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Terry Pratchett: A Life With Footnotes: The Official Biography

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Where is the option to give this book 10 out of 5? Because, damn, it can't be overstated how good this book is. Living a life alongside one of the world’s greatest authors, then reliving every moment for his biography, has been an incredible journey. Terry was one of the most talented, complex, intellectually stimulating people I’ve ever had the privilege of meeting – a true genius.”

A deeply moving and personal portrait of the extraordinary life of Sir Terry Pratchett, written with unparalleled insight and filled with funny anecdotes, this is the only official biography of one of our finest authors. After Terry was diagnosed with Posterior Cortical Atrophy, a rare form of Alzheimer’s disease, in 2007, at the cruelly early age of 59, I began to accompany him at public appearances, reading for him when he no longer could, helping him through interviews on stage as “keeper of the anecdote”. We became, of necessity, a sort of double act. Transworld Publishers are thrilled to announce the publication of Terry Pratchett: A Life with Footnotes, the official biography of Sir Terry Pratchett, written by Rob Wilkins, his former assistant, friend and now head of the author’s literary estate.

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His wit, indeed sparkling as it was, and his intelligence was plain to see from what he had written, up until the very (rather bitter) end. The only reason I read this book was because it was about PTerry and it only felt right that I should. So I thank you Rob for this wonderful book. I wept at the beginning. I wept at the end. I cried for all the characters I'll miss and those I never got to meet. The biography will be published in September. Publisher Transworld said it would move from Pratchett being told at the age of six by his headteacher that he would never amount to anything, through the writing of the bestselling Discworld series, his winning the Carnegie medal and his knighthood for services to literature. Wilkins will also cover how Pratchett coped with the challenges of Alzheimer’s.

Lively and affectionate, this is not a critical biography, but nor is it sycophantic. It shows Pratchett as brilliant and generous, but also cantakerous, with a ruthless sense of the ridiculous. i NewsWriten by his assistant and friend, Rob Wilkins, we are taken on an inspiring, hilarious and emotional journey throughout Terry's entire life.

In addition to a whole bunch of amusing and less than amusing key events in Pratchett's life, the biography also includes a jaw-dropping amount of stuff I never knew before. For example, it suddenly became abundantly clear to me why Tiffany Aching lives where she does, and good heavens, I had no idea Pratchett had a shepherd's hut that inspired the one in the books. I was so tempted to start reading The Wee Free Men again and continue until The Shepherd's Crown, but alas, my TBR list won't allow it right now. They're right there on my shelf, though, so maybe later. Following his untimely death from Alzheimer's disease, the mantle of completing Terry's memoir was passed to Rob Wilkins, his former assistant, friend and now head of the author's literary estate.

Look after the business and it will look after you. For all you have done, for all of the little things and all of the much bigger things and for the burying of the bodies … I thank you. Drawing on his own extensive memories, as well as those of Terry’s family, close friends, fans and the colleagues who worked with him over the years, Rob recounts Terry’s story - from his early childhood to the literary phenomenon that his Discworld series became. It also chronicles Terry’s later years, his championing of environmental and humanitarian causes, and how he met and coped with the challenges that ‘The Embuggerance’ of Alzheimer’s brought with it.

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