realistically impossible world.Outside of the wonderful world building that Pratchett did, I found that the relationship between Mau and Daphne was my second favorite aspect of the book. There are many obstacles to their friendship including the color of their skin, their customs, language, etc. Whatever could be different about these two is, save for their enduring personalities and strong wills. I loved this because it was a nice conflict that added that extra tension to the story. Don¿t get me wrong, there¿s already plenty of delicious tension sprinkled throughout these pages. No, this added tension between the characters. Something that kept us reading, pulled to the characters just as they were pulled to each other.I thought NATION was absolutely fantastic and surprisingly very funny! There were times when my eyes ran ahead of my brain and I got a little confused, so I suggest taking your time with the book. Pratchett has created a complicated world, but one that is completely filled with color and beauty. Feel free to reread passages or entire pages if you need to. Trust me, it¿s completely worth it. This is definitely one of the books that I would pick up and reread over and over again.
mamzel on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A real treat! A young man survives a tsunami which wipes out his entire village. The only other survivor on his island was a young girl who was the only survivor on her English sailing ship. The two get up to a rocky start but learn to cooperate and communicate and help other survivors who find their way to their island. Poses question - why should we thank the gods who have just wiped out my entire community. Timely since I read this when Haiti was struggling with earthquake damage.
Mialro on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
After a devastating tidal wave, Mau's world is turned upside down. He is the only one left of the Nation, a small island in the middle of the ocean. With him on the island is Daphne, an English 'ghost girl', the only survivor of a shipwreck. The two adolescents must survive as best as they can by learning about each other and themselves, trying to make sense of the world, and struggling with questions of faith and suffering.Nearly all of the characters vacillate between atheism, agnosticism, and faith. The characters, including the lesser ones, are relatable because we all struggle with our standards and perspectives that often do not fit the world around us. This book raises many questions about the roles of gods in the events and tragedies of life, but does not really provide any answers. Nation is somewhat unsatisfying in its resolution of the characters' questions and struggles, but this is because it mimics life. For many of us, these questions are never answered fully in life. The handling (or, some might argue, non-handling) of the issue is related to one of the book's other themes: sometimes, just being is enough. I thoroughly enjoyed Terry Pratchett's Nation and found it to be a book filled with grief, humor, memory, faith, agnosticism, beauty, science, and politics, all of which combine to make a memorable story that will stay with the reader.
SunnySD on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
What happens when your world view doesn't allow for things to change? When you've been raised to be intentionally decorative and practically useless - and learn to be useful in spite (or to spite) the little voice in your head? When you aren't sure you're a man, but pretty sure you're no longer a boy? When the world ends?Read and find out.I love Pratchett's Discworld series, but when I realized this wasn't that... the book languished on my shelf while I read a bunch of other stuff. As the due date approached I somewhat reluctantly picked it up and turned to the first page. And was promptly hooked. Okay, technically it took me until somewhere around page 10 or so to not want to put it down.