There are different sorts of books that make you happy. The swooning book, the hilarious weird book, the slapstick snort-out-loud book. And then there are the ones that have a bit of elements of all of those, and get under your skin to make you unquestionably, utterly happy.
This was one of those books.
The plot is really immaterial: Tiffany (from The Wee Free Men, which is also delightful, but in a different way) is off to learn how to be a witch, except it’s nothing like she thought it would be. That, and she’s hunted by a… thing… that lives off of ambition. Unfortunately, because it can’t be killed, it’s really up to her to learn how to defeat it. In her own special Tiffany way. With the help of the Nac Mac Feegle, of course.
There’s so much to love about this book: Tiffany’s strong will and the hilarious Nac Mac Feegle, of course, but there’s also Miss Level, and Jeannie the new kelda, and Miss Weatherwax, and Petulia… and…
I could go on. But it’d be simpler if you just read the book.
I almost forgot one of my favorite quotes from the book, because I totally and completely empathize:
It turned out that when Miss Level had asked Tiffany if she was scared of heights, it had been the wrong question. Tiffany was not afraid of heights at all. She could walk past tall trees without batting an eyelid. Looking up at huge towering mountains didn’t bother her a bit. What she was afraid of, although she hadn’t realized it until this point, was depths. She was afraid of dropping such a long way out of the sky that she’d have time to run out of breath screaming before hitting the rocks so hard that she’d turn to a sort of jelly and all her bones would break into dust. She was, in fact, afraid of the ground. Miss Level should have thought before asking the question.
There. Now go read the book.