The Magic of Terry Pratchett

Marc Burrows

This is the first full biography of Sir Terry Pratchett ever written. Sir Terry was Britain's best-selling living author, and before his death in 2015 had sold more than 85 million copies of his books worldwide.
Date Published :
October 2021
Publisher :
White Owl
Illustration :
32 black and white illustrations
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Binding : Hardback
ISBN : 9781526765505
Pages : 224
Dimensions : 9.25 X 6 inches
Stock Status : In stock
Binding : Paperback
ISBN : 9781399000499
Pages : 288
Dimensions : 9.25 X 6 inches
Stock Status : In stock
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The first ever full biography of one of Britain's best loved and most successful ever writers.

The Magic Of Terry Pratchett is the first full biography of Sir Terry Pratchett ever written. Sir Terry was Britain’s best-selling living author*, and before his death in 2015 had sold more than 85 million copies of his books worldwide. Best known for the Discworld series, his work has been translated into 37 languages, and performed as plays on every continent in the world, including Antarctica.

Journalist, comedian and Pratchett fan Marc Burrows delves into the back story of one of UK’s most enduring and beloved authors, from his childhood in the Chiltern Hills, to his time as a journalist, and the journey that would take him – via more than sixty best-selling books – to an OBE, a knighthood and national treasure status.

The Magic Of Terry Pratchett is the result of painstaking archival research alongside interviews with friends and contemporaries who knew the real man under the famous black hat, helping to piece together the full story of one of British literature’s most remarkable and beloved figures for the very first time.

* Now disqualified on both counts.

About The Author

Marc Burrows is a London based writer, stand up comic and musician, writing regularly for The Guardian, Observer, Drowned in Sound, The Quietus and more. In 2014 he compiled and edited I Think I Can See Where You’re Going Wrong, a collection of the funniest comments from the Guardian website, published by Faber and Faber. People got it for Christmas and read it on the loo, and he was happy with that. He has performed several one-man shows at the Edinburgh Fringe, the most recent of which, Mind Your Head, focused on a lifetime of struggles with his mental health. He also plays bass in the cult punk band, The Men That Will Not Be Blamed For Nothing and can be found regularly touring the UK and USA. He discovered the works of Terry Pratchett when his Mum lent him The Colour of Magic as an eleven-year-old, and spent the next week annoying his classmates by reading the funniest bits out loud. He has never looked back. Find him on Twitter at @20thcenturymarc.


"In this encompassing biography of the prolific fantasy and science-fiction author, writer and comedian Burrows details both the writing accomplishments and the personal life of Sir Terry Pratchett. With his start as an amateur astronomer, Pratchett's journey to his love of books was encouraged by his mother, Eileen, who bribed him with a copy of Kenneth Grahame’s The Wind in the Willows. This led to an adventure to the Beaconsfield Library and an after-school job that gave him access to a cornucopia of material to feed his young mind and his budding writer's imagination. In the summer of 1959, Pratchett wrote a short story for his school magazine about an advertising executive asked by the devil to improve hell’s reputation. This began an epic life of creating stories and books for both children and adults, and his path to joining the sf/fantasy community—there he found his people. His first work for children, The Carpet People, led to the 41-volume Discworld series. By the time of his death in 2015, Pratchett enriched generations of readers with his comedic, fantastical works. Burrows spoke to friends and family, and this biography has moments of sadness, especially when discussing Pratchett's fight with Alzheimer's. But the book is also funny and conversational in tone, and an excellent tribute to a beloved author."

- Booklist

"Marc Burrows’ affectionate yet clear-sighted biography includes enough new material to enthrall existing fans already entrenched in Discworld lore while offering a broad introduction to the man and his work for those less familiar with Ankh-Morpork’s odiferous back alleys."

- Lit Reactor

“…affable and consistently engaging… Burrow’s buoyant, pun-pepperd, and aptly footnote-flecked style… helpfully marries his subject matter, propelling us through decade after decade of a heavily writing-centric life while illuminating Pratchett’s complexities and contradictions without any drag in the tempo.”

- Locus Magazine

“An impressively comprehensive, engagingly written biography. ****” 


“[Pratchett’s] voice is sorely missed… In his absence, The Magic of Terry Pratchett is a worthy substitute.” 

- The Critic

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