This review was originally posted at Goodreads and imported here later with next to no spell/grammar checking.
This is a story about stories (a metastory if you will) — always a favourite of mine. And I’m a sucker for subversions of classic fairy tales, which this book has a lot of too.
It is about three Discworld witches (Granny Weatherwax, Nanny Ogg and Magrat Garlick) going to the Foreign Parts to stop a royal wedding. They’ve never really left their little kingdom and so hilarity naturally ensues.
It’s got an absolutely fantastic prologue, then a bit of a slow start (as seems to be common with these books) which however develops into a solid middle and a great ending.
It is supposed to be really funny, but my Mum is a huge fan of the Discworld Witches and so I’ve had all the jokes spoiled. Still, I’ve had a lot of fun reading this and it’s better than the previous two books (Equal Rites and Wyrd Sisters).
One slightly unfortunate thing is that the two important characters are called Granny and Nanny — words that sound really close together. Which meant I’ve spent a lot of time in a momentary confusion when "Nanny did this or that" and I thought the book was talking about "Granny".
The book is full of fairy tale references, and the Little Red Riding Hood scene in the middle was absolutely wonderfully done. Gut-wrenching, too.
Unlike the Watch sub-series of Discworld, I don’t think one needs to read these in order. Though technically a third book in the Witch series, it feels like this is the time it starts to solidify and starting here would be perfectly fine.