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The Shepherd's Crown: Number 41 of the Discworld Novels Series Hardcover – International Edition, September 1, 2015
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"This isn't just a great Discworld book, it's extraordinary . . . A magnificent sign-off." -- Kat Brown * Daily Telegraph * "From the shadow of dementia, a brilliant novel shines: Terry Pratchett's last book is a funny, fearless farewell . . . This is a book worth reading twice in quick succession." -- Christopher Stevens * Daily Mail * "A joyful sign-off from a master of fantasy fiction . . . High-octane literary enjoyment." -- Nicholas Tucker * Independent * "Terry Pratchett was never so witty, direct and generous as in this, his final Discworld novel." -- Amanda Craig * Guardian * "The Shepherd's Crown is a sometimes sad, often funny and eminently suitable testament to the life and career of Terry Pratchett." -- David Barnett * Independent *
About the Author
TERRY PRATCHETT was the acclaimed creator of the global bestselling Discworld series, the first of which, The Colour of Magic, was published in 1983. His fortieth Discworld novel, Raising Steam, was published in 2013. His books have been widely adapted for stage and screen, and he was the winner of multiple prizes, including the Carnegie Medal, as well as being awarded a knighthood for services to literature. He died in March 2015.
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I loved this book and find it good enough to read again in a few years.
Left unfinished when he died, and so shorter than all of his more recent work, The Shepherd's Crown is also less humourous, with few jokes and laugh out loud parts, although I did have a few chuckles at the bits of satire woven into it (including even a Monty Python reference) and the amusing footnotes.
More pensive and reflective than his earlier books, The Shepherd's Crown deals with moving on and dealing with life, and doing what's right, and looks at things with a sense of optimism, which I suppose the literary world will need after losing such a monumental talent as Sir Terry.
Like the earlier Tiffany Aching books, this one is aimed at a slightly younger audience than the rest of his Discworld books. I can't help but view this book through the lens of a sense of mourning, and I wish he had stayed to finish it properly, as the end of it felt very rushed.
Throughout the book it builds up the threat that the elves bring to the world, and how dangerous they are even to a large group of witches, yet the ending happened so quickly that the elves never felt like they posed any danger at all.
I also think that Geoffrey needed a lot more character development, and I would have loved a slower, richer build-up of Mephistopheles the goat.
Ultimately, I have to conclude that this is the weakest of the Tiffany Aching books, and one of the weakest Discworld books, although this is almost certainly due to Sir terry's tragic death before it's completion.
It was with a sense of nostalgic mourning that I read the afterword, listing a few of the ideas that Sir terry was working. Personally, I would have given a kidney for a sequel to The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents.
It is a shame to end such a magnificent career on a somewhat low note, as this is the last Discworld book that I shall ever read for the first time. I said that this is a fitting requiem to Sir Terry Pratchett, and it is, as it deals with coping with loss, and as an aspiring author Terry Pratchett was (and is) one of my greatest literary role models, but I can't help but compare this to Unseen Academicals, which I believe would have made the finest tribute to his mark on the literary world.
and familiarity with the various witches (including Tiffany Aching) will certainly enhance your reading.
This work is a fitting finale to Terry's work. In it he brings the Chalk to Bad Ass (Nac Mac Feegles included) one last time. There are echoes of Equal Rites, but in reverse, with a new character. For me this brings a nice roundness and connectedness (is that a word?) to the Discworld Witch novels. He brings several threads from other novels in the Discworld series together but, as in 'the real world', only some are resolved. Between Endings and Beginnings are where a true witch stands, after all. One gets the feeling that there were other stories yet to be told in Terry Pratchett's unique universe. Alas, what they were and where they would lead we will never know.
GNU Granny. GNU Terry. GNU Discworld.
As a result, I'd class this as not really in the YA stream, but an effective successor to Steam.
It remains only to offer, however inadequately, thanks to Sir Terry for all the reading pleasure over the years. There are writers and composers and artists you are glad to have been co-existent with, and their loss is always hardest.
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Not acceptable. Audio CD was what I ordered.Read more