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Death Trilogy Hardcover – 1998
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About the Author
Terry Pratchett lives in Wiltshire. His Discworld series is a publishing phenomenon. He has been awarded four honorary doctorates. He won the Carnegie Medal for the Discworld novel MAURICE AND HIS AMAZING EDUCATED RODENTS. He was made an OBE in 1998.
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Top Customer Reviews
Mort is apprenticed to Death at a job fair, because frankly he's so klutzy no one else wants him, not even his farmer father.
Now Death has a voice like "lead slabs dropped on granite" and He strides toward Mort, "black cloak billowing and feet making little clicking sounds on the cobbles."
Unfortunately He spoils His entrance by slipping on a patch of ice, and collapsing at His would-be apprentice's feet.
For some reason, Mort is not afraid of Death. He thinks He's weird and fascinating. Plus his father has told him that some hard-working apprentices inherit their master's business. Ummm...
Maybe not if your Master is immortal.
Mort is soon sent out on his own to 'release' dying souls from their bodies, and (this is the best part) he gets to ride Death's big white horse, Binky. He gallops to his first location, a small cottage, and finds a bundle of hay by the door with an attached note: "FOR THEE HORS."
Someone is expecting him.
"Mort" is full of strange and hilarious encounters between the world's most naïve apprentice and his sometimes unwilling customers. And just when he's beginning to get the swing of things, i.e. his sythe, he meets Princess Keli who is about to be assassinated in her own royal bedroom.
Mort saves her life--a huge no-no on the list of things Death's apprentice should never do. He and Princess Keli have got to work on her not-really-dead-but-not-really-alive predicament together, even if it means that Mort will have to fight a life-or-Death duel with his master.
Luckily, Death's daughter, Ysabell (Disworld's first goth, although a bit chubby for the part) has taken a liking to Mort. With Binky, Ysabell, and Albert (Death's cook) on his side, will Mort have a chance against the Destroyer of Worlds?
WHAT DO YOU THINK? HA HA HA HA HA!
Picture an enormous room chock-full of hour glasses (one with your name on it):
"...Add the sharp clicking of bone on stone, getting closer.
"A dark shape crosses the field of vision and moves up the endless shelves of sibilant glassware. Click, click. Here's a glass with the top bulb nearly empty. Bone fingers rise and reach out. Select. And another. Select. And more. Many, many more. Select, select. [Whew, the dark shape passed by the one with your name on it!]
"It's all in a day's work. Or it would be, if days existed here.
"Click, click, as the dark shape moves patiently along the rows.
"Because here's a small gold timer, not much bigger than a watch.
"It wasn't there yesterday, or wouldn't have been if yesterdays existed here.
"Bony fingers close around it and hold it up to the light.
"It's got a name on it, in small capital letters.
"The name is DEATH."
So, now that Death of Discworld, old Mr. Bones himself discovers he's about to shuffle off this immortal coil, bite the Big One, cease to exist, dissolve and leave not a rack of ribs behind---what's he going to do?
He decides to Hell with it (or to It with hell) and goes on vacation.
No Death means no one on Discworld can truly die, including a one-hundred-and-three year-old wizard named Windle Poons, oldest faculty member of the Unseen University. He is scheduled to pass over into the Great Beyond at 9:30 P.M., in the midst of a 'going-away' party that his fellow wizards are throwing for him.
A few seconds past the appointed half hour, Windle swigs his last rum and dies--sort of. But the Big Guy with the scythe doesn't show up, so Windle finally climbs back into his one-hundred-and-three year-old body. He's neither alive nor dead and what's worse, another faculty member has already moved into his room.
Read "Reaper Man" to find out how its two unlikely heroes, Death and Windle are finally reconciled.
Death's daughter, Ysabell and His former apprentice, Mort have a daughter, Susan Sto Helit who is packed off to boarding school with only faint memories of a Grandfather with bony knees and a friendly white horse named Binky. However, when Death abandons His duties in an effort to forget His past, the fabric of reality forces Susan into her Grandfather's profession (somebody has to do it), and she reluctantly takes up the scythe, Binky, and Death's obnoxious old cook, Albert.
Then a budding young musician of 'music with rocks in it' is scheduled to die in Ankh-Morpork's sleaziest bar, and Susan decides to save his life (shades of her father, Mort!). The rock star who is still alive after he was scheduled to die is driving a hole through the fabric of reality, so Albert, Death's cook sets out to find his missing Master.
"Soul Music" is packed with sly references to rock and roll stars of another reality and Death's attempt to find happiness as a short-order cook bring this trilogy to a satisfying end. You will also want to read a fourth Discworld novel starring Death and his granddaughter, Susan: "Hogfather" is near the top of my list of all-time favorite novels by this marvelous author.
Death is my favorite character from Terry Pratchett, and these three books were highly enjoyable for me. Mort is by far my favorite of the trilogy, although I do recommend them all.
My original order was 'cancelled' (Death Trilogy at four dollars ninety seven), and then advertised as being available for close to seventy dollars.
I wonder why.