by Terry Pratchett
Book 4 of Discworld | Book 1 of Death
It seems rather true that each Discworld book gets more interesting as the series progresses. While this wasn't an entirely perfect read, and there were a few character quirks that kind of annoyed me, I found myself thoroughly enjoying the whole story, even as it took some time for me to actually figure out what the plot was in the first place.
Death picks up a new apprentice in Mort, and adventures and nonsensical conversations ensue.
I'm not entirely sure what the point of the whole apprenticeship story line was, but the rest of the book was quite amusingly entertaining, especially following Death around, as he tries to figure out the way of mortals.
My favorite quote from this book happened during the moments before one of Death's "jobs," as he and Mort mingle with aristocrats at a house party. While Mort is having a little bit of an identity and existential crisis by himself while learning the ropes of Death's work, Death is complaining about drink garnishes and fancy canapes. It was one of the most amusing, nonsense-laden, yet thought-provoking exchanges. And that last piece of dialogue in that passage from Death was...
THAT'S MORTALS FOR YOU, Death continued. THEY'VE ONLY GOT A FEW YEARS IN THIS WORLD AND THEY SPEND THEM ALL IN MAKING THINGS COMPLICATED FOR THEMSELVES. FASCINATING. HAVE A GHERKIN.
Death is quite philosophical without really trying. Of course, I'm all about fun, fruity drink garnishes, and savory h'orderves... so Death and I will just have to agree to disagree.
Another very enjoyable installment in the Discworld series, and I'm looking forward to the next one now.