I must start by explaining my circumstances with this book, when I finished A Hat Full of Sky in June, It was hard for me, not going mad for need of a sequel. The need for it was so strong at one point I nearly brought a proof copy, and I never buy proof copies. So I am sure you can understand why I was there on the day Wintersmith was released, and it was REALLY worth the wait. It was far, far better then I thought it could be.
I am sure you know the story from Amazon's handy synopsis so I will just tell you what I loved most about it. I loved the romance. I loved the descriptions. I love the sense of subtle menace and fear that managed to even make ME feel scared. It really doesn't read like most Terry Pratchett books, that although full of brilliance tend to get confusing. This although not confusing, was not straightforward either, you may need to read some parts twice to absorb them fully, but on the first read it is a wonderful exhilarating rush of beautiful writing.
All of the characters in this story are developed and explored more, you find out far more about Tiffany here, Tiffany the young woman, rather than Tiffany the rather solemn child. Not facts, just more about her as a person, her character. That's what I love about Tiffany, she feels like a living breathing person. Roland, looses the whining and complaining and grows a spine, and we see what may, just possibly, be a softer side to Esme Weatherwax. And of course there's the Wintersmith. The titular character, and boy is he a worthy subject for a novel, his story is very, very moving, by the time I got to the end I was close to tears. Although he could interpreted as the villain, he is such as sad, tragic character, that you just can't help but feel sorry for him.
I began this book on Monday, and finished on the school bus this morning, if I didn't have college I would of probably been unable to drag myself away from the book if someone shouted 'The apocalypse is coming!' I'd probably just stay there and die, it WAS that good.
So if I haven't hammered the point home, buy Wintersmith, you won't be sorry for doing so (and please ignore the fact that it is technically a children's book, it's wonderful that children can get access to gold like this but it can be off putting for adults who think 'children's fiction' is below them.)!
Please rate my review if you have the time!