Mort: (Discworld Novel 4) (Discworld Novels) Paperback – 1 Sep 2004
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"'Pratchett is a comic genius'" (Daily Express)
"'Pratchett's humour takes logic past the point of absurdity and round again, but it is his unexpected insights into human morality that make the Discworld series stand out'" (Times Educational Supplement)
"'Cracking dialogue, compelling illogic and unchained whimsy... Pratchett has a subject and a style that is very much his own'" (The Sunday Times)
"'He is screamingly funny. He is wise. He has style'" (Sunday Telegraph)
The fourth Discworld novel.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Mort is the first book where Pratchett decides to show the reader an up close and personal view of Death, one of the more mysterious entities of the Disc. And how well he does it. The potrait of Death Pratchett paints is not that of the spectre of all evil but instead a rather eccentric gentleman who has seen rather too much of life. Ths is Pratchett does with some excellent wit: for example Death's horse is named Binky.
The story itself is very well done, concentrating on Death and his new apprentice Mort. Mort cannot bring himself to do Death's job out of compassion and so ends up letting a dead princess live on.
The masterpiece of this novel is the character of Death. Pratchett turns religious convention on its head, making Death far from evil. Indeed he actually makes you feel horribly sorry for Death and the reader will be moved emotionally by Pratchett's clever but subtle way of showing the actuality behind the myth.
The reason I have not given this the 5 stars it deserves is because of its audio book status. While I enjoy audio books for when I am relaxing, I cannot give it 4 stars because a great deal has been abrigded from it - many of the sequences deemed unessential to the plot have been cut which is disappointing. However Tony Robinson does an excellent job as usual of narrating, giving all of the jokes a cynical edge which only enriches their comic value.
Terry Pratchett's Mort tells a rather simple tale. DEATH is looking for an apprentice. Young Mortimer, one of life's simple trusting souls is a young man with little career prospects. He is ungainly and spends a bit too much time thinking random thoughts. Mort's dad and relatives find him to be a well-intentioned but generally useless young man. Dad has been told that becoming an apprentice will get Mort off his hands and teach him a trade. So off to town they go for `apprentice day' in the market square. As luck would have it, DEATH arrives and takes Mort on as his apprentice.
Mort develops in the expected Pratchett manner. The relationship between Mort and DEATH, and the chores Mort performs to learn his trade, seem very similar to that in the movie Karate Kid. Shoveling horse poop is not immediately relevant to learning how to become the messenger of death yet Mort takes to his tasks well.Read more ›
Death - tall guy, somewhat underfed, big grin, carries a scythe - appears in more Discworld books than any other character. However, "Mort" is the first where his appearance in anything other than a very brief cameo - though, admittedly, he remains one of the book's support characters. The book's hero is Mort, the youngest son of a farming family living on the Ramtops. He doesn't quite have the look of a typical hero : although tall and overly-helpful, he's also red-haired, freckled and largely built from knees. His family specialises in distilling wine from reannual grapes - you plant the seed this year and harvest the grape last year. (With the wine, you tend to get the hangover the morning before and need to drink quite a lot to get over it). Mort's lack of talent in the agricultural field (boom boom !), however, is causing some concern for his father. Hoping someone will hire him as an apprentice, Lezek takes his son to the hiring fair at Sheepridge on Hogswatch Night. Although Mort is the last one hired, he is probably the most aptly named apprentice - given that his new boss is Death himself.
Despite Mort's initial discomfort with the position - he doesn't have to be dead himself and the bones look is entirely optional - he decides to accept the position. Death also makes it clear he doesn't do the killing himself - that's up to assassins and soldiers, for example - he just takes over when people die. (He has, however, been known to murder a curry). Life (if that's what you call it) with Death is very strange.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
another wonderful book from the sadly missed master
no spoilers, just read it and laugh
the first starring appearance of death!
Amazing!! first read of STP's offerings and literally couldn't put it down. Cover to cover in 3 days. Bring on another!!Published 1 month ago by Adrian R.
I read Mort soon after it was first published years ago and have recently re-read it, this time to my kids, who have loved the daft premise. Read morePublished 1 month ago by R. T. Lawrence
My favourite story so far.
Death's apprentice Mort, his small hick-up as he falls in love with a princess and accidently (on purpose) kills her assassin instead of her. Read more
A re-read from yonks ago and still as good and original as it was first time around. Fantasy characters firmly grounded in reality - even Death comes across as larger-than-life -... Read morePublished 2 months ago by j.