Young adult novel The Shepherd’s Crown, plus a new book in the SF Long Earth series, are set to be the final additions to the late author’s literary career.
The late Terry Pratchett will take his fans on one more trip to Discworld, with a final novel set in his fantasy universe, The Shepherd’s Crown. The news comes as fundraising in Pratchett’s name has reached more than £40,000 in less than a week.
Starring Tiffany Aching, the teenage witch possessed of “first sight and second thoughts” who has appeared in four bestselling young adult novels to date, The Shepherd’s Crown will be the 41st Discworld novel. The follow-up to 2013’s Raising Steam was first announced at last year’s Discworld convention, which the novelist had been unable to attend, citing the “embuggerance” that was his early onset Alzheimer’s. His assistant Rob Wilkins read the first chapter to fans at the event.
The work was originally to be published this October. Illustrator Paul Kidby wrote on his blog in February that he was “currently enjoying drawing the art for Terry Pratchett’s next Discworld novel, which will be published in the autumn”. Following Pratchett’s death on 12 March, at the age of 66, Kidby confirmed to the science-fiction site io9 that the novelist had completed The Shepherd’s Crown last summer. But Pratchett’s publisher Transworld said on 18 March that a date for publication is not currently set.
Another Pratchett novel is also due out this year. The Long Utopia, the fourth in his science fiction series The Long Earth, co-written with SF novelist Stephen Baxter, is set in a universe with an infinite number of parallel Earths which characters can “step” between. It will be published in June.
The two books look set to be the final additions to a literary career that spanned more than 70 novels and has won the author millions of fans.