5 out of 5 stars

Tiffany Aching has been building her reputation as the witch of the chalk. People were beginning to trust her and let her help them with their many problems. But somewhere out there is a tangled ball of evil and spite, that has awoken from its slumber. It is full of hatred and malice and one of the things that it has begun to do is to stir those old stories about the witches. The trust that she had carefully built is fading away.

She has been caring for the local Baron and when he suddenly dies in front of her she is suspected of his murder. His only son, Roland, is in the city of Ankh-Morpork and she travels there to tell him of his late father’s demise. On the journey there though she is attacked by the Cunning Man. Her arrival in the city is fraught, she is always shadowed by the Nac Mac Feegles and they manage to destroy one of the cities pubs and she and another witch, Mrs Proust, who lives in the city are arrested and locked up for their own safety.

After they are released the following day, Tiffany meets Eskarina Smith a rare woman who became a wizard. She explains where the Cunning man came from and the sort of horrors he is capable of. They return to their home on the chalk and find a soldier trying to dig up the Nac Mac Feegles home. She is arrested and thrown into the dungeon but escapes soon after.

As the guests start to arrive for the funeral and then the wedding of Roland and Letitica, herself a talented but untrained witch, they are joined by Granny Weatherwax and all the other witches who are there to observe the coming showdown between Tiffany and the Cunning Man.

They will be a reckoning. But nobody knows who will win.

I can sum this up in two words, just brilliant. I loved the way that the story circles around through the labyrinth he has created before it builds to the ending that is drawn deeply from folklore. It was good to have some of the Watch characters appear too. If there was one flaw it was the ending, it was over almost too quickly, as I was expecting a bit more of a showdown with the Cunning Man. Tiffany seems to build in stature though and there is one more book with her in, the final book that he wrote.

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