I would advise you to read this. Terry Pratchett's fantasy novels are rarely stories about evil villains who are plotting to destroy the world, and this is no exception. This is a story about human defect with fantasy overtones. An evil ghost has returned to kill Tiffany, and has used its ancient hate to turn the people of the Chalk against her. This ghost exemplifies the worst in humanity. It is petty, it takes things out of context, it hates things which it loves. It is worse than the Queen, the Hiver, and the Wintersmith. The Clever Man is human.
On other fronts, Tiffany has had to come to terms with and address the fact that time has brought a wedge between her and Roland, her almost boyfriend.
The climax of this story is notably sad, and very dark. There is a happy ending, and I think that Tiffany was happy.
Of all the Tiffany Aching books this is probably the only one I would not give to a under 12 year old kid to listen on their own. I would want to be there to explain things. Tiffany heals a pregnant girl who was beaten by her father to the point of miscarriage, she prevents a suicide, she has to deal with an entire town turned against her. She acts responsibly in the face off all this. I think that this is one of Pratchett's bests books, and am happy that this is wrapping up the Aching series, as well as the Witches series.
What can I say, I love the Feegles and this is an excellent addition to the series. Cheers, Sir Terry!
If you love Terry Pratchett already, you'll love this book. He has a rambling kind of social commentary that is indeed very clever. The narration is great and the characters are well-developed. But there's not a strong plot. I just came off reading Garth Nix (who has the opposite problem) and I found this book to be a bit TOO light. I kept waiting for key developments, then I realized it's about the journey through the characters lives. I don't dislike the book, but it wasn't quite what I was looking for.
He's back in the game - after Nation, I was afraid my favorite author was too discouraged about life to write any more of the joy-filled work I so loved. He's been proving me wrong ever since and I am heartily ashamed of myself for doubting him.
Tiffany's adventures are perfect for young girls, unlike most fantasy marketed to young adults.
Characters are well-drawn. The village and its culture on the Chalk feels like I could book a plane ticket there, it's so real. Magic is well-developed and believable, as are its limitations. Tiffany's strengths and flaws are balanced and leave her as a lovable, yet strong, young woman and a great role model, too. I also love Preston, one of several new characters, whose mind works in its own unique way - that's quite a feat of writing, in my opinion, to show us so clearly that one character is so different from another.
In short, strongly recommended. Buy it for your niece, too, like I did!
Nothing better than some Tiffany Aching in your stocking. Terry Pratchett and Stephen Briggs truly make magic.
We loved the narrators performance. Our lives are the richer for Stephen Briggs' Feegles (sp? the trouble with listening instead of reading). I could have done without the music between chapters, but that is a minor complaint in an overall delightful experience.
Tiffany is the best female character we've come across in literature. She doesn't rely on some powers granted to her out of the blue, but on her own good sense, courage, sense of duty, and kindness
We love the whole series and will look for more books narrated by Stephen Briggs
Tiffany, Rob Anybody, Granny Aching (even posthumously).
Always thought provoking and entertaining, true to life: which is to say dire, beautiful and hilariously funny by turns, and sometimes all at once... Read perfectly by Stephen Briggs.
I always choose Stephen Briggs narrations first when buying Pratchett. Others disagree. I own almost all in download or CDs, and all the books. I Shall Wear Midnight is one of T P's fav books as well as one of mine. This book ties up a great deal and brings together most of the great witch characters for the big finale. And burping goats.