Review: The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents (Discworld Book 33 of 53ish)

The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents (Discworld, #28) - Terry Pratchett

The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents is the first young adult Discworld book.  It was a short book, and a cute story, but I thought it was pretty substantial in terms of both plot and messages.  The plot was certainly more substantial than many of his adult Discworld books.  I didn’t think there was quite as much humor, but it had its funny moments.


The basic premise is that some of the rats in Ankh-Morpork, after eating magical rubbish dumped by the residents of the Unseen University, have become intelligent.  They can talk in human speech, read, and think rationally.  Maurice, a cat, has gained similar abilities.  Maurice is, like most cats, opportunistic.  He finds himself a “stupid-looking kid” who can play a pipe, and starts up a scam with the rats and the kid in which they all travel to various towns, the rats freak out the residents, and the stupid-looking kid plays the pipe and pretends he’s charming the rats into leaving the town.  For a fee, of course.  The story begins as they approach a new town where they plan to execute their scam.  Things don’t go as planned.


I enjoyed the story pretty well.  It had some fun characters, both of the human and non-human variety.  I particularly liked Maurice, of course!  Even though this may seem like a weird comparison to anybody who has read both books, I kept having flashbacks to Watership Down.  The books are very different in most ways, but there were some similarities in tone and even a couple similar events.  If I hadn’t read Watership Down so recently, I doubt I would have had the same reaction.