Aphelion Review # 23

The Wee Free Men

A Young Adult Discworld Novel
By Terry Pratchett

Review by Dan L. Hollifield

Type of music/work:

Fantasy / Humor
2nd young adult novel in the series.


Terry Pratchett
Published by HarperCollins Publishers
Published by HarperCollins Children's Books
ISBN: 0060012366

General impressions of the album/book:

Terry Pratchett once again turns his considerable talents toward writing books for young adults. In this volume he brings us a delightful tale of Discworld's Pictsies. Those tiny, blue-skinned, freedom-loving people who live for fighting. Oh, and drinking. Oh yes, and stealing sheep too. And as much as they hate servitude, they all know it is never a good thing to cross one of the witches of Discworld, even a young one in training.


Every time I read a Discworld book, I think that "this has got to be the best one ever" and every time a new one comes out, I find out that I was wrong. Terry gets better and better with each book. All the books in the series merit reading over and over again, if only to see what you missed before because you were turning the pages too fast. With this volume, Terry returns to his set of Discworld novels for young adults, teens, and children of all ages. Terry's characters are top-rate, they live and breathe and are as real as you and I are. The reader comes to care about them within a few scant pages, and by the end of the book you want to go visit them. The quality of the writing is so high, I'd have to invent new words to express it. You owe it to yourselves to read this book, and all the others in the series, just so you know that I'm committing a gross understatement when I say that this is one of the best books I've ever read. Within 2 pages, I was hooked and didn't want to put the book down for any reason. I read it at my desk, instead of going online. I read it at the dinner table, and you can guess how well *that* went over with my girlfriend! I carried it to the bathroom when I had to go... To work, when I had to go. I did not want this book out of my hands until I'd finished reading it! And then I wanted to read it again!

If you've never read anything by Terry Pratchett, you should! If you are looking for a good book for your kids to read, this is it! Fun, adventure, excitement, growing up, drama, loyality to one's family and friends, ethics, characters building strength through adversity-- It is all here.

Well? What are you waiting for? Go out and get yourself a copy! In fact, you may want to go out and get several copies to give out as gifts, once you've read this one. Go ahead, later on you can thank me for clueing you in to this great book. Background info:

Terry Pratchett has been a published author since 1971 and has more books out now than I can count. The first Discworld novel "The Color of Magic" was published in 1983. As I said above, there have been 29 other Discworld novels since then. A non-Discworld book, Good Omens, his 1990 collaboration with Neil Gaiman, has been a long-time best-seller as well. He has also written two science fiction novels and seven for younger readers.

Quoted from terrypratchettbooks.com: 'Regarded as one of the most significant contemporary English-language satirists, Pratchett received the British Fantasy Award for best novel (Pyramids), in 1989, was named an Officer of the British Empire "for services to literature" in the Queen's Birthday Honours of 1998, and received an honorary Doctor of Letters degree from the University of Warwick in 1999. His acclaimed novels have sold more than 28 million copies worldwide and have been translated into 27 languages. Terry Pratchett lives in England with his family, and spends most days at his computer, writing.'

Review Copyright 2002 by Dan L. Hollifield

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