There’s been a lot written recently about Terry Pratchett, who died in March. I don’t think I could add anything to what’s already been said. I just wanted to highlight one of his works that I particularly enjoyed. I really enjoyed his Discworld novels, more a few years ago than recently, but that may have been my tastes changing.
But the work of his which really resonated with me and which I’ve never tired of was Nation, a Young Adult book that he published in 2008. To me it was one of those books that you could read on different levels, depending on whether you were an adult or younger, and in fact reading reviews, other people felt the same. Here’s the blurb:
‘On the day the world ends . . .
. . . Mau is on his way home from the Boys’ Island. Soon he will be a man.
And then the wave comes – a huge wave, dragging black night behind it and bringing a schooner which sails over and through the island rainforest.
The village has gone.
The Nation as it was has gone.
Now there’s just Mau, who wears barely anything, a trouserman girl who wears far too much, and an awful lot of big misunderstandings . . .’
The book explores themes of loss, acceptance and identity, and I felt it was an absolute bittersweet delight.
So thank you, Sir Terry, the words you wrote in Nation have stayed with me for the last seven years.