Reaper Man


This is another of the Death books and is set both in the Ramtop Mountains and in the great metropolis of Ankh-Morpork. We also get to see the senior faculty of Unseen University in rather militant order.

The Auditors have decided that Death has become too much of a personality and must go. In time, after all, another would replace him.

As a leaving present, he's given his own life timer and Binky. He finds that a Ms Flitworth is looking for an employee. One who's good with a scythe and he reckons that there is no one better qualified - after all he'd had uncountable numbers of years practice.

With a few misgivings, Ms Flitworth allows as he might be employable. She doesn't like the way he appears not to put on weight and there was the way she can't quite see his mouth move. You just had the memory of having his words in your head.

Back at Unseen U, Windle Poons was a hundred and thirty and it was time to die and the rest of the Faculty gave him a Going Away party to be proud of. However, the guest of honour doesn't turn up - Death seems to have missed the appointment and the party breaks up in embarrassment. Windle's spirit departs his worn out body but unable to go anywhere else, it returns to his body, which he is forced to re-animate. All the attempts of the Faculty failed to keep him down and even a fall into the Ankh failed to stop him.

Back at Ms Flitworth's, Bill Door's settled into the swing of things and the harvest's coming along fine, but his timer has nearly run out when young Sal's caught in a serious fire in the inn. Saving her life means that they are both soon living on borrowed time and a new Death makes it's appearance on the Discworld.

While Death's busy bringing in the harvest, no-one's dying and the pent-up life-force starts warping the fabric of reality round Ankh-Morpork. Strange wire trolleys start appearing in ever-greater numbers on the streets of the city. Where had they come from? What was their real purpose?

When they suddenly congregate in a great mass outside the city and a strange new building begins to take shape in the mass, part of the answer started to show itself.

Windle Poons and his fellow Undead find that they are largely immune to the effects of the new building and they are able to cause terminal damage to it as they rescue Arch chancellor Ridcully and his fellow wizards from the clutches of the mall-creature.

Meanwhile, Bill Door faces down the new incarnation of Death and pleads his case to Azrael to the horror of the Auditors.

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