This is book number 11 in the Discworld series.
There's great Terry Pratchett, and then there's, well, even greater Terry Pratchett. Reaper Man is in the latter pantheon.
While I have read all of Terry Pratchett's Discworld novels and enjoyed most, none are as moving and funny as Reaper Man. Pratchett succeeds here in doing what many authors attempt and at which few succeed--using parody and satire to convey a powerful emotional punch.
Pratchett's hilarious and poignant picture of the anthropomorphic characterization of Death entices the reader into a false sense of security and then, when you are least prepared, unleashes a devastatingly insightful and positive message about the human soul and condition.
While I suspect Reaper Man may be somewhat inaccessible to those unversed in the context and language of the Discworld, it remains one of my favorite works of any genre. It is worth reading the entire series for this one title alone.
They say there are only two things you can count on. But that was before Death started pondering the existential. Of course,the last thing anyone needs is a squeamish Grim Reaper and soon his Discworld bosses have sent him off with best wishes anda well-earned gold watch. Now Deathis having the time of his life, findinggreener pastures where he can put hisscythe to a whole new use.
But like every cutback in an importantpublic service, Death's demise soon leads to chaos and unrest—literally, for those whose time was supposed to be up, like Windle Poons. The oldest geezer in the entire faculty of Unseen University—home of magic, wizardry, and big dinners—Windle was looking forward to a wonderful afterlife,not this boring been-there-done-that routine. To get the fresh start he deserves,Windle and the rest of Ankh-Morpork's undead and underemployed set off to find Death and save the world for the living(and everybody else, of course).
Sir Terry Pratchett was the internationally bestselling author of more than thirty books, including his phenomenally successful Discworld series. His young adult novel, The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents, won the Carnegie Medal, and Where's My Cow?, his Discworld book for “readers of all ages,” was a New York Times bestseller. His novels have sold more than seventy five million (give or take a few million) copies worldwide. Named an Officer of the British Empire “for services to literature,” Pratchett lived in England. He died in 2015 at the age of sixty-six.