Sunday, March 15, 2015

Terry Pratchett, Truckers & The Damned Alzheimer's

It always happens.

Whenever I make a plan to dedicate a few days to writing about something on the blog - an event gets in the way.

I had the entire week ready for Cheltenham-themed posts, so this is the first opportunity I have writing about the passing of Terry Pratchett.

I wasn't keen on his Discworld novels. However, there was one series I did read.

And I loved them.

Back when I was in junior school, there was a television series on either BBC or ITV that reviewed books. I cannot for the life of me remember the name of this programme, but I can recall some of the books that the presenters recommended to their audience.

Unbelievable - a collection of short stories by Paul Jennings still rests on my bookshelf to this very day.

And there was Truckers.

I remember I was the first person to loan the book out of the library having put myself down on a waiting list to receive it upon its arrival.

From what I can remember - the story is about a clan of gnomes that live on the grounds of a motorway and something happens which forces them to move from their dwellings. They end up deciding to move into a superstore using a truck from said store.

I guess that's how I remembered it. I could be wrong!

Years later, the book was made into an animated television series, so it was cool to see the thing brought to life.

Their were sequels, as well - Diggers (they steal JCBs or 'Jekubs' as the gnomes call them) and Wings, where they end up in America after becoming stowaways on a Concorde.

So, yes - I didn't evolve into a Discworld enthusiast but Pratchett's work did crossover into my life albeit with his books for children.

I've seen two close relatives deal, and eventually succumb, to Alzheimer's Disease so I also have to tip my hat to the author for the way he dealt with the illness.

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