Welcome back Pratchettites! We’re already 3/4 of the way through A Hat Full Of Sky. It has gone by so damn quickly! This week, The Little Red Reviewer is hosting, so make sure to stop by her place and read her whimsical, entertaining, and insightful comments. This week covers chapters 6-9 and next week we’ll be covering chapters 10-END.
1) I got a chuckle out of Tiffany’s visit to ZakZak’s shop, especially the bit about the different styles of witch hats. What kind of witchy goodies would YOU buy there?
I was really into crystals when I was younger. Now, it is rocks, and crystals the showy kind of rocks. So, I would want to walk into ZakZak’s, stroll over the crystals display, and start doing some rudimentary field guesses as to what types of crystals they are. Such field tests involve tapping them with a geologists hammer, lightly, to get a feel for how hard they hard; attempting to scratch their surface; licking them; and singing in variously (but always annoying) high notes to see if and when they resonate. I would probably get strong armed out by the bouncer, that frog who has a large pink balloon tied to his wrist.
2) Inside Tiffany’s head might be the strangest place the Feegle have ever been. What did you think of Pratchett’s imagery of her mind, and of her safe place?
Even the first time I read this book, I totally got it that Granny Aching’s place we her safe place. I love that old, dead, ghosty woman. Given the over growth and mess the Hiver is making of her mind, I sure am glad the Feelge bathed first. Tho perhaps unclean Feegle might have shocked the real Tiffany out of her safe place to do something about it. Hmmm…..Perhaps that was plan B (PLN B?).
3) Poor Miss Level. Do you think she’ll ever recover from what happened to her? How is this going to change her relationship with Tiffany?
Since I have read this book more than once, I already know. But I distinctly remember being shocked dumb that Pratchett actually killed someone, and such a central character to this book, and not in a Death story. (By the way, the Discworld books that feature Death are my second favorites to the Tiffany Aching quadrology). And I remember thinking that first time around that Tiffany was going to have a very hard time forgiving herself……and I actually didn’t think too much on how Miss Level was going to treat Tiffany from then on. Shallow of me? Perhaps.
4) In the discussion Tiffany has with Mistress Weatherwax at the end of chapter 9, Weatherwax gives Tiffany some very important information about how to be a witch. Who would you rather study with to become a witch? Weatherwax or Level?
Perhaps I could start off with Weatherwax, get all the my bad habits beaten out of me, and then move on to someone easier, like Miss Level or even Miss Tick?
‘You hold that anger,’ Mistress Weatherwax said, as if reading all of her mind. ‘Cup it in your heart, remember where it came from, remember the shape of it, save it until you need it.’
I love how these few sentences take what most would call a negative emotion and shape into a tool to be used for good. Pratchett, and perhaps Mistress Weatherwax, get me, and they haven’t even met me. For that, they rock.
5) Any thoughts on how the story might end? Do you think the Hiver is gone for good?
Now I remember thinking that Pratchett’s editor must have cut out some pretty interesting stuff. I mean, we are left with Rob Anybody swinging like mad, Weatherwax showing up after consorting with bees, and then the next day dawns bright and clear, and oh, by the way Tiffany, here’s the milk bucket – go harass the goats! I figured Pratchett must be spinning in anger at his editor for having cut out how we got from Point A to Point B. But then I decided work be damned, and stayed up way too late reading to see how things ended. I won’t spoil anything, but I found the ending extremely satisfying.
Who else felt a bit righteous at what the Hiver did to Annagramma, giving her such a scare?
Tiffany’s Hiver harsh description of Petulia nearly matches me. I will leave you too guess which point isn’t me: none too clever, fat, still has a teddy bear, believes in fairies.
Mrs. Ah-wij (Earwig) would drive me nuts! Full of vapors, she is.
A trick ladder, the clown Floppo, and custard. Well, there’s a story of Miss Level’s past.
Daft Wullie has the brains of a beetle. Perhaps.
Some favorite lines from this sections:
‘Wash oot yer mouth wi’ hedgehog pee, Big Yan!’
‘All we need tae do is frannit a wheelstone on it and it’ll tak’ us right where she is.’
‘Aye, it’s no’ that good for the ship, havin’ tae drink oout o’ that pond after we’ve been bathing. It’s terrible, hearing a ship tryin’ to spit.’