Review: The Wee Free Men (Discworld Book 36 of 49ish)

The Wee Free Men (Discworld, #30) - Terry Pratchett

The Wee Free Men is the first book in the Tiffany Aching subseries of Discworld.  Calling it “young adult” might be a stretch since the protagonist is nine and I thought the story seemed suitable for a younger audience.  On the other hand, as with many children protagonists, she probably behaved as if she were older than a typical nine-year-old.  In any case, the story was entertaining enough for an adult to enjoy and I did enjoy it quite a bit.

 

The story is set in a small farming community, where witchcraft is frowned upon.  Tiffany, whose late grandmother was possibly a witch, seems to have some skills in that area herself.  Those skills are put to the test when creatures from another world start showing up near Tiffany’s home.  Without any other witches living nearby, she must try to deal with things herself until more experienced witches can arrive.  Fortunately, she does have a ‘little’ help in the meantime.

 

Tiffany Aching is a good character, easy to sympathize with and root for.  I also really enjoyed the Nac Mac Feegles who are the “Wee Free Men” referenced in the title.  They, and to some extent the talking toad, were a lot of fun. There wasn’t as much satire and puns in this book, but it did have some light humor.

 

A shockingly observant person might notice that my total “book” count crept down again by one number (from “50ish” to “49ish”).  As a reminder, this count includes each individual story on my list, including short stories, for simplicity’s sake.  The other day, I was looking ahead on my list and discovered that Where’s My Cow? isn’t easily available for me.  My library system doesn’t have any copies at any branch, and there isn’t a Kindle edition available.  I don’t want to purchase a physical copy.  Since it appears to be a 32-page illustrated children’s book, I’ve decided that the 5-10 minutes I spent searching for it was probably already more effort than was warranted and I decided to just cross it off the list.  I'm sure it's very cute, but nothing of that length is likely to stick with me very long anyway.