Another Column at MyShelf.Com
Beyond the Words, Past
A Science Fiction / Fantasy Column
By Jo Rogers

Terry Pratchett’s Discworld  

     Hello, and welcome once again to our corner of the universe. Today, we’re going to take a trip to fantasy land. We’re going to visit Terry Pratchett’s Discworld. This is a comic place like no other. Come along with me and let’s go take a walk in a fairy tale as funny as the ones my Dad used to tell.

The Wee Free Men
A Story of Discworld
Terry Pratchett
Harper Collns — May 13, 2003
0060012366 — Trade paperback
0060012374 — Hardcover
Young Adult Fiction (ages 12 and older)

Reviewed by Jo Rogers, MyShelf.Com
Buy it at Amazon

     Most science fiction fans are familiar with Terry Pratchett’s Discworld Series. Now, he brings the fun to the world of children’s books with The Wee Free Men.

     The farm where Tiffany Aching lived was not the average farm. An Aching has tilled the land for the Baron for centuries. Granny Aching kept things going until her death, especially looking after the sheep. Now, her father had it all to do. Tiffany and her sister helped, of course. But Wentworth, Tiffany’s little brother, was no help at all.

     Tiffany had gone down to the river with Wentworth, who she was babysitting. Her work at the dairy was caught up for the moment, and she indulged herself in some relaxation. After all, it was Tiffany who ran the dairy, because she could make better butter and cheese than her mother could.

     Then, she saw something in the river, something she had never seen before. Two men, no bigger than six inches tall, were climbing into a tiny boat. They were shouting at her to run, that something bad was coming. Tiffany was puzzled. The river looked as calm as ever. Then, she saw it. It was green, and had eyes as big as soup plates. A monster was not supposed to be in her river!

     Tiffany grabbed Wentworth and went to the house. After she consulted one of Granny Aching’s books, she returned to the river, armed with a stick, a bag of candy, the bit of string she always carried in her pocket and Wentworth. She tied the bag of candy to the stick and stuck in the ground on the river bank. Then, she waited. Sure enough, when Wentworth tried to get the candy, the monster, Jenny Green Teeth, raised herself up out of the water to grab him. But Tiffany was ready. She smacked Jenny right in the face with the frying pan. Jenny collapsed into the water and left.

     Unknown to Tiffany, a witch, was watching. Miss Perspicacious Tick had seen everything. She was truly astonished. That Tiffany Aching was a witch, she had no doubt. But Tiffany lived on the Chalk, and no witch could keep her powers on chalk. To grow a proper witch, she had to live on rock. Chalk was much too soft. Miss Tick had to investigate. There were worse things coming, and Tiffany wasn’t prepared to deal with them.

      After her visit with Miss Tick, Tiffany also saw the little blue men again. And then, Wentworth disappeared. Miss Tick had said not to do anything until she came back with help. But this was something that couldn’t wait. She had to find her brother. Armed only with her frying pan, the blue men and Miss Tick’s toad, she set out to rescue Wentworth.

     The Wee Free Men is a hilarious jaunt into fairy tale land. But how could it be less with a witch named Perspicacious Tick? That is only the beginning of a wild tale that had me laughing out loud. Mr. Pratchett has given us another good story that children and adults will love!

Discworld Series

You can find a list of Discworld books at Harpercollins by clicking here.

Be sure to visit's Terry Pratchett's website.


We must leave our happy corner now and return to ordinary living. Until our next trip, Happy Reading!

2003 Past Columns


© MyShelf.Com. All Rights Reserved.