Back to the beginning of Discworld! Sort of. I had forgotten how much the world-building shifted. Yes, I said it was a bad one to begin with because of the changes. I remembered that Death was quite different in this book than the later ones. I remembered that the Patrician was quite different, too.
What I did not remember was that Ankh-Morpork was also quite different, and in fact very Lankhmar. Death had considerable shades of Fritz Leiber -- unsurprisingly.
This is a fix-up, not a novel. There are four stories, and each is a different parody. The first of Leiber and his Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser. The second of Conan the Barbarian -- one of the adventures where he used Lovecraftian monstrosities. the third of Pern. And finally we get adventures dealing with the reality of living on a disc on top of four elephants on the back of a turtle.
It involves the mistake of trying to introduce the concept of insurance to Ankh-Morpork, a talkative sword, hamadryads (both male and female), human sacrifice, the question of jumping off the Rim, dragons that are semi-real, the gods playing games with heroes, and much more. Rather more wild and wooly than the later works.