Book: Wintersmith (Discworld, Tiffany Aching 3) by Terry Pratchett
Release Date: October 1st 2016
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Possible spoilers for the previous books in the series
Tiffany Aching is a trainee witch — now working for the seriously scary Miss Treason. But when Tiffany witnesses the Dark Dance — the crossover from summer to winter — she does what no one has ever done before and leaps into the dance. Into the oldest story there ever is. And draws the attention of the Wintersmith himself.
As Tiffany-shaped snowflakes hammer down on the land, can Tiffany deal with the consequences of her actions? Even with the help of Granny Weatherwax and the Nac Mac Feegle — the fightin’, thievin’ pictsies who are prepared to lay down their lives for their “big wee hag.”
Wintersmith is already the third installment in the Tiffany Aching arc of the Discworld series, and a great continuation at that.
‘I’m just Tiffany Aching, and I am Aching to go home.’
This book starts Tiffany at a different witch. Our young Tiffany, almost 13 now, makes a mistake. She dances in the place of Summer with Winter during one night. And in doing so catches the eye of the Spirit of Winter. I love how this is a story where Tiffany has to fix her own mistake. She gets scolded, but they still help her to a degree. Tiffany remains headstrong, doing things her own way. Yet she also wants to learn. Like in the previous book she is still vulnerable to insecurity. That did not completely disappear how that would not disappear with us, despite getting over some insecurities in that book.
I thought the plot was a bit slow at the start. It took quite some time to get going. It was interesting to see some more things of the witches culture I suppose. A funeral even. And also the play about the stereotypical way we show witches during Halloween for instance. The social interactions between the witches and the area and the people that they care for remains a fine balance and works differently for each area.
I liked how some of the characters from A Hat Full of Sky, mainly the other young witches, were seen, though sometimes shortly. Mostly I was surprised with the addition of Annagramma again as she was a bit negative towards Tiffany. She grows into the role she has to play, despite being too stubborn to initially want to listen to Tiffany and her friends. I liked seeing that and I actually kind of starting to like her a bit at the ending.
‘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 more than a spoonful of brain.’
But of course there are other familiar characters. The Wee Free Men play their part again. Like with Annagramma they are making their development throughout these books. Though in their case this has to do with reading which I quite enjoy seeming them do. Reading another book with written out dialect after this reminds me again how smartly Pratchett writes their speech out. It takes a few sentences but then you are into it and you can read their dialect without having to think about it. There is always a glossary at the start for certain words and phrases but not entirely necessary I think as you pull a lot out the context with these guys.
Roland also had more of a role to play in this book. I am glad we got a bit of his point of view and his daily life. His interactions with the wee free men were also quite entertaining to read because that part of the world is foreign to him despite his history with the fairies.
I also feel like granny Weatherwax’s cat had a great starring role. And yes, you too, cheese. Rolling cheese. I think that says enough for the humor again in this book. I had a lot of snorting sounds coming from me during reading this.