The word “Crivens” is usually used by Feegles, it can mean anything from “Oh my goodness” to “I’ve just lost my temper and somebody is going to get it”. The Nac Mac Feegles, the only Feegles we see in this book, are some of my favorite characters. Ever. XD The story isn’t about the Nac Mac Feegles though (sadly), it’s about Tiffany Aching (which is a good substitute). Tiffany is thirteen, and is training with a witch called Miss Treason. Miss Treason seems to be the big bad witch, seeing only through the eyes of others, working at her loom most of the time, add to that the fact that she has two skulls on her mantlepiece.
This is all part of the “boffo”. Witches can buy items from a shop to help with their reputations. And most of the rumors about Miss Treason were circulated by herself. XD Which makes her another of my favorite characters. When she takes Tiffany to see the secret dark morris, the morris dance that welcomes the winter, Tiffany finds herself drawn into it without meaning to do so. There she meets the Wintersmith, an elemental who simply makes the winter. He mistakenly believes her to be the Summer Lady, and is enchanted with her.
Tiffany accidentaly dropped her silver horse pendant, which her childhood friend (and potential love interest) Roland had had made for her, the Wintersmith uses it to find her and deliver gifts, gifts that were quite odd. Tiffany shaped snowflakes, her name written in the frost on windows, and then, one morning, ice roses. It’s really quite sweet actually. 🙂 Meanwhile, Miss Treason discovered the Nac Mac Feegles had snuck into her house to keep an eye on Tiffany. At one point, she became their kelda for a few days (the kelda is the boss woman of the clan, and after awhile, the mother of most of it), and if you’ve been their kelda once, they’ll take care of you forever.
Of course, this isn’t always the best of things, seeing as you might have little blue men (the Feegles) watching you twenty-four seven. Which means that they only (hopefully) turn away when you’re getting changed or having a bath. The main ones are Rob Anybody, husband of Jeannie, the current kelda, Daft Wullie (who is hilarious), Big Yan, Hamish, No-As-Big-As-Medium-Jock-But-Bigger-Than-Wee-Jock-Jock, William the Gonnagle, Wee Dangerous Spike, Wee Bobby, Not-Totally-Wee Georgie, Slightly Mad Angus, and Awf’ly Wee Billy Bigchin. I just love their names. ^_^ Especially Daft Wullie, Wee Dangerous Spike, and Awf’ly Wee Billy Bigchin.
I laughed myself silly at quite a few points through the book, like when Daft Wullie started talking and then the following happens, just so you know, only Rob and Daft Wullie talk:
“You ken I told you when there was times when you should have kept your big gob shut?”
“That wuz one of them times.”
That’s the basic gist of what they said in the scene. The Feegles favorite things are “drinkin’, boozin’, and fightin'”. XD When they appeared and Tiffany wanted to know the truth about I forget what it was, Rob said “Would you accept a wee bitty lie?”
“No!” Was Tiffany’s reply. And here was my favorite line….
“It’ll be interestin’, there’s dragons an….”
Explanations are a very dangerous art to a Feegle, and females are a dangerous species. XD There is the folding of the arms (“oh waily waily waily! Not the folding o’ the arms!”), and the pursin’ o’ the lips (“not the pursin’ o’ the lips!”), and the tapping of the “feets” (“oh waily waily waily! we’re doomed! not the tappin; o’ the feets!”) XD You gotta love them. 😛 And guess what they refer to Tiffany as? “The big wee hag”. Hag is what they call witches, and only they can call Tiffany the big wee hag.
But back to the story, even though I enjoy describing the antics of the Feegles. Miss Treason helps her with the Wintersmith problem at first, but then she foresees her death, and Tiffany has to pack her a ham sandwich with mustard. This brought another of my favorite scenes. Witches (or hags) are able to see Death when he comes, so Tiffany sees him come for Miss Treason, who is 111 years old, she said she was 113 though, because 11 sounds so…. young. XD Anyway, Miss Treason reaches into her pocket and discovers that the ham sandwich’s spirit came with her, but not the mustard, and Death apologizes and says that mustard is tricky at the best of times. She asks about pickles, and he says that they never seem to make it through, she asks about chutneys, and he says that jam comes through. Her reply was “Jam? Jam with ham!” before Tiffany couldn’t hear her anymore.
So Mistress Weatherwax (or as Tiffany is allowed to call her, Granny Weatherwax) comes and takes her to Nanny Ogg, a very nice lady. So she starts living with Nanny Ogg, and of course, the Feegles find her. Granny Weatherwax discovers that the Wintersmith has been using the silver horse to find her again and again, so she tells her to toss it in a river. When Tiffany goes home for a bit, the horse finds her again. How? A fish swallowed it, and her brother caught the fish.
The story is great and there’s a lot of humor, which I like. 🙂 Plus, I feel like I know Tiffany now. XD I highly recommend this, for certain. ^_^