The Shepherd’s Crown

I’m reading The Shepherd’s Crown, which has been sitting on my Kindle since launch day. I’d preordered it, but hadn’t had the heart to read it till now. My Kindle tells me I’m 90% through the book; I’ve tried to eke it out, I have, but it’s always the same when you read a Discworld book, you know.

You start slow, savouring the familiar characters, sinking into the Discworld again, so the first two chapters or so go by slowly. But then the story catches you, and before you notice, you’re a third into the book, and you think to yourself, “It’s okay, there’s plenty of book left, and anyway there’ll be another Discworld novel along in a year or two,” and you let yourself indulge a little because the ‘what happens next’ is so powerful.

Then the strands of story begin to come together and crash bang all that conflict begins to resolve and then you look up and go oh no, because you have less than one quarter of the book left. So you begin to slow down the reading, because oh god there’ll be another wait of a year or two before you have another deliciously new Discworld novel again.

Except this time, there isn’t, there won’t be, there can’t be. And I find myself unbearably sad that this is so.

“Do you not know that a man is not dead while his name is still spoken?”

Terry Pratchett, Going Postal (Discworld, #33; Moist von Lipwig)