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

by Terry Pratchett

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
10,763156260 (4.04)366
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. 61
    Good Omens by Terry Pratchett (Pigletto)
  2. 33
    On a Pale Horse by Piers Anthony (ijustgetbored)
    ijustgetbored: Similar theme: Death gets a replacement. Wry, with a healthy helping of social critique.
  3. 00
    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)
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» See also 366 mentions

English (147)  Spanish (2)  French (2)  Polish (1)  German (1)  Dutch (1)  Czech (1)  Swedish (1)  All languages (156)
Showing 1-5 of 147 (next | show all)
Giving it five stars because it is so beautiful, even though I haven't read it yet. ( )
  overthemoon | May 30, 2016 |
Having finished the final Discworld novel earlier this year, and having recently marked the first anniversary of Terry Pratchett's passing, this seemed like a good time to start a re-read of the series, or at least a partial one. Plus, a friend of mine is currently reading the Discworld books for the first time, and there's nothing like watching someone else discovering something you've loved to make you nostalgic for it.

I figured I'd start with the Death books, mainly because Death is probably my favorite character in the entire series. Well, OK, maybe it's a toss-up between him and Granny Weatherwax, but I remember liking the Death books, overall, a little more than the witches ones.

I was, however, a teensy bit nervous about revisiting this one. I remembered it as possibly my favorite of the series, but that doesn't seem to be a widely shared opinion, and it seemed very likely to me that the only reason I remember it with such fondness is because it's the point where I fell in love with the series, not because it was actually a standout.

Well, there may be something in that, but if there is, I don't care, because I loved it this time, too. Admittedly, the plot is slighter than most of the others, but that's not at all a problem, as this one is really all about the characters and the world-building. (And the witty writing, of course.) And I don't care if the ending features an almost literal deus ex machina, either, it still left me feeling all warm and fuzzy. There may be a couple of oddities here due to this being very early in the series and Pratchett not having worked out all the details of his world and its inhabitants yet, but they're pretty minor.

My affection for Discworld's Death has only been reinforced by revisiting his first appearance as a major character, too. I confess, I am something of a sucker for this particular character type: the inhuman outsider looking in on humanity with a sort of wistful affection but a limited amount of understanding. And Pratchett captures that in a deft, subtle way that hints at a lot of complexity inside that fleshless skull. (Or, y'know, wherever it is that Death keeps his complexity.)

Much as I enjoyed this re-read, though, there is a note of melancholy to it, too. Because it's impossible not to compare the prose in this one to that of the last few Discworld books, written after a particularly cruel and unfair manifestation of a particularly cruel and unfair disease got its evil hooks into Pratchett's brain. And the contrast is hard to ignore: the more recent books may be perfectly decently written, with occasional flashes of bright wit, but they don't remotely come close to the exuberant, playful linguistic cleverness that's evident in almost every paragraph of Mort. Death has it right: there is no justice.

Anyway. I will definitely be continuing to re-visit the Disc from time to time over the course of, I don't know, maybe the next year or so. Re-reading the entire series is entirely too daunting a project for me, I'm afraid, but I am planning on at least reading through the rest of the Death books, and then the City Watch ones

And I'm still sad that there will be no more Discworld books from Sir Terry, but this exercise has reminded that all the ones he already gave us are still sitting on my shelves waiting to be loved all over again, and that makes me happy. ( )
2 vote bragan | May 19, 2016 |
Reading in publication order, this is the fourth book in the Discworld series. It’s also the first book in the Death subseries. This was my favorite out of the four I’ve read so far.

For the most part, I enjoyed the story and was quite interested in it. There were some slow parts, and I thought the ending was trite, but the premise was fun. The general story is that a young man by the name of Mortimer, Mort for short, catches the attention of Death. Death is apparently going through some sort of a mid-life(?) crisis and wants a break, so he recruits Mort as an apprentice. Mort has problems with certain aspects of the job so things don’t always go smoothly.

I liked the characters, especially Mort and Cutwell. Rincewind made a brief appearance which I enjoyed. I also enjoyed the humor. Some of it is still a little over-the-top, but it doesn’t bother me to the extent it did when I first started the series. I think it’s also been toned down some and often fits more naturally into the story itself. The following quote particularly made me laugh, although I’m sure it’s nowhere near as funny if you don’t know the context, and I can’t really provide context without spoiling anything. With royal self-control, Keli said, “This is the fourth floor. It’s a lady’s bedroom. You’d be amazed at how many horses we don’t get up here.” ( )
  YouKneeK | May 15, 2016 |
Great! Death is one of the most endearing and truly terrifying characters ever. Pratchett paints a portrait of Death's personal life that makes the grim reaper a relatable and at times very tragic character. This is a story of new beginnings and self discovery. It's a story of love and devotion. But mostly it's a story why Death is the Death we all know and love. Really, you'll embrace the coming of oblivion with open arms when you get to know this lovable
destroyer of all things.

Also, the rest of Disc World is amazing! ( )
1 vote bemidt | Apr 20, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 147 (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 (29 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Pratchett, Terryprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bauman, JillCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kirby, JoshCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Planer, NigelNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Salmenoja, MargitTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wilkins, RobAuthor photosecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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[None]
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To Rhianna
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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!
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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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