Wednesday, 18 August 2010
Review: The Wee Free Men - Terry Pratchett
There's trouble on the Aching farm - nightmares spreading down from the hills. And Tiffany Aching's little brother has been stolen away. To get him back, Tiffany has a weapon (a frying pan), her granny's magic book (well, Diseases of the Sheep) - and the Nac Mac Feegle, the Wee Free Men, the fightin', thievin', tiny blue-skinned pictsies who were thrown out of Fairyland for being Drunk and Disorderly...
The Colour of Magic (Rincewind book 1)
The Light Fantastic (Rincewind book 2)
Equal Rites (Witches book 1)
Mort (Death book 1)
Sourcery (Rincewind book 3)
Wyrd Sisters (Witches book 2)
Guards! Guards! (Ankh-Morpork City Watch book 1)
Eric (Rincewind book 4)
Moving Pictures (Industrial Revolution book 1)
Reaper Man (Death book 2)
Witches Abroad (Witches book 3)
Lords and Ladies (Witches book 4)
Men at Arms (Ankh-Morpork City Watch book 2)
Soul Music (Death book 3)
Interesting Times (Rincewind book 5)
Maskerade (Witches book 5)
Feet of Clay (Ankh-Morpork City Watch book 3)
Hogfather (Death book 4)
Jingo (Ankh-Morpork City Watch book 4)
The Last Continent (Rincewind book 6)
Carpe Jugulum (Witches book 6)
The Fifth Elephant (Ankh-Morpork City Watch book 5)
The Truth (Industrial Revolution book 2)
Thief of Time (Death book 5)
The Last Hero (Rincewind book 7)
The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents
Night Watch (Ankh-Morpork City Watch book 6)
The Wee Free Men (Tiffany Aching book 1)
Monstrous Regiment (Industrial Revolution book 3)
A Hat Full of Sky (Tiffany Aching book 2)
Going Postal (Moist von Lipwig book 1) (Industrial Revolution book 4)
Thud! (Ankh-Morpork City Watch book 7)
Wintersmith (Tiffany Aching book 3)
Making Money (Moist von Lipwig book 2) (Industrial Revolution book 5)
Unseen Academicals (Rincewind book 8)
I Shall Wear Midnight (Tiffany Aching book 4)
Snuff (Ankh-Morpork City Watch book 8)
The World of Poo
Raising Steam (Moist von Lipwig book 3) (Industrial Revolution book 6)
The Shepherd's Crown (Tiffany Aching book 5)
Discworld Related books:
The Discworld Mapp - Terry Pratchett & Stephen Briggs
Terry Pratchett's Discworld Colouring Book - Paul Kidby
Visit Terry Pratchett's website for more information
9 year old Tiffany has spent her life working on her family farm and as the youngest daughter she is often left to look after her younger brother Wentworth. When he disappears she knows it is up to her to get him back. Armed only with her wits and a frying pan - and with the Nac Mac Feegles and a toad to assist her - Tiffany must enter Fairyland and take on the Queen of the Elves. Entering a dark and dangerous world it is up to her to find Wentworth and bring him home.
I've mentioned before what a massive Terry Pratchett fan and I love the Discworld series. I originally read The Wee Free Men when it first came out but am re-reading the books featuring Tiffany Aching in anticipation of book 4 (I Shall Wear Midnight) which is releasing in September. Although this is book 30 in the Discworld series it is the first book in the young adult series featuring Tiffany and makes a great introduction to the Discworld universe if you have never read any of these books before.
I loved Tiffany from the beginning, she may only be 9 but she is already wise beyond her years. She is sensible, smart and not afraid to stand up for herself and her family. She has all the traits of someone who will be a great witch but as yet has had no training and has to rely on her wits to get her through. I'm looking forward to seeing how her character grows as the series progresses.
The Nac Mac Feegle (or the Wee Free Men) absolutely steal the show, I don't think I read a single page featuring them without laughing out loud. Terry has managed to write the characters perfectly making it impossible to read without hearing their Scottish accents. The Wee Free Men may only be 6 inches tall but they are larger than life, Rob Anybody and No'-as-big-as-Medium-Sized-Jock-but-bigger-than-Wee-Jock-Jock (how can you not love a character with a name like that?) jumped out of the pages at me - so real that I could almost touch them. The clan's favourite pastimes may be drinking, fighting and stealing but they have big hearts and would do anything to protect Tiffany.
This is a book I'd highly recommend to fantasy fans of all ages, it contains everything I would expect from Terry Pratchett - some great insights into real life wrapped up in humour with characters that will have you itching to come back for more. If you're new to the Discworld series (or already a fan) then I can't recommend the Tiffany Aching series enough.
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.