Terry Pratchett’s Final Book Released With Boxes Of Tissues

Terry Pratchett’s final book, The Shepherd’s Crown, went on sale yesterday in the United Kingdom and Commonwealth at midnight, inspiring huge fan gatherings outside of stores. The release, roughly six months after the prolific author’s death, marks an emotional, final farewell with some shops in Australia handing out boxes of tissues with the novel.

The Shepherd’s Crown is the 41st book in the Discworld series according to the BBC. The series started in 1983 with The Colour of Magic. Since then, Amazon reports the Discworld novels have sold over 70 million copies and have been translated into 37 languages.

The Shepherd’s Crown will come to the U.S. on September 1.

As previously reported by the Inquisitr, Terry Pratchett died from a rare form of Alzheimer’s disease at the age of 66. The death was announced by Larry Finlay, managing director of Pratchett’s Transworld Publishers, in an emotional speech.

“All who read him know, Discworld was his vehicle to satirise this world: he did so brilliantly, with great skill, enormous humour and constant invention. Terry faced his Alzheimer’s disease (an ’embuggerance,’ as he called it), publicly and bravely. Over the last few years, it was his writing that sustained him. His legacy will endure for decades to come.”

Pratchett’s farewell was also announced over his Twitter page on March 12.

It was followed by one final Tweet.

The disease stopped Terry Pratchett from finishing his final book roughly 90 percent through, meaning that some great opportunities in the story were missed according to the author’s close friend, Rob Wilkins.

“It was a hard book to complete because Terry’s health was declining in the last year. But he was still enjoying the writing… He wasn’t able to polish it quite as he would have liked and there were a few ideas that he would have loved to have followed up on and he never got the opportunity.”

That isn’t making fans hesitate to buy the book.

One shop in Perth, Australia is giving away packets of tissues to each customer, because “this really is goodbye.”

According to the Daily Mail, the book reveals that Terry Pratchett was at peace with his future demise. The story includes Death coming for one of Pratchett’s own favorite, and most personal, characters, Granny Weatherwax.

Weatherwax calmly announces to the grim reaper, “well, you’ve finally got me, you old bugger,” before leaving her world behind.

[Image Credit: Silverlutra/Wikimedia Commons]