The Shepherd's Crown by Terry Pratchett
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Upon the death of Granny Weatherwax, the elves seek to invade the realms of man once again. Can Tiffany Aching rally the other witches of Lancre and The Chalk and protect her two steadings (and the rest of the world)?
Here we are, the book Terry Pratchett was refining when Death finally showed up to claim him. PUT THE MANUSCRIPT DOWN, PRATCHETT. YOUR WORK IS DONE, or something to that effect. As a result, it doesn't quite feel finished but it was enjoyable just the same.
The Shepherd's Crown is a tale of acceptance and changing times, much like many of the later Discworld books. A male witch? Humans living alongside goblins? Elves trying to invade a world moving into an age of iron and rails?
Discworld goes out with a bang when Granny Weatherwax dies in the first few pages and the elves seek to take advantage of the power vacuum. Tiffany has to deal with being Granny's successor, herding the other witches, and deal with Geoffrey, who may in fact be the first male witch on the Disc, all the while contending with massing elves and their fallen queen, Nightshade.
Like I mentioned, Pratchett was working on this book when he passed and, as a result, it doesn't feel finished. While the standard wit and wisdom of Discworld is there, it's a little thin and feels unrefined. Still, I found many parts hilarious and others touching, par for the course for a Discworld book.
While I've enjoyed many Discworld books more, the final tale of Tiffany Aching and the Disc was quite satisfying. I'll miss you, Terry. Four out of five stars.
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