Night Watch starts with Vimes and a few others visiting a number of otherwise forgotten graves. When asked what was going on: “you had to have been there.”
One magical lightning storm later and Vimes ends up ‘having been there’ for a second time.
Given Discworld takes aim at just everything that can be discussed within the fantasy framework has put together–and honestly, what can’t?–and that this is the 29th published Discworld novel, it’s not at all surprising that we get a novel about time travel and having to ensure that time happens the way that it was supposed to all along.
The rest of the plot goes about as you’d expect, with Vimes having to deal with what he knows will happen without screwing things up too badly while making sure the younger Vimes grows up into the man he is now. It’s actually an interesting way to do character development. In the future/present time, Vimes is head of a a larger expanded and mostly non-corrupt City Watch. A noble. An ambassador. So how do you grow from there?
Put him in a situation where he’s still grown and learned all he has, but doesn’t have the resources he’s grown used to.
It’s really well done and an enjoyable book, even if the general structure doesn’t really do anything surprising.
Well worth the read, although you’d like want to read at least a few of the other City Watch books first so that you have a bit of a background on Vimes and the others.
Semi-random quote of the:
“You’d like Freedom, Truth, and Justice, wouldn’t you, Comrade Sergeant?” said Reg encouragingly.
“I’d like a hard-boiled egg,” said Vimes, shaking the match out.
There was some nervous laughter, but Reg looked offended.
“In the circumstances, Sergeant, I think we should set our sights a little higher–”
“Well, yes, we could,” said Vimes, coming down the steps. He glanced at the sheets of papers in front of Reg. The man cared. He really did. And he was serious. He really was. “But…well, Reg, tomorrow the sun will come up again, and I’m pretty sure that whatever happens we won’t have found Freedom, and there won’t be a whole lot of Justice, and I’m damn sure we won’t have found Truth. But it’s just possible that I might get a hard-boiled egg.”