Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Book 57 of 2012: Wintersmith

"'You're staring hard at me, Billy Bigchin,' said Miss Treason. 'Are ye afraid?'
'No, mistress, I wuz admirin' ye. I' does my heart good tae see a witch so... witchy.'

Page 62

I'm getting very close to the end of the series of Discworld books now, the latest that I've read was Wintersmith, another in the series featuring Tiffany Aching. In this one she accidentally joins a dance with the Wintersmith who subsequently falls head over heels in love with her and prevents Summer from returning. It's then up to Tiffany to convince the Wintersmith that he doesn't love her while she's kind of becoming Summer herself. It's a little bit complicated.

"They say that there can never be two snowflakes that are exactly alike, but has anyone checked lately?"Page 108

"The door knob on the door to the tower bedroom was rattled angrily. Roland de Chumsfanleigh (pronounced Chuffley, it wasn't his fault) carefully paid it no attention."Page 112

I really enjoyed this one. I probably say that about all of the Terry Pratchett books that I read but this one was very, very funny. I love it when you get a book that you find yourself chuckling to yourself as you read it. The one problem with the way the Discworld books are written is that you often end up with a running joke that can go on for several pages; I'd love to read out some of the funny bits to Mr Click but I'd have to go back and read half a dozen pages out loud for him to get the full impact.

"The Feegles didn't know the meaning of the word 'fear'. Sometimes Tiffany wished they'd read a dictionary. They fought like tigers, they fought like demons, they fought like giants. What they didn't do was fight like something with more than a spoonful of brain."Page 181

Although Wintersmith continues the story of Tiffany Aching, we get to see a few brief mentions from other characters who have featured in other stories; particularly from Going Postal. They're really a sort of blink-and-you'll-miss-it mentions and it doesn't matter if you've not read the other books. If you have it's a nice little nod back to what's come before, if you've not they're just interesting names. It's good fun to see if you can spot previous characters when they crop up in Pratchett's books, in this one Anoia (the goddess of things stuck in drawers) and Groat (a postman from Going Postal) both cropped up and I felt smug for a couple of moments because I knew all about them already.

"Some of the books they loaned were so old that the printing had been worn grey by the pressure of people's eyeballs reading it."Page 224

As with other Discworld books, I found myself struggling to pick which quotes to write into my book journal. As I said above, lots of the funny bits are gradually built up towards so you can't write out all of the bits that you like or find funny. Normally I try to write out five quotes, for Wintersmith I managed to squeeze in eight (but I had to write in very teeny tiny writing).

"Things went noisily and with a certain amount of fuss, but nothing like Mrs Obble had predicted, and the result was a baby boy, who was not a bouncing baby but only because Tiffany caught him; Annagramma didn't know how to hold babies."Pages 252-253

This one was also a little bit heavier on the Nac Mac Feegles which I love, they're a brilliant invention and I really enjoy seeing them crop up in the books. I suspect that their presence in the book is probably closely related to the number of quotes that I copied out. They're so hilarious and I suppose that having spent better part of my life living in Scotland I can appreciate the sense of humour (as well as the way that they're viewed by the other characters).

"Tiffany fought to stay awake. Some witches could sleep on a broomstick, but she didn't dare try in case she dreamed she was falling and woke up to find that it was true but soon wouldn't be."Page 327

I'm looking forward to the next book in the series because with each one a little more time has passed so Tiffany has aged a little more and learned a little more. Plus, as Tiffany learns more about being a witch, so we learn more about being a witch. It took me several attempts to get into the Discworld series originally, but it was the books featuring the witches that got me sucked in so I'm pleased to have found more books with them in.

"First, she visited Nanny Ogg, who had to be told everything. That saved some time, because once you've told Nanny Ogg you'd more or less told everyone else."Page 388

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