The Last Hero written by Terry Pratchett, illustrated by Paul Kidby. ★★★★
The Last Hero is a shorter, illustrated Discworld book. It’s short enough that you can probably read it in one sitting (I did). Do you need to have read prior Discworld books? It would probably help if you’re familiar with the characters, but I don’t think it’s a requirement for enjoying The Last Hero.
What’s really awesome about The Last Hero is that it’s illustrated. There’s tons of beautiful paintings and drawings of the Discworld and it’s characters. Kidby really manages to bring the world to life. There’s all these amazingly detailed touches, such as a parody of the Bayeux Tapestry.
“I DON’T HOLD WITH CRUELTY TO CATS.”
In The Last Hero, the aged Cohen the Barbarian and his hoard set off on their final adventure: they will bring explosives to the top of Mount Cori Celesti, center of the Discworld’s magic field and home of it’s gods, and die. Unfortunately, this will also result in the end of the world. Luckily, in Ankh-Morpork, the genius Leonard of Quirm invents a way to get to Cori Celesti before Cohen blows it up. Basically, this is Discworld’s NASA parody.
In terms of the story itself? This was not one of my favorite Discworld stories. It’s fun and entertaining, but it doesn’t go beyond that for me the way the best of Discworld does. It does cover “Cohen dealing with old age,” but that’s been done before numerous times.
Ultimately, I believe that The Last Hero works best for people who are already fans of Discworld and want to see it brought to life with Kidby’s illustrations.