5 out of 5 stars

Against his better judgement, Vimes has been persuaded, no told, that he is go on holiday. He has even been asked to surrender his badge temporarily so he doesn’t think about work. The copper in him ran too deep, not even a brace of oxen would be able to pull that way of life from him. The envelope containing his bade is delivered to Lord Vetinari, but they all know that the badge isn’t in there…

Vimes had never been to the house, Crundells, but it was better known as Ramkin Hall. It was a pretty large estate, large enough to have a pub and a trout stream in the grounds. There would be staff too, lots of staff. This was something that Vimes was not used to given his background and pretty much every time he would make a fopa with his etiquette. He had managed to get it down to two weeks from a month away from work; his son was going to be there too and it was going to be interesting with his fascination with all things scatological…

It wasn’t long before he uncovers some foul goings-on and not long after that a murder. No one seems to be that bothered though as the poor victim is a goblin. However, Vimes senses that there is much more going on than just this one crime and poke about in the shadier parts of the countryside. The locals and especially the landed gentry are not particularly happy about this for a raft of reasons, so Vimes knows that he is obviously rattling the right cages.

Murder is one thing, but what he begins to uncover is an ancient crime far more terrible than murder.

The worst thing you can do is nothing.

I loved this. Pratchett has taken a good long hard look at our history and found a way of making it into a story that packs a strong moral punch. There is still the humour, I laughed out loud many times at the antics of the characters and never fail to be amazed at the way he can subtly include all manner of references to our history. Vimes is the star of this book though, in amongst all the titles and peerages is still that copper who can feel the street through his cardboard boots and has a sixth sense for truth.

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