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Once Upon A Bookshelf

Where Fiction and Reality Meet

Reaper Man

Title: Reaper Man
Series: Discworld
Genre: Fantasy

Originally Published: 1991
Edition Courtney Read Published: 1992
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Corgi Books, an imprint of Transworld Publishers, an imprint of Random House
ISBN: 0552134643
Source: Purchased

The Story

Reaper ManFrom the back of the book:

Death is missing – presumed … er … gone.

Which leads to the kind of chaos you always get when an important public service is withdrawn.

Meanwhile, on a little farm far, far away, a tall dark stranger is turning out to be really good with a scythe. There’s a harvest to be gathered in…

The Response

Every time I read one of Pratchett’s Discworld books I ask myself why I haven’t read more of them yet. And then after finishing one, it takes me so long to pick up another. I have to admit that I get a little overwhelmed when I see the sheer number of books left to read in this series. It’s absolutely ginormous and so even just seeing a couple of these books in the bookstore stresses me out a little bit. But! I am determined to finish them all one day – reading this whole series is on my TBR bucket list!

I’m still working my way through Death’s books, and am now slightly more than halfway (3 out of 5) with them. I didn’t read them in the proper order – Hogfather was my first, with Mort being next, and Reaper Man being the one I just finished. I find that there wasn’t any problem with not necessarily reading these particular ones in any specific order, which is good for the casual reader. They have certain characters that you may have met in other books, but it doesn’t seem the plot in any of them specifically depends on you knowing what happened elsewhere. Phew.

This one tells the story not only of Death and how he goes off on an adventure and learns a little bit of humanity, but it also tells the story of Windle Poons, a Wizard who decided to reinhabit his own body when Death doesn’t come to collect his soul. Both aspects of this book were really great, and in all honesty I’m not sure which one I enjoyed more. Both story lines introduced so many enjoyable characters, and each had such wonderful adventures. They do tie together in the very end (and one is the consequence of the other at the very beginning), but until the end the two really don’t have any interaction at all.

Reaper Man started off a little slowly for me, just to get the action going, but once things really started moving I couldn’t put this book down. It was a lot of fun, with so much randomness happening.

I find that the fictional world that Pratchett has created is so vast that I feel I’ll never really fully grasp all of the wonderfulness in it, even if I read through his books so many times. Even in the few Discworld books that I’ve read, I can tell how well constructed this universe is. Pratchett seems to have put so much time and thought into how things function in this universe, and everything I’ve seen so far falls in line with what could be reality in this world – even though none of it could ever really happen in our world. Ever. It’s such a joy to read this and see how everything in his world relates to each other.

The Bottom Line

I definitely thoroughly enjoyed this, and already have my next Discworld book on my TBR. I will read it. Eventually.

Posted by Courtney Wilson @ 7:17 am August 26, 2015.
Category: Speculative Fiction
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