Who wrote this book and when?
Christopher Moore published this in 2006.

Has there been a film version?
Not yet. The man who did the first two Harry Potter movies has bought the film rights, however.

Who are the important characters?
Charlie Asher – a recently widowed beta male with a new daughter, he owns a second-hand store
Sophie Asher – Charlie’s daughter
Lily – a goth teenager who works for Charlie
Ray – an ex-cop who works for Charlie
Minty Fresh – a tall black man with a penchant for pastel green suits, he owns a music store
Jane – Charlie’s lesbian sister

What’s it about?
When Charlie’s wife has their first child, Charlie sees a strange man by her bedside right before she dies of a rare complication from birth. No one else can see the man, and when Charlie tries to resume his life, he finds that he has been chosen as a Death Merchant – someone who collects souls from those who are about to or have just died and passes them on to someone else. Also, he is being harassed by strange voices from the sewer drains who are threatening to harm his daughter, Sophie, and the other people in his life. Only when Charlie realizes the sewer voices are connected to beings with very tangible plans to take over the “Above” does he realize just how important it is that he do his job – and possibly take on responsibilities that are vastly different from his fellow Death Merchants.

Why is this book a bestseller?
The author is considered one of the best black humorists in contemporary publishing.

Do I recommend you read this book?
If you enjoy dark humor then you will probably enjoy Moore’s works.

How did this book make my list?
I like the majority of the books this guy has written.

Has it won any awards?
It won a 2006 Quill Award in General Fiction.

Favorite quotes:
“Charlie spanked some mayonnaise onto a whole wheat slice to show he was serious.” – p 173

“They were more cautious now, their rapacious nature having been dampened somewhat by having been severely blown up the night before.” – p 313

Anything else?
Many characters from Moore’s other books make appearances throughout this book.

Personal thoughts:
This book is quite a bit darker than most of Moore’s other books. As my husband pointed out, you can see this from the very beginning with the death of Charlie’s wife. There is a theme of sadness and death throughout the book which comes along with Charlie’s newfound job. This doesn’t stop Moore from peppering every page with comedy. Charlie, being a beta male, has a humorous reaction to most of the situations that come about through this novel. And Lily, Sophie, and Jane only add to the hilarity. While this isn’t my favorite Moore book, I still highly recommend it.

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