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Mort by Terry Pratchett
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Mort (original 1987; edition 2009)

by Terry Pratchett

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
10,984159256 (4.04)381
Member:DieterBoehm
Title:Mort
Authors:Terry Pratchett
Info:Transworld Digital (2009), Kindle Edition, 324 pages
Collections:Your library, Gelesen und in Besitz
Rating:*****
Tags:Roman, Fantasy, England, Discworld, GH

Work details

Mort by Terry Pratchett (1987)

  1. 71
    Good Omens by Terry Pratchett (Pigletto)
  2. 10
    Fluke, or, I Know Why the Winged Whale Sings by Christopher Moore (Zaklog)
    Zaklog: Although American, not British, Christopher Moore has a very similar sense of humor to Pratchett's. And if you like a story about an unsuspecting, innocent (and often clumsy) man accidentally becoming the Grim Reaper, you'll probably like Moore's book as well. Another wonderful characteristic the two authors share is their ability to combine a bizarre sense of humor with very serious moral subjects. So once you finish the newest Pratchett novel, be sure to check out Christopher Moore.… (more)
  3. 34
    On a Pale Horse by Piers Anthony (ijustgetbored)
    ijustgetbored: Similar theme: Death gets a replacement. Wry, with a healthy helping of social critique.
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» See also 381 mentions

English (150)  Spanish (2)  French (2)  Polish (1)  German (1)  Dutch (1)  Czech (1)  Swedish (1)  English (159)
Showing 1-5 of 150 (next | show all)
I pulled this dusty old gem off my bookshelves a few days ago because the SciFi and Fantasy Bookclub on Goodreads chose it as their selection to read for January 2013. I tried to pace myself, taking three days to read it in order to prolong the enjoyment. I had forgotten how incredibly good it is.

Mort is the story of a gangly young man who becomes Death’s apprentice. If you are familiar with Discworld, you may know Death - tall guy, boney, wears a black cloak, often seen with a scythe and in the company of a white horse named Binky. He is the anthropomorphic personification of the ultimate and final reality - and he likes kittens.

In this story, Death apparently wants an apprentice for two reasons. One is that he has an adopted daughter, Ysabell, whom he thinks could use some company. The backstory for this is vague, but it seems that Death either took pity on her or was simply curious after he ‘collected’ her parents. It’s hard to tell with him sometimes. He has a wonderfully odd way of looking at things.

The other reason to have an apprentice is that he wants a break from the ‘duty.’ This turns out less well than Death might have hoped. On his first solo mission to free souls from their mortal anchors, Mort does something wrong. He saves a young princess from the knife of the assassin fated to kill her, and this disrupts the interrelated web of causality and creates a cosmic paradox. The world thinks she’s dead, but because of Mort’s intervention, she’s not, at least not from a biological perspective. This leads to complications.

Like many of Pratchett’s books, Mort is full of clever wordplay and philosophical humor. For example, at one point Mort says, “I’ve heard about boredom, but I’ve never had a chance to try it.” This cracks me up because it’s dryly funny in the context of the story, but it also philosophically insightful, or at least I found it so. This book is filled with such little Easter eggs, little bits of prose that provoke a smile in passing but can be opened to find even more inside them.

This, in my opinion, is one of the best of Pratchett’s books, the worst of which are some of the most enjoyable stories I’ve ever read. I highly recommend it.

*Update - re-re-reread again.*
( )
  DLMorrese | Oct 14, 2016 |
Death takes on an apprentice. ( )
  jrthebutler | Jul 21, 2016 |
I have a love/hate r'ship with the Discworld books.
I enjoy every encounter I have with Rincewind, the Luggage, and the Librarian.
Carrot is mildly interesting
Bits of concepts throughout the series are clever.
Pretty much the rest of the characters, and books, annoy and/or frustrate me. ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 6, 2016 |
Another enjoyable light adventure in the Discworld, with Death – the Grim Reaper – taking on a human apprentice by the name of Mort (short for Mortimer) and showing him the ropes. Now onto my fourth book in the series, I find that as I become more attuned to their tone and parameters I'm enjoying them a lot more on their own terms. Mort is perhaps the best so far; it has great ideas regarding the nature of life and death (and natural justice), giving author Terry Pratchett licence to fully employ his considerable powers of imagination.

The plot did get a little busy towards the end (the one common criticism I have of the books so far) but Pratchett gets a lot of comedic mileage out of the idea of the Grim Reaper. He makes Death, the character, hilarious and sympathetic for the reader. The joke never gets old and a surprising amount of pathos is also wrung out of Death's situation and his interactions with Mort and others. All told, whilst the Discworld books still haven't matched up to their reputation, I'm really enjoying them. When they're as charming and unassuming and easy to dip into as Mort is, it's hard not to. ( )
  MikeFutcher | Jun 3, 2016 |
Giving it five stars because it is so beautiful, even though I haven't read it yet.
Edit: this is the first Pratchett I have read to the end, it is quite entertaining and sometimes funny and sometimes witty, and probably has some deep inner meaning about life and death that I find hard to fathom. But it is a beautiful edition, a book to fondle fondly. ( )
  overthemoon | May 30, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 150 (next | show all)
The plot leaps along, but the main pleasure is Death itself, as he progresses through a Job Centre interview to a spell as a short-order cook, and further hilarities. Mort should be required reading for all projectors of serious three-volume epic fantasies. Read this, and be subverted.
added by Shortride | editThe Guardian, John Christie (Feb 5, 1988)
 

» Add other authors (50 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Pratchett, Terryprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bauman, JillCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Byatt, A. S.Introductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kirby, JoshCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Planer, NigelNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rayyan, OmarIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Salmenoja, MargitTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wilkins, RobAuthor photosecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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This is the bright candlelit room where the lifetimers are stored - shelf upon shelf of them, squat hourglasses, one for every living person, pouring their fine sand from the future into the past.
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Book description
When Mort’s father tries to get rid of his dim-witted son by offering him up for apprenticeship, nobody seems to want him – except for an elderly skeleton in a black cloak who turns out to be Death himself! After being accepted into Death’s unusual household, and watching a few souls be guided into the next world, Mort takes over the duty for a night or two, to give his master a break. With one ill-placed stroke of the scythe, he will split history in two, create a paradox that only a powerful wizard can rectify, and send Death on a quest to find out precisely what it is about life that humans enjoy – with predictably hilarious results!
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0061020680, Mass Market Paperback)

Terry Pratchett's profoundly irreverent novels are consistent number one bestseller in England, where they have catapulted him into the highest echelons of parody next to Mark Twain, Kurt Vonnegut, Douglas Adams, and Carl Hiaasen.

In this Discworld installment, Death comes to Mort with an offer he can't refuse -- especially since being, well, dead isn't compulsory.As Death's apprentice, he'll have free board and lodging, use of the company horse, and he won't need time off for family funerals. The position is everything Mort thought he'd ever wanted, until he discovers that this perfect job can be a killer on his love life.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:08:03 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Unable to be objective, Mort, Death's bumbling apprentice, kills an assassin instead of Keli, the princess who should have been his victim. Reprint.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 9 descriptions

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