Oops, someone has massively procrastinated and is behind on her reading. But, I’m on Easter break now so I’m gonna catch up!

Week seven was ‘I Shall Wear Midnight’, the penultimate Tiffany Aching novel. I’m very terrified of starting ‘The Shepherd’s Crown’ because I know that was the last novel Terry Pratchett wrote, and he was incredibly ill.

Anyway, this book was fantastic – as usual. We reconnect with a fifteen year old Tiffany Aching who is leading her own witch life, getting busy helping the elderly and taking away people’s pain. She doesn’t get much sleep and she doesn’t have many friends, but she does have a lot of respect from her villagers. However, this book sees that respect hijacked by a destructive force – a dark spectre with burning holes where his eyes should be. I really enjoyed the symbolism of this, since the creature planted seeds of doubt into human minds, and slowly they would turn against witches, despite the positive help they receive from witches. I think it was meant to represent the original witch-hunting, where innocent women – and men – were killed simply for being misunderstood, or a little odd.

I  hugely appreciated the dynamic between Tiffany and her father, he seems to be the only character (aside from the Feegles) who consistently believes in Tiffany’s abilities. It was nice to have a little familial relief between the attacks against Tiffany. It was so frustrating to be solidly on Tiff’s side and to see such unfair treatment aimed at her – but obviously that’s the point.

The book does wind down pretty rapidly toward the end, presumably because Pratchett wasn’t sure if he would be able to write another novel. For example, Tiffany’s new love interest becomes integrated into her life very quickly at the end – time skips forward to see them happy together. But, I refuse to see that as a negative. The writing is spectacular, nothing can detract from that.

Here are some of my favourite quotes:

M1
‘… so she kissed him politely and did not tell him that he was unlikely to see a man doing the job that she did.’
M2
‘They thought themselves, and then dropped into your head in the hope that you would think so too.’
M3
‘Strictly speaking, you cannot have a half that is smaller than the other half, because it wouldn’t be a half, but human beings know what it means.’
m4.jpg
‘… speed was where a hare lived, shooting across the landscape like a dream of the wind – she could afford to sit and watch the slow world go by.’
M5
‘… a spill word is a word that somebody almost says, but doesn’t. For a moment they hover in the conversation but aren’t spoken.’

 

Hopefully it won’t be too long before my next book review! Huge apologies for falling behind, I’m mad at myself but I will catch up.

MJ x

Don’t forget you can follow me on twitter and instagram if you’re missing me between blog posts.

Posted by:MJ

20, studying at UEA in Norwich

2 replies on “I Shall Wear Midnight – Terry Pratchett

  1. I’ve been a Pratchett fan for decades and even though, as a middle-aged man, I am about as far away from being a teenage girl as it is possible to get – the Tiffany Aching sequence is my favourite. These are wonderfully human and moving books, as well as being hilarious. I still cannot bring myself to read ‘The Shepherds Crown’

    The folk band Steeleye Span recorded an album of songs based on the Tiffany Aching books – the song ‘I Shall Wear Midnight’ is just beautiful.

    Like

    1. I’m so glad you’ve kept that love of Pratchett! I can’t imagine my obsession ever going away. ‘The Shepherd’s Crown’ is next on my list, technically, but I keep bumping it because I’m scared for it to end and scared to see what Terry Pratchett’s writing was like so close to the end. It will certainly be heartbreaking, I think.

      Also, thank you! I’m going to give them a listen!

      MJ

      Liked by 1 person

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