I read this companion novel in one sitting and I thoroughly enjoyed myself. It only has 175 pages and some beautiful illustrations.
You can find my other reviews of Terry Pratchett’s novels here.
“They say that the way to a man's heart is through his stomach which just goes to show they're as confused about anatomy as they gen'rally are about everything else, unless they're talking about instructions on how to stab him, in which case a better way is up and under the ribcage. Anyway, we do not live in a perfect world and it is foresighted and useful for a young woman to become proficient in those arts which will keep a weak-willed man from straying. Learning to cook is also useful.
Nanny Ogg, one of Discworld's most famous witches, is passing on some of her huge collection of tasty and above all interesting recipes, since everyone else is doing it. But in addition to the delights of the Strawberry Wobbler and Nobby's Mum's Distressed Pudding, Mrs Ogg imparts her thoughts on life, death, etiquette ('If you go to other people's funerals they'll be sure to come to yours'), courtship, children and weddings, all in a refined style that should not offend the most delicate of sensibilities. Well, not much.
Most of the recipes have been tried out on people who are still alive.”
This book is set up as a cookbook and a book about etiquette by Nanny Ogg. Throughout the book we get the sense that this is still a draft because there are notes from the publisher and the managing director about certain not so innocent topics discussed by Nanny.
It’s put together very well. It makes sense that Nanny has the recipes from other characters mostly by some sort of blackmailing. The same kind she uses on her daughter-in-law for example.
The short introductions to the recipes are very funny. So much so I had to read some parts to my husband.
The illustrations by Paul Kidby are amazing.
This book is not meant for people who want a real novel. This is something for real Discworld fans, for those readers who want more than the next novel. It’s nice to have and to look through but definitely not essential. Perfect as a gift though since I surely wouldn’t have bought it myself but I love having it.
The recipes are real, and based on the ingredients they should all work just fine. I will try them some day.