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Author Topic: The Wee Free Men - Chapters 8 - 11  (Read 2463 times)

Offline Nighteyes

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The Wee Free Men - Chapters 8 - 11
« on: April 16, 2015, 09:57:21 PM »
Okay. Week 3.  I actually read this a while back now (well a couple of weeks ago.)  Have made notes though about fairyland in this YA novel being a twisted nightmarish version of Wonderland or Oz. Though there again you could argue that both those worlds are quite nightmarish in their ways. (Side note: have a new edition of Alice in Wonderland to read illustrated by the brilliant Antony Browne.) Certainly though fairyland is not a world that any young reader would want to escape too - whereas I remember as a young pup have believing that one day I would find a magical doorway to my own Narnia.  I think what is so disorientating in Fairyland is how Tiffany keeps becoming trapped within dreams and not knowing what is and what isn't real. Also how hilarious is it when she loses the Nac Mac Feegle and it turns out they had stayed behind to drink at the ball!

I jotted down again about headology (love how Tiffany starts developing third thought!)  And what a grwat dilemia Pratchett gives her as voiced by the queen: are witches essentially selfish?  It certainly gave me pause for thought.

I am going to ask you all why this Discworld novel is categorised as YA.  For me I would say because it is about a young girl overcoming fear, realising adults can be children trapped in adult's bodies, as well as being about the brother and sister bond (which is such an important relationship at that age.)

Sorry these are just jottings. Will add some quotes I highlighted in the text over the weekend. (Back to term time now so just don't have the time I had over the Easter break.)
                                                 
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Offline Arry

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Re: The Wee Free Men - Chapters 8 - 11
« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2015, 09:48:50 PM »
I am going to ask you all why this Discworld novel is categorised as YA.  For me I would say because it is about a young girl overcoming fear, realising adults can be children trapped in adult's bodies, as well as being about the brother and sister bond (which is such an important relationship at that age.)

I think it is because it's a great story for kids. I think there are many things in here that are presented in a way for younger readers to pick up and think about. The mentions of grief and loss and perception versus reality. But all of it is done in a way where it is a fun adventure story with comic relief and interesting/strange things going on to hold a younger reader's attention. Tiffany is a girl that kids can relate to, as well as respect (and aspire to be).
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Offline ultamentkiller

Re: The Wee Free Men - Chapters 8 - 11
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2015, 05:11:01 AM »
I pretty much have the same answer as far as why this is considered YA. I don't really see any adult themes in here, although it's certainly a book everyone can enjoy.
I was happy to see the pace of the chapters pick up a good bit. I was very confused at first when she "woke up". I like the dromes. Sometimes I wish I could just walk into my dreams, preferably the good ones.
I liked the Nac Mac Feegle being away for a bit. It forced Tiffany to do some stuff on her own, since the toad wasn't much help. Also, her little brother being upset about too much candy was a nice touch. I liked the way certain details of the scene didn't become clear until you looked closely at them as well.
The big lesson I got from these chapters? Even when you're running, and you think you know where you're going, always keep your eyes open.
Can't wait to read chapter 12. You've got me on a bit of a cliffhanger.

Offline Nino

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The Wee Free Men - Chapters 8 - 11
« Reply #3 on: April 27, 2015, 04:34:35 PM »
So now perception vs reality becomes "real". It's nice that Praychett stays on the same theme. Now the only way out is to see what is realy there, not what she think is there. Yet, what is realy there might be hidden. (Which is not a too bad life lesson so by the way.)

I also thought the bit where the queen taunts Tiffany was good. Where the queen says that it wasn't Tiffany's fault and the bad choices she made was the fault of other things and bad influences etc. Since the queen is the bad guy here what she says are lies. And there is a definite lesson in this. Sometimes we need to see the reality - and not blame other things and people for our faults.

Quite a few bits in the book turns out to be good fables.

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The Wee Free Men - Chapters 8 - 11
« Reply #4 on: April 27, 2015, 04:35:53 PM »

I liked the Nac Mac Feegle being away for a bit. It forced Tiffany to do some stuff on her own, since the toad wasn't much help. Also, her little brother being upset about too much candy was a nice touch. I liked the way certain details of the scene didn't become clear until you looked closely at them as well.

Yes. Yes. And yes!

Offline Nighteyes

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Re: The Wee Free Men - Chapters 8 - 11
« Reply #5 on: April 27, 2015, 07:17:40 PM »
So now perception vs reality becomes "real". It's nice that Praychett stays on the same theme. Now the only way out is to see what is realy there, not what she think is there. Yet, what is realy there might be hidden. (Which is not a too bad life lesson so by the way.)

I also thought the bit where the queen taunts Tiffany was good. Where the queen says that it wasn't Tiffany's fault and the bad choices she made was the fault of other things and bad influences etc. Since the queen is the bad guy here what she says are lies. And there is a definite lesson in this. Sometimes we need to see the reality - and not blame other things and people for our faults.

Quite a few bits in the book turns out to be good fables.

Ahhh yes. First sight becomes crucial and this is of course what makes Tiffany a witch.  (Next instalment though we explore the dangers of first sight and there is an amazing quote I ll throw at you then as it becomes a recurring quote as the series continues.)

And yes. The queen is very manipulative and it is to Tiffany's credit that the second (or third ) thought kicks in and keeps her steady in the face of the queen's very believable manipulations.

And definitely agree that Pratchett uses the Nac Mac Feegle sparingly, in the hands of a lesser writer they would become a 'get out of jail free' card.

Thanks for both of your contributions and hope you both continue on with the series after.
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Offline xiagan

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Re: The Wee Free Men - Chapters 8 - 11
« Reply #6 on: May 05, 2015, 09:46:35 PM »
Okay. Week 3.  I actually read this a while back now (well a couple of weeks ago.)  Have made notes though about fairyland in this YA novel being a twisted nightmarish version of Wonderland or Oz. Though there again you could argue that both those worlds are quite nightmarish in their ways. (Side note: have a new edition of Alice in Wonderland to read illustrated by the brilliant Antony Browne.) Certainly though fairyland is not a world that any young reader would want to escape too - whereas I remember as a young pup have believing that one day I would find a magical doorway to my own Narnia.
I had to think of something from Pratchett's "Lords and Ladies" here:
Quote
“Elves are wonderful. They provoke wonder.
Elves are marvellous. They cause marvels.
Elves are fantastic. They create fantasies.
Elves are glamorous. They project glamour.
Elves are enchanting. They weave enchantment.
Elves are terrific. They beget terror.
The thing about words is that meanings can twist just like a snake, and if you want to find snakes look for them behind words that have changed their meaning.
No one ever said elves are nice.
Elves are bad.”

Pratchett's fairyland shows how close dreams and nightmares are to each other and that it's sometimes hard to spot the difference or only notice it when it's too late.

I think it is because it's a great story for kids. I think there are many things in here that are presented in a way for younger readers to pick up and think about. The mentions of grief and loss and perception versus reality. But all of it is done in a way where it is a fun adventure story with comic relief and interesting/strange things going on to hold a younger reader's attention. Tiffany is a girl that kids can relate to, as well as respect (and aspire to be).
I agree. And most adults could profit from this too. Getting to terms with grief and loss isn't exactly something we're skilled in, no matter how old.

Also, her little brother being upset about too much candy was a nice touch.
Loved this.  :D

I also thought the bit where the queen taunts Tiffany was good. Where the queen says that it wasn't Tiffany's fault and the bad choices she made was the fault of other things and bad influences etc. Since the queen is the bad guy here what she says are lies. And there is a definite lesson in this. Sometimes we need to see the reality - and not blame other things and people for our faults.
There is a scene later on (no spoilers) where somebody says "I didn't do it, the drink did it!". But it's never the drink, it's always you. And it's pretty cool that Tiff realizes this and takes responsibility for her actions.
"Sire, I had no need of that hypothesis." (Laplace)