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On a Pale Horse by Piers Anthony

On a Pale Horse

by Piers Anthony

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Incarnations of Immortality (1)

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3,739641,396 (3.87)71
  1. 30
    Mort by Terry Pratchett (ijustgetbored)
    ijustgetbored: Similar theme (Death takes on an apprentice): very funny, and not a bad place to enter Pratchett's Discworld series, if you've never encountered it before.

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English (62)  French (1)  Italian (1)  All languages (64)
Showing 1-5 of 62 (next | show all)
ON A PALE HORSE, the first book in the INCARNATIONS OF IMMORTALITY series, is a novel about a man named Zane, who finds himself taking over the job of Death after shooting the previous owner of that title. He must now collect souls and determine whether they should go to Heaven or Hell. Death, of course, comes on a pale horse, hence the title. Written by the well-known fantasy author Piers Anthony, the story takes place in current time, where one can travel by magic carpet or vehicle.
Along his travels around the Earth ending the lives of mortals, Death (Zane) meets other immortals such as the Devil, War, and Mother Nature. He falls in love with Luna, a woman whose soul must be taken, and he is clearly quite reluctant to take it. Apparently the Devil has made a deal for her soul which Death must break in order to be with his love.
More than a sci-fi love story, this novel delves into the different circumstances of death, and how dying people acknowledge it. Whether they fear it, welcome it or it takes them by surprise. The situations are all different and some are quite touching.
ON A PALE HORSE kept me very entertained, and I would recommend it to everyone! ( )
  BooksOn23rd | Nov 25, 2015 |
Very fun premise, and manages to tackle some tough subjects without becoming preachy. A little dated in parts, but that just adds to the fun. ( )
  bookwyrmm | Dec 19, 2014 |
At thirteen, Death was fascinating. Not because I was a morbid child per-say, but more that I'd lost family members and had all the questions a typical child does.
The novel’s main character, Zane, is a photographer who is about to commit suicide. He accidentally kills Death and now must assume his office. As you read through the novel, Zane (aka Death), has to learn how to deal with not just the elderly and the sick dying, but children dying as well. Death becomes both a curse and blessing, depending on who is doing the dying, and Zane learns quite a few harsh lessons when he takes up the mantle of Death. The series continues with other supernatural “offices” such as: Time, Fate, War, Nature, Evil, and Good.
It's an enjoyable read (the series), and this novel is the best.
Read the full review here: www.ravenoak.net ( )
  kaonevar | Nov 12, 2014 |
it was interesting. After reading Perdido Street Station the story seemed simpler in style and plot. But the plot was interesting and a quick read. I would read more books in this series. ( )
  lushrain | Sep 29, 2014 |
Piers Anthony makes a very interesting world mixed with modern technology mixed with cliché magic. The world has both cars and magic carpets, which at first seemed weird, but eventually I really enjoyed it. The beginning seemed to want to make a balance between the two, but as the book goes on it utilizes the magic system predominately. Death is very humanized in this book and I could see this as a TV show of death collecting souls. While the book itself may not be perfect, the idea of a compassionate Death and the interactions between him and the other Incarnations was really good. I listened to the audio book and George Guidall did a good job narrating. ( )
  renbedell | Aug 13, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 62 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Piers Anthonyprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Crisp, StevenCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Whelan, MichaelCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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First words
"Death," the proprietor said clearly, showing the stone.
Last words
Disambiguation notice
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References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
The Man Who Murdered Death

Shooting Death was a mistake, as Zane soon discovered.
For the man who killed the Incarnation of Death was immediately forced to assume the vacant position!
Thereafter, he must speed over the world, riding his pale horse, and ending the lives of others.

Zane was forced to accept his unwelcome task, despite the rules that seemed woefully unfair. But then he found himself being drawn into an evil plot of Satan. Already the Prince of Evil was forging a trap in which Zane must act to destroy Luna, the woman he loved.

He could see only one possible way to defeat the Father of LIes. It was unthinkable - but he had no other solution!
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0345338588, Mass Market Paperback)

When Zane shot Death, he learned, too late, that he would have to assume his place, speeding over the world riding his pale horse, and ending the lives of others. Sooner than he would have thought possible, Zane found himself being drawn to Satan's plot. Already the Prince of Evil was forging a trap in which Zane must act to destroy Luna, the woman he loved...unless he could discover the only way out....
The first novel of the INCARNATIONS OF IMMORATLITY series.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:35 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Zane belongs to a world in which the scientific revolution has been followed by the revolution of magic, and he is thrust into the role of Death.

» see all 2 descriptions

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