Sir Terry Pratchett was for a long while (pre-J.K. Rowling) England’s best-selling author, and for good reason. Although not well known at the time in the U.S., his work – mainly the very long series of Discworld novels – had a loyal and widespread readership. I met him briefly at a conference and was charmed by his wit, his humanity, and intelligence. He was something of a rascal, but a brilliant one. One of my favorites of his books, Good Omens, which he wrote in league with that other maverick genius, Neil Gaiman, was far better than the work it spoofed. And Thief of Time, a Discworld novel, is a marvelous romp but at the same time (so to speak) a probing philosophical, yea theological exploration.
Diagnosed a few years ago with early Alzheimer’s Disease, Pratchett investigated and agitated for the right to die, but in the end died at home in the good company of his family. He will be greatly missed but long remembered for his wonderful contributions to the art of loving satire and deeply humane observations on the human estate. Mort, be not proud, but relish your new companion. After all, he turned even you into a pretty lovable character.