Wintersmith: The Third Tiffany Aching Adventure (Discworld Series #35)

( 111 )


The third in a series of Discworld novels starring the young witch Tiffany Aching.

When the Spirit of Winter takes a fancy to Tiffany Aching, he wants her to stay in his gleaming, frozen world. Forever. It will take all the young witch's skill and cunning, as well as help from the legendary Granny Weatherwax and the irrepressible Wee Free Men, to survive until Spring. Because if Tiffany doesn't make it to Spring—

—Spring won't come.

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Wintersmith: The Third Tiffany Aching Adventure (Discworld Series #35)

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The third in a series of Discworld novels starring the young witch Tiffany Aching.

When the Spirit of Winter takes a fancy to Tiffany Aching, he wants her to stay in his gleaming, frozen world. Forever. It will take all the young witch's skill and cunning, as well as help from the legendary Granny Weatherwax and the irrepressible Wee Free Men, to survive until Spring. Because if Tiffany doesn't make it to Spring—

—Spring won't come.

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Editorial Reviews

Elizabeth Ward
Pratchett sets this drama in a frozen landscape worthy of Hans Christian Andersen's Snow Queen or the White Witch of Narnia, "everything glittering like tinsel," but leavens the dread with his trademark quicksilver wit. The man never met a convention—be it witchery, mythology, education or language itself—that he couldn't have fun with…A Hat Full of Sky felt slack and, in parts, silly compared to The Wee Free Men, as if Pratchett had written it at half-throttle. With Wintersmith, he gets this bewitching series brilliantly back on track.
—The Washington Post
Publishers Weekly
It's back to Discworld for a new Tiffany Aching Adventure, Wintersmith by Terry Pratchett. In a starred review of The Wee Free Men, PW called the witch-in-training "funny, sassy and spirited." Here Tiffany unwittingly attracts the attention of the titular spirit of Winter when she interrupts the Dance of the Seasons-and must enlist the aid of the six-inch Wee Free Men to put Nature back in order. The publisher is simultaneously repackaging the first two paperbacks to tie into this third adventure: The Wee Free Men and A Hat Full of Sky, with the same ISBNs. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
VOYA - Rayna Patton
Britain's second most popular--remember Rowling?--and certainly most prolific series author returns to the adventures of Tiffany Aching, apprentice witch from The Wee Free Men (HarperCollins, 2003/VOYA August 2003) and A Hat Full of Sky (2004/VOYA June 2004). Now thirteen, Tiffany is living with a 113-year-old witch called Miss Treason, who is blind but borrows other eyes (mouse, raven, Tiffany's) to see. Despite Miss Treason's reputation for extreme weirdness, Tiffany likes her and picks up a useful bit of witchcraft lore. For a witch, it is all about appearances, even appearances contrived with mail-ordered witch props. But then Tiffany foolishly joins a black Morris dance and attracts the elemental spirit of Winter. The infatuated Wintersmith quickly causes problems. Think Tiffany-shaped snowflakes and icebergs, not to mention quantities of snow. Miss Treason dies and Tiffany, still pursued by the Wintersmith, goes to live with Nanny Ogg, a witch with a past. Tagging along are the Feegles-blue, six-inch-high, tartan-wearing, hard-drinking pictsies happily dedicated to protecting Tiffany, particularly if it calls for a good fight. Ultimately the Feegles and a young hero called Rob go to the Underworld and rescue the imprisoned spirit of Summer, Winter's true consort, who replaces the Wintersmith, as summer inevitably replaces winter. Does it all make sense? Well, not exactly, but not necessarily either. Bits in the middle drag a little, but overall it is great fun-vintage Pratchett, in fact. Tiffany Aching fans will love the book, and newcomers to Pratchett will love it as well. In short, this book is not to be missed.
VOYA - Nancy K. Wallace
Tiffany Aching, witch-in-training, serves her apprenticeship with Miss Treason, living in her cottage accompanied by the Nac Mac Feegles, the diminutive blue pictsies, who protect her. When Tiffany and Miss Treason attend an arcane moonlight Morris dance marking the change of the seasons, Miss Treason warns Tiffany not to speak or move. Entranced by the rhythm of the drums, Tiffany ignores her advice and jumps right in, attracting the affection of the orchestrator of winter itself, the Wintersmith, who mistakes her for the spirit of Summer. Tiffany-shaped snowflakes start falling, Tiffany-shaped icebergs appear, and bouquets of ice roses decorate the lawn. The cold wind whispers, "Be mine." Tiffany is flattered but frightened, having attracted the amorous attention of an elemental. The other witches attempt to protect her from the Wintersmith's advances, but none of them anticipate the depth of his affection until he plunges them into an intense and endless winter in an effort to win Tiffany's heart. The Nac Mac Feegles save the day, restoring "Summer" to her proper place, freeing Tiffany, and bringing spring at last. While the Nac Mac Feegles' brogue may be tedious for some young readers and the pace here is a bit slower than most Discworld novels, the spells and witchery are loads of fun, and as always, the text is crammed with puns, double entendre, and absurdity (like a naughty cheese named Horace). Liberally laced with wisdom and humor, this fanciful farce follows A Hat Full of Sky (HarperCollins, 2004/VOYA June 2004).
When young witch-in-training Tiffany Aching joins in the dance of the seasons, despite being told not to, she catches the eye of the Wintersmith, the spirit of winter, with potentially catastrophic consequences. It's flattering at first to have snowflakes created in your image, but it's quite another issue when winter never ends and the besotted Wintersmith is determined to make himself human and claim Tiffany as his bride. It takes the intervention of the Wee Free Men, tiny blue-skinned gnomes who live to fight, to help make the world right again. In the process, Tiffany learns more about the real responsibilities of being a witch, and the power of becoming a myth. Funny, wise, and suspenseful, this is yet another wonderful fantasy from the popular author of The Wee Free Men and A Hat Full of Sky, two other Tiffany Aching adventures set in Pratchett's Discworld universe, as well as many other delightful novels. For all libraries. (A Tiffany Aching Adventure.). KLIATT Codes: JSA*--Exceptional book, recommended for junior and senior high school students, advanced students, and adults. 2006, HarperCollins, 336p., $16.99 and $17.89. Ages 12 to adult.
—Paula Rohrlick
Children's Literature - Gail Krause
Comedic little blue men better known as Nac Mac Fleegles assist Tiffany Arching, a thirteen year old witch-in-training, to make things right between the boy Winter, known as Wintersmith, and the Lady of Summer. Tiffany learns diplomacy from Granny Weatherwax, and she learns the secret of Boffo, that which makes a powerful witch, from Miss Treason. She assists other young witches in their learning and faces the boy Winter, who thinks he is in love with her because of her accidental interruption of the Dances of the Seasons. He tries to become human, but cannot. He acts like any other human boy smitten with first love, but goes back to his elemental ways when Roland, Tiffany's human young man, pays back a favor by rescuing the Summer Lady from the Underworld so that Tiffany can set the seasons right.
School Library Journal
Gr 6 Up-Winter must die, and Summer must sink into the ground; it is all part of the Story, and Tiffany Aching has danced into the middle of it. On the last day of autumn, Tiffany travels to the woods to witness the Black Morris, the traditional dance of the gods heralding the arrival of winter. In a moment of heedless excitement, her rollicking feet draw her to the music, and she crashes headlong into the Wintersmith. He is fascinated by the girl and proceeds to "court" her in his own fashion-all the snowflakes are made in her image and giant Tiffany-shaped icebergs appear in the sea. Meanwhile, Tiffany begins to show characteristics of the goddess Summer-the touch of her bare feet makes things grow. All the attention from the Wintersmith would be quite flattering were it not for the deadly winter that threatens the shepherds of the Chalk. As the situation is very dangerous and death is certain, the Nac Mac Feegles (along with an especially lively cheese named Horace) are directly in the fray protecting their "big wee hag" along with Annagramma, Granny Weatherwax, Miss Tick, and other favorites from past adventures. All are skillfully characterized; even the Wintersmith elicits sympathy as he joyfully buries the world in snow in his attempt to win Tiffany. Replete with dry and intelligent humor, this latest in the series is sure to delight.-Heather M. Campbell, Philip S. Miller Library, Castle Rock, CO Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Crivens! When almost-13-year-old Tiffany Aching, apprentice witch, dances into the Dark Morris, she dances into one of the oldest stories of all-the endlessly repeating cycle of the seasons-and wins the heart of the Wintersmith. As the lovestruck god piles Tiffany-shaped snowflake onto Tiffany-shaped snowflake, winter threatens to choke the world, and naturally, it's up to Tiffany and the tiny and raucous Nac Mac Feegles to put the story to rights. Pratchett once again delivers a sidesplittingly funny adventure that overlays a deeply thoughtful inquiry into the nature of narrative and identity: how the stories we tell shape our understanding of ourselves and of the world we inhabit. This is what readers will understand with their Third Thoughts; their First Thoughts will delight in the return of Tiffany, the Feegles and the not-quite-hero Roland, and their Second Thoughts will revel in the homely details of the relationships among the witches and the people they serve. As Wee Billy Bigchin says, "A metaphor is a kind o' lie to help people understand what's true." This one is verra weel done indeed. (Fiction. 10+)
From the Publisher
“Oodles of dry wit, imagination and shrewdly observed characters.”
Independent on Sunday

"Pratchett's one-liners, the comic dialogue of the Feegles, the satire about teenagers and the credulousness of the ordinary folk make for a characteristically entertaining mix."
—Nicolette Jones, Sunday Times

"Exuberant energy and humour."
Children's Bookseller

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780060890339
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 10/2/2007
  • Series: Discworld Series, #35
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 464
  • Sales rank: 80,696
  • Age range: 12 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 4.18 (w) x 6.75 (h) x 0.92 (d)

Meet the Author

Terry Pratchett

Terry Pratchett is one of the world's most popular authors. His acclaimed novels are bestsellers in the United States and the United Kingdom, and have sold more than 85 million copies worldwide. In January 2009, Queen Elizabeth II appointed Pratchett a Knight Bachelor in recognition of his services to literature. Sir Terry lives in England.


Welcome to a magical world populated by the usual fantasy fare: elves and ogres, wizards and witches, dwarves and trolls. But wait—is that witch wielding a frying pan rather than a broomstick? Has that wizard just clumsily tumbled off the edge of the world? And what is with the dwarf they call Carrot, who just so happens to stand six-foot six-inches tall? Why, this is not the usual fantasy fare at all—this is Terry Pratchett's delightfully twisted Discworld!

Beloved British writer Pratchett first jump-started his career while working as a journalist for Bucks Free Press during the '60s. As luck would have it, one of his assignments was an interview with Peter Bander van Duren, a representative of a small press called Colin Smythe Limited. Pratchett took advantage of his meeting with Bander van Duren to pitch a weird story about a battle set in the pile of a frayed carpet. Bander van Duren bit, and in 1971 Pratchett's very first novel, The Carpet People, was published, setting the tone for a career characterized by wacky flights of fancy and sly humor.

Pratchett's take on fantasy fiction is quite unlike that of anyone else working in the genre. The kinds of sword-and-dragon tales popularized by fellow Brits like J.R.R. Tolkein and C. S. Lewis have traditionally been characterized by their extreme self-seriousness. However, Pratchett has retooled Middle Earth and Narnia with gleeful goofiness, using his Discworld as a means to poke fun at fantasy. As Pratchett explained to Locus Magazine, "Discworld started as an antidote to bad fantasy, because there was a big explosion of fantasy in the late '70s, an awful lot of it was highly derivative, and people weren't bringing new things to it."

In 1983, Pratchett unveiled Discworld with The Color of Magic. Since then, he has added installments to the absurdly hilarious saga at the average rate of one book per year. Influenced by moderately current affairs, he has often used the series to subtly satirize aspects of the real world; the results have inspired critics to rapturous praise. ("The most breathtaking display of comic invention since PG Wodehouse," raved The Times of London.) He occasionally ventures outside the series with standalone novels like the Johnny Maxwell Trilogy, a sci fi adventure sequence for young readers, or Good Omens, his bestselling collaboration with graphic novelist Neil Gaiman.

Sadly, in 2008 fans received the devastating news that Pratchett had been diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer's. He has described his own reaction as "fairly philosophical" and says he plans to continue writing so long as he is able.

Good To Know

Pratchett's bestselling young adult novel Only You Can Save Mankind was adapted for the British stage as a critically acclaimed musical in 2004.

Discworld is not just the subject of a bestselling series of novels. It has also inspired a series of computer games in which players play the role of the hapless wizard Rincewind.

A few fun outtakes from our interview with Pratchett:

"I became a journalist at 17. A few hours later I saw my first dead body, which was somewhat…colourful. That's when I learned you can go on throwing up after you run out of things to throw up."

"The only superstition I have is that I must start a new book on the same day that I finish the last one, even if it's just a few notes in a file. I dread not having work in progress.

"I grow as many of our vegetables as I can, because my granddad was a professional gardener and it's in the blood. Grew really good chilies this year.

"I'm not really good at fun-to-know, human interest stuff. We're not ‘celebrities', whose life itself is a performance. Good or bad or ugly, we are our words. They're what people meet.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Terence David John Pratchett
    2. Hometown:
      Salisbury, Wiltshire, England
    1. Date of Birth:
      April 28, 1948
    2. Place of Birth:
      Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire, England
    1. Education:
      Four honorary degrees in literature from the universities of Portsmouth, Bristol, Bath and Warwick

Read an Excerpt


By Terry Pratchett


Copyright © 2006

Terry Pratchett

All right reserved.

ISBN: 0-06-089031-2

Chapter One

The Big Snow

When the storm came, it hit the hills like a hammer. No sky
should hold as much snow as this, and because no sky could,
the snow fell, fell in a wall of white.

There was a small hill of snow where there had been, a few
hours ago, a little cluster of thorn trees on an ancient
mound. This time last year there had been a few early
primroses; now there was just snow.

Part of the snow moved. A piece about the size of an apple
rose up, with smoke pouring out around it. A hand no larger
than a rabbit's paw waved the smoke away.

A very small but very angry blue face, with the lump of snow
still balanced on top of it, looked out at the sudden white

"Ach, crivens!" it grumbled. "Will ye no' look at this? 'Tis
the work o' the Wintersmith! Noo there's a scunner that willna
tak' 'no' fra' an answer!"

Other lumps of snow were pushed up. More heads peered out.

"Oh waily, waily, waily!" said one of them. "He's found the
big wee hag again!"

The first head turned toward this head, and said, "Daft

"Yes, Rob?"

"Did I no' tell ye to lay off that waily business?"

"Aye, Rob, ye did that," said the head addressed as Daft

"So why did ye just do it?"

"Sorry, Rob. It kinda bursted out."

"It's so dispiritin'."

"Sorry, Rob.

Rob Anybodysighed. "But I fear ye're right, Wullie. He's come
for the big wee hag, right enough. Who's watchin' over her
doon at the farm?"

"Wee Dangerous Spike, Rob."

Rob looked up at clouds so full of snow that they sagged in
the middle.

"Okay," he said, and sighed again. "It's time fra' the Hero."

He ducked out of sight, the plug of snow dropping neatly back
into place, and slid down into the heart of the Feegle mound.

It was quite big inside. A human could just about stand up in
the middle, but would then bend double with coughing because
the middle was where there was a hole to let smoke out.

All around the inner wall were tiers of galleries, and every
one of them was packed with Feegles. Usually the place was
awash with noise, but now it was frighteningly quiet.

Rob Anybody walked across the floor to the fire, where his
wife, Jeannie, was waiting. She stood straight and proud, like
a kelda should, but close up it seemed to him that she had
been crying. He put his arm around her.

"All right, ye probably ken what's happenin'," he told the
blue-and-red audience looking down on him. "This is nae common
storm. The Wintersmith has found the big wee hag-noo then,
settle doon!"

He waited until the shouting and sword rattling had died down,
then went on: "We canna fight the Wintersmith for her! That's
her road! We canna walk it for her! But the hag o' hags has
set us on another path! It's a dark one, and dangerous!"

A cheer went up. Feegles liked the idea of this, at least.

"Right!" said Rob, satisfied. "Ah'm awa' tae fetch the Hero!"

There was a lot of laughter at this, and Big Yan, the tallest
of the Feegles, shouted, "It's tae soon. We've only had time
tae gie him a couple o' heroing lessons! He's still nae more
than a big streak o' nothin'!"

"He'll be a Hero for the big wee hag and that's an end o' it,"
said Rob sharply. "Noo, off ye go, the whole boilin' o' ye!
Tae the chalk pit! Dig me a path tae the Underworld!"

It had to be the Wintersmith, Tiffany Aching told herself,
standing in front of her father in the freezing farmhouse. She
could feel it out there. This wasn't normal weather even for
midwinter, and this was springtime. It was a challenge. Or
perhaps it was just a game. It was hard to tell, with the

Only it can't be a game because the lambs are dying. I'm only
just thirteen, and my father, and a lot of other people older
than me, want me to do something. And I can't. The Wintersmith
has found me again. He is here now, and I'm too weak.

It would be easier if they were bullying me, but no, they're
begging. My father's face is gray with worry and he's begging.
My father is begging me.

Oh no, he's taking his hat off. He's taking off his hat to
speak to me!

They think magic comes free when I snap my fingers. But if I
can't do this for them, now, what good am I? I can't let them
see I'm afraid. Witches aren't allowed to be afraid.
And this is my fault. I: I started all this. I must finish it.

Mr. Aching cleared his throat.

"... And, er, if you could ... er, magic it away, uh, or
something? For us ...?"

Everything in the room was gray, because the light from the
windows was coming through snow. No one had wasted time
digging the horrible stuff away from the houses. Every person
who could hold a shovel was needed elsewhere, and still there
were not enough of them. As it was, most people had been up
all night, walking the flocks of yearlings, trying to keep the
new lambs safe ... in the dark, in the snow....

Her snow. It was a message to her. A challenge. A summons.

"All right," she said. "I'll see what I can do."

"Good girl," said her father, grinning with relief. No, not a
good girl, thought Tiffany. I brought this on us.

"You'll have to make a big fire, up by the sheds," she said
aloud. "I mean a big fire, do you understand? Make it out of
anything that will burn ...


Excerpted from Wintersmith
by Terry Pratchett
Copyright © 2006 by Terry Pratchett .
Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 111 )
Rating Distribution

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 113 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 29, 2012

    I love it!

    It was amazing!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 10, 2012

    Fantacy book

    This book is greatbut it was alittttttttttttttttttlllllleeeee Confusing :p

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 24, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    love it!!

    terry pratchett is now officially one of my favorites! i love his style, it's fast paced, easy and fun to read, and tickles my brain!

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 16, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    very highly recommended for insight and fun and laughter

    Read it for great laughs then read it again for deeper insights to human behavior and growing up as a young person.
    But if it wasn't for Terry Pratchetts way of making me laugh so hard that at it seems to make lifes troubles bareable. Laughter is good for the soul.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 24, 2008

    A reviewer

    What a delight. This is a great story with lots of metaphors that symbolize the birth, coming-of-age, and life transitions not only for Tiffany, but the other young witches in training, as well as Roland the baron's son and the Feegles (in particular, Rob Anybody). In true Pratchett style and humor, the author manages to pull the reader in for remarkable entertainment and read about characters who are developed in even more detail than before. Granny and Nanny Ogg make strong appearances here (though Agnes is missing) and have you rolling with laughter with their sage advice.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 28, 2006

    Another Great Book

    I'm a long time fan of Terry Pratchett and even I can admit that some things he has written were better than others, but this book is one of the best. The characters are fantastic, the humor wonderful, and the setting is of course Disc World and how can you go wrong there? With this we see the continuing adventures of Tiffany Aching, the witch from the chalk. At nearly 13 she is finding out about love and life, and a few boys as well. One of whom is Winter. Plus there are chickens!(werk)

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    a reviewer

    Thirteen year old Tiffany Aching is an apprentice witch learning to use her magic to perform spells. People don¿t want anything to do with witches until they actually need them. Tiffany is watched over by Feegles who are little blue men who live in mounds in the earth and will do anything for their HOG (Witch). Her mentor is Miss Treason who is a hundred and thirteen years old and has a lot of knowledge.------------- They arrive to see the winter dance performed and the rhythm of the music is so strong that Tiffany jumps right into the middle of the dance cutting out summer. Wintersmith takes notice of the witchling and creates snowflakes in her images, makes roses out of ice and showers her name in the snow. He wants to be human so they can be together always.. Tiffany with the help of the Feegles must rescue summer in time for her dance with Wintersmith to return the balance of nature.------------- Terry Pratchett well crafted plot will appeal to teens as well as adults. The heroine is astute beyond her years and acts as a herb woman, a wise woman and witch depending on what the occasion calls for. Wintersmith is an interesting character who learns what it is to be human though he never will be one and his infatuation with Tiffany gives him a glimpse into a world he will never be a part of but he enlists no sympathy because he is an elemental who has a higher purpose to perform.----------- Harriet Klausner

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 4, 2013


    Nac Mac Feegle! Wee Free Men! Nae King! Nae Quin! Nae Laird! Nae Master! We willna be fooled again!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 6, 2012

    All Sir Terry!

    Usually wonderful read from Sir Terry Pratchett.

    Of course, ' to dree my weird,' (being Scots by descent), I am always
    delighted by (and quite proud of) the doings of the McFeegles!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2015

    O my goodness...what fun

    "Come on in. How's your feet?"

    Ok, already, stop laughing! That what my housemate kept saying as I giggled and snorted through this, the first Terry Pratchett book I have ever read.

    Tiffany Aching, the almost 13 year old witch-in-training has stumbled into the Morris Dance that sends Wintersmith away and brings forth the Summer Lady. However, somehow, Tiffany git drawn into the dance and messed it all up. And now, its time for her to take on the elementals, the Ferryman who crosses the River for 2 pennies, the giants that hide in our innermost fears, and the promise of spring as she tries to undo what a newbie witch doesn't quite understand....yet.

    Wintersmith is enamored with Tiffany, and he keeps trying to make her love him. Bur he's not a him...he's an elemental who catches things ...kinda incompletely. He thinks, after hearing an old children's song, that he can be human if he does what it says....but he never hears the whole story....

    With nods to Persephone, Greek myths, some very bad puns, and some side-splitting wee feegles, Pratchett weaves a deliciously funny story that anyone can love

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 3, 2013

    A must-read for all Discworld fans!

    Be prepared for the awesomeness of Terry Pratchett's works in Wintersmith; useful insight, laugh-out-loud humor, a bit of romance, and excellent combine to his book worth 5 stars :)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 26, 2013

    Awesome plot

    A favorite that ill always go back to

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 14, 2013


    True Prattchet

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 26, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 16, 2010

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