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A Hat Full of Sky [Turtleback]

Terry Pratchett
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Kindle Edition CDN $8.53  
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Turtleback, June 2005 --  
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Book Description

June 2005 Discworld
I, me. Who am I? There are some things a real witch would never do. Like stepping out of her body, as trainee witch Tiffany Aching does, leaving it handily empty for something ancient and horrible to move in. Now Tiffany needs her friends - Granny Weatherwax and the Nac Mac Feegle - to help her remember who she is, to help her go to the heart of her own self. To the absolute centre of her strength and power, where being a witch is so much more than just wearing a pointy hat ...
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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From Booklist

Gr. 6-10. Incipient witch Tiffany Aching, who confronted danger in The Wee Free Men (2003), faces even greater peril in this equally quirky sequel. She is taken on as an apprentice witch by Miss Level, who is one person with two bodies--an oddity to say the least. Also, Tiffany is stalked and taken over by a hiver, an invisible, brainless entity that commands and distorts the mind of its host, which eventually dies. Luckily Tiffany is strong enough to hide a section of her mind within herself, but she is otherwise completely under the control of the hiver. It's the cantankerous Wee Free Men (or the Nac Mac Feegle) to the rescue, with the help of Miss Level and the wisest, most respected witch of all. The chase is part slapstick, part terror, and in the end, Tiffany herself sets things straight. Pratchett maintains the momentum of the first book, and fans will relish the further adventures of the "big wee hag," as Tiffany is known to the Feegles. Sally Estes
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Review

"A great Pratchett strength is the sense that if the jokes were dropped there would still be a good, engaging fantasy thriller here" Independent "Fantastically inventive and humorous fantasy adventure. Fans will be sky high" Sunday Times "Pratchett's ear for dialogue is superb ... His deep feeling for landscape, animals, kindness and courage make his adventures deeply satisfying as well as clever" -- Amanda Craig The Times "Oodles of dry wit, imagination and shrewdly observed characters" Independent on Sunday "Pratchett weaves a tale that isn't afraid to detour into biting satire or to stop and admire a mot particularly juste, but that keeps returning to the critical question of identity ...By turns hilarious and achingly beautiful, this be just right" Kirkus Reviews --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Stitch This, Bigjobs ! Jan. 25 2007
Format:Mass Market Paperback
First published in 2004 and set on the Discworld, "A Hat Full of Sky" is the sequel to "The Wee Free Men" and sees Tiffany Aching return as the book's heroine. Tiffany, now eleven years old, has been brought up on a farm in an area on the Chalk. She has six older sisters, one younger brother, wields a mean frying pan, is very good with cheese and has already impressed the Discworld's greatest witch. Granny Aching, who dies when Tiffany was seven, continues to be a big influence on her grand-daughter. Granny was a shepherdess, very fond of Jolly Sailor tobacco and - Tiffany is convinced - a witch. Remembering how Granny said it was important to stand up for those who have no voice, Tiffany has decided she wants to follow in her footsteps.

The book also features an exceptionally rowdy, and thoroughly entertaining, bunch of fairies. The Wee Free Men, we also known as the Nac Mac Feegle, are a Pictsie race who were thrown out of Fairyland for being drunk, disorderly and rebellious. They are covered in tattoos, have red hair and blue skin and wear little other thank kilts and swords. An extremely fast and strong race, they are fond of fighting, stealing and drinking - Granny Aching's Special Sheep Liniment is a particular favorite. There have been a few changes since "The Wee Free Men", however. The clan now has a new gonnagle, Awf'ly Wee Billy Bigchin Mac Feegle, and a new Kelda, Jeannie of the Long Lake. Jeannie, as tradition demands, has married the Big Man o' the Clan, Rob Anybody Feegle. She is also responsible for possibly the biggest change of them all. The Nac Mac Feegle had once been afraid of reading and writing, believing it to be a dangerous type of magic. Jeannie now wants the clan, beginning with Rob Anybody, to learn how to read and write.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finding the right hat… July 25 2006
By Friederike Knabe TOP 100 REVIEWER
Format:Mass Market Paperback
One can only admire what must be going on in an author's mind to create stories like A HAT FULL OF SKY! Tiffany Aching, young heroine of The WEE FREE MEN, is back capturing the attention of young and older readers alike. Terry Pratchett has woven a new thread into the Discworld, adding a refreshing, new dimension to the already rich collection of characters, landscapes and goings-on. The Chalk, home of the Achings, is a remote rural region, far away from the bustle of Ank Morpork. The soft rolling hills, evolved in ancient times from the seas of the ages, are part of an area where reality meets magic…

While Tiffany, now 11, has been cautiously applying her special skills, inherited from her much-loved granny, she does not really understand what they mean and how to apply them. It is time to *learn * the witching business properly. With the help of Miss Tick, the headhunter for young witches, she leaves her beloved Chalk to take up "service" with an experienced witch, the complex Miss Level. Contrary to common assumptions that young witches might learn to fly on a broomstick or concoct magical potions, Tiffany's new life can only be described as tiresome and tedious… Her chores have more in common with a nurse's training as she follows Miss Level to attend to the old, sick and lonely. While she is much appreciated by their charges, Tiffany has a more challenging time to fit in with her fellow witches' apprentices. The trials and tribulations of the witches' teenage years are no different from those of "normal" girls: vanity, jealousy, peer pressure. Pratchett has a wonderful, sensitive touch when characterizing this motley group. Tiffany's search and acceptance of her own, real *hat * and the hat itself are wonderful metaphors for her coming of witch-age.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Dances with bees ** July 29 2004
By Stephen A. Haines HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
At a mere eleven years old, Tiffany Aching has won a war and lost a gran. She's killed the "Quin" of the Faeries - with a skillet! Her grandmother, a woman of Power, was a subtle force among the Chalk Downs shepherd community. With such a background, it's inevitable that she is destined for an interesting life. She's already been a kelda to the Nac Mac Feegles - the pictsies who scutter among the barns and bushes of the local farms. Now, she's been selected by the doyenne of the Ramtops' witches, Mistress Weatherwax, to be trained in The Craft.
Tiffany's clearly inherited some of her gran's Power, but is too young to understand or cope with it. Something else wants that Power. The hiver is a formless thing constantly seeking minds to inhabit. While not truly evil, its effect is deadly. It's inhabited Tyrannosaurs, sabre-toothed tigers and wizards. Yet it's still not sated. Tiffany's young, untested and vulnerable mind seems an ideal roost for the hiver. Thus, the story, told as only Pratchett can relate it, becomes a contest of wills - Tiffany's, the hiver, her mentor, Nac Mac Feegle and all.
So, is this just another simple fantasy about witchcraft and the eternal struggle between "good" and "evil" - a dark versus light dichotomy? Not in Pratchett's knowledgeable hands. The Feegle, Tiffany's staunch allies, are thieves and boozers, in strife with anything that moves. Miss Level, Tiffany's assigned trainer, leads a double life - and more than one of those. The Chalk Downs aren't just white rocky paddocks - they bear a history of life reaching millions of years in the past. Part of the Power is understanding that heritage, and perhaps putting it to use. And just why was the Uffington White Horse carved on a hillside so that no one could see it clearly?
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