Nation, by Terry Pratchett

Terry Pratchett — I mean, ed Sir Terry Pratchett — is one of England’s finest humorists, ever. He’s written something like fifty volumes in his Discworld collection, all set on a strange world that actually is flat and contains some of the most humorous people in fiction. He’s sort of like the brain-child of Charles Dickens and Jonathan Swift, but on crack (in a good way). He’s also recently been diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s, and therefore has been slowing down his appearance schedule and writing. This novel is not part of the Discworld books at all, and was published mid-2008.

Mau is just about to be initiated from boyhood into manhood in his tribe, which lives on an island in the Pelagic Ocean, when a giant wave comes and kills everyone but him and the grandfather birds. Ermintrude (who quickly renames herself Daphne, given the chance) is thirteen and 139th in line for the British throne, and was traveling on a boat when the wave came and capsized her on the island. They are the only two humans on the island at first, and they have to learn to survive, both together and separately. Also, 137 specific people have died, and although she doesn’t know it, Daphne’s father has just been named king. She’s a princess now — but will her father or anyone else ever find her on the island? Continue reading Nation, by Terry Pratchett