30 August 2010

Book of the Week (70): "I Shall Wear Midnight" by Terry Pratchett

I Shall Wear Midnight is the latest outing for Tiffany Aching, the witch, and her allies, the Nac Mac Feegles, the small blue psychopaths with Scottish accents whom we first met in The Wee Free Men. This is officially one of Pratchett’s book for young readers, but some of the themes are definitely adult. When we first met Tiffany she was nine and deciding whether there was a future for her in witchcraft. In her latest outing she is 16 and the storylines have grown with her. Early on in the book, for example, she is having to decide what to do about a father who has beaten up his pregnant 13-year-old daughter, killing the baby. It’s a coming-of-age story, following her growing understanding of prejudice, how communities work and the hysteria of crowd mentality. Despite the gravity of some issues covered, the book is great fun, as you would expect from Pratchett, and there are welcome cameos from some of the senior witches and other entertaining characters we have met in the ‘grown-up’ Discworld novels. It’s another excellent read with plenty of humour.

Recommended by Anthony Reuben

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