“Ha ha ha, you kill me…”

February 3, 2008 at 1:40 pm (The Easy Chair)

In keeping with the upbeat nature of my recent posts, let’s talk about death.

Mine? Other people’s? Psych! This is a book review…

Among the eight million things on her to-do list, ThatGirl belongs to a book club. They get assigned a book and meet once a month to discuss. Recently she was assigned a book that most of the club didn’t like, but she thought of me immediately and passed it along. (“It’s right up your alley,” I was told.) The book? A Dirty Job by Christopher Moore.

It begins with our hero, Charlie, losing his wife. Charlie has a baby daughter and is devastated, of course. As he goes about his daily business, he starts noticing inanimate objects glowing red. Those with glowing red objects drop dead, usually near Charlie. (Or when his daughter says “Kitty.”) It soon becomes apparent to Charlie that he is the Grim Reaper.

The plot gets more elaborate, but I won’t spoil it. It gets a bit psychedelic, with an army of strange mutated animals rising (to a height of fourteen inches!) to help the Reaper in his time of need.

The best part? It’s got a tongue-in-cheek, wiseass style that readers of this blog might recognize. I rarely laugh out loud when reading on the bus; this had the bus driver asking me if everything was okay.

I like to read. I aspire to read lots of books. But at work, I’m interrupted every few seconds, and it’s hard to get into the flow of anything longer that a pulp newspaper article. I can read on the bus, but if there’s a view, I’d rather gaze out the window. So I don’t read as much as I should. This book provided a special challenge. I had to lock myself in the store office and get downright cranky with people when they came knocking. With 30 pages to go, a customer knocked, then spent 45 minutes of my lunch hour talking to me about life, the universe and everything. But he was drunk, and tipped me ten bucks for my time. I finished the book on the bus, just as it turned the corner to my stop.

It’s a book fans of this blog would probably enjoy. I’m going to check out some of his other stuff now.

I just had a realization. I’ve been glowing red the last few days. Charlie, you out there?

It would explain why I’ve been feeling yucky…

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