A Dirty Job: A Novel

Paperback | March 27, 2007

byChristopher Moore

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Charlie Asher is a pretty normal guy with a normal life, married to a bright and pretty woman who actually loves him for his normalcy. They're even about to have their first child. Yes, Charlie's doing okay—until people start dropping dead around him, and everywhere he goes a dark presence whispers to him from under the streets. Charlie Asher, it seems, has been recruited for a new position: as Death.

It's a dirty job. But, hey! Somebody's gotta do it.

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From the Publisher

Charlie Asher is a pretty normal guy with a normal life, married to a bright and pretty woman who actually loves him for his normalcy. They're even about to have their first child. Yes, Charlie's doing okay—until people start dropping dead around him, and everywhere he goes a dark presence whispers to him from under the streets. Charli...

Christopher Moore is the author of fourteen previous novels, includingLamb,The Stupidest Angel,Fool,Sacré Bleu,A Dirty Job, andThe Serpent of Venice. He lives in San Francisco, California.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:416 pages, 8 × 5.31 × 0.94 inPublished:March 27, 2007Publisher:HarperCollinsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0060590289

ISBN - 13:9780060590284

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Customer Reviews of A Dirty Job: A Novel

Reviews

Rated 4 out of 5 by from Interesting!! One thing that stood out to me throughout this whole novel was the massive creativity. This author has such a creative mind and I look forward to reading his other books. He has a true storyteller's mind! This story had interesting and highly amusing characters, my favourite I think being Jane. But all of the characters were very intriguing to read about. The dialogue was also interestingly clever and witty! Amidst the hilarious and sometimes crude humour, there is a storyline in the book and genuine emotion portrayed through Charlie Asher and the grief he suffers through from <spoiler>losing his wife and having to raise his daughter without her.</spoiler> Lastly, that ending totally floored me! Wow!
Date published: 2016-11-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great No the best book I've ever read, but highly entertaining with an engaging plot. Enjoyed it immensely, and highly recommend to anyone wanting a good laugh.
Date published: 2016-04-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So much fun This story was so much fun and delightfully touching. I laughed and giggled my way through Charlie's adventures as death and hilarious efforts at child-wangling.
Date published: 2015-09-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from San Francisco as never before imagined. A great run through the streets and neighborhoods of San Francisco with wackos, ner-do-wells, hell-hounds, the Luminate and Charlie (a beta male Death Merchant). Glory, what fun.
Date published: 2015-06-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from San Francisco as never before imagined. My favourite humour author. I honestly laugh out loud at the characters and the funny situations they are put in.
Date published: 2013-10-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from New Moore Fan This is the first book I've read by Christopher Moore and I've got to say it was pretty damn good. His humour is just perfect, punch lines in all the right places. I'm not sold on the ending, and I LOVE endings. They make or break a good book for me. It kind of happened really fast, but Moore makes up for it at the very very end. Will definitely be picking up some more of Moore's books.
Date published: 2013-05-17
Rated 2 out of 5 by from not his best I found this book confusing in its premise, amusing but not laugh-out-loud funny as some of his others. Characters are good but Charlie Asher, the main one, thinks he's Death (which he is, kind of) and things go off track in the middle.Wildly unique, but not Moore's best.
Date published: 2013-02-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So fab! I really like Chris Moore. I am not sure where he comes up with these crazy ideas, but his books are so interesting and innovative. This one in particular was funny and fascinating. The idea of souls being captured in everyday objects really makes you laugh and also, think. I wonder now what my soul vessel would be. Please read it! It's fantastic. I will be reading all of his books!!
Date published: 2011-03-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I really liked it. Charlie Asher’s wife, Rachel, dies shortly after giving birth to their daughter, Sophie. At this time in the hospital, Charlie sees a very large black man wearing a mint green suit; the black man is astonished that Charlie can see him! After this, weird things start happening to Charlie: random objects are glowing red, people are dropping dead around him! What is going on? It took a little bit for the book to get going, I thought, but not too far into it, when we find out what is going on, I thought it really picked up, and I really liked it. There were some great supporting characters in the book: Ray and Lily, who work at Charlie’s second-hand store; Sophie, Charlie’s little girl; Mrs. Ling and Mrs. Korjev, Charlie’s neighbours and frequent babysitters of Sophie… I listened to the audio, and I’m sure people thought I was a little odd, laughing to myself as I listened. I would give the story itself 3.75 stars, but I’m adding an extra quarter star for the really good narrator of the audio.
Date published: 2010-07-02
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Beta-rific Not maybe his best book, but pleasurable reading. Moore always seems to find a balance between madcap absurdity and warmth. The humour is constant and should remove any real sense of character, and yet the characters are endearing, The silly plots are creative and convoluted, as well as unpredictable. This one has a recently widowed man and new father thrust into the supernatural when he finds he has been drafted to be a servant of death. There is a quality to his story-telling that is hard to define. You feel happy and good while reading them. Are they a escape? Maybe. But they aren’t cheap. In lesser hands, these kinds of stories could be very cheap and empty. The first book I ever read by Moore was Fluke, which, offered a science fiction type story. It was rollicking and funny as hell and even ribald, and yet it wasn’t til toward the end that I started to realise that the primary genre was not adventure or sci-fi, but humour. He is most similar to James Morrow in that respect--you’re reading a really good, engaging book, that happens to wink and poke fun at everything constantly while you are along for the ride. The silliness should constantly remind you that you are reading a story, that the story itself is simply a frame for amusement, and yet it blooms to three dimensions anyways. The running joke/commentary about beta males never stopped delivering
Date published: 2010-04-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Fantastic Job!!! “So now you’re death…” and you have the daunting task of visiting every dying person in San Francisco and collecting their soul vessels all the while being attacked and followed by death demons in the form of giant birdlike creatures - Sewer Harpies (complete with skulls and chicken legs) - and as if that wasn’t bad enough your only daughter is death’s spawn! For all you desk hoggers out there who think your job is bad, just think of poor Charlie Asher – the quiet, spineless beta male - who, following the death of his wife, found himself to be a death merchant. Charlie Asher was as normal as a man can be, living in San Francisco and married to the beautiful Rachel Asher who was pregnant with her first child. He owned a small used clothing shop which employed a young Gothic girl named Lily and a pornographic obsessed ex-cop named Ray. Aside from his wife there were no shining beacons in his life, until the death of his wife brought him face to face with Death – well actually his minion who in turn somehow initiated him into the death business and opened his eyes to the millions of shining beacons across the city. And all of these beacons shined red. As a newly appointed minion of death along with his death manual, he soon finds out that he must scour the city collecting the left over souls of dead people and ensure that they are given to their new rightful owner. Christopher Moore has written a hilarious and unapologetic tale of good vs evil. You cannot help but fall in love with the world he has created in this novel. Charlie is hilarious and his sidekicks Minty Fresh, Ray and Lily carry the story beyond just a hunt for souls but a quest for survival. Sophie is tres adorable, her killer word was a wacky twist added to the plot and you can’t help but love her even though she is death in the flesh! Her babysitters are stereotyped galore and I didn’t care because it was so damn hilarious. His quirky sister, Jane (the true alpha male in the family) looks better in his pant suits than he does and is portrayed as the butch lesbian she is, which makes the reader, even a conservative one, fall for her. Moore is who he is and plays women as sex objects and plays on stereotypes and yet doesn’t take it to an unhealthy and insulting extreme. Moore uses the subject of death as a focus on the light instead of the darkness of it. He throws in humor, puns and ironic situations that will have you laughing at death and leave you looking forward towards living your life. The throwaway humour and wordplays on life are wonderful and reading this book does in fact challenge you to look at life and death differently, not in a sense of doom but to laugh at death and live your life the way you want too. He takes a simple concept and turns it into an adventure, for that is truly what death is… an adventure.
Date published: 2009-10-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from more moore please i saw someone reading this book and the cover intrigued me, they say you can't judge a book by the cover. i say that with this book you can. Christopher Moore has become my new favorite author. i have already started reading other books written by. i need more Moore
Date published: 2009-10-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Hilarious!!!!!!!!! this book was the utmost hilarious piece of work i have ever read! each page made me laugh till my cheeks hurt! i really loved it!! and i couldn't stop talking baout it to others! this is a must read!!!!!!!!!!!!
Date published: 2009-05-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from When Death Comes Knocking Death has taken on may shapes and sizes. But by far this has to be one of the funnier ones. a slightly slower Moore book but well worth the read....I still think there should be a part two.
Date published: 2009-04-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Interesting The author is witty and funny. I really enjoyed reading this book. Made me laugh quite a few times...out loud.
Date published: 2009-03-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So funny! A Dirty Job is the story of Charlie Asher, a "beta-male" who leads a satisfyingly normal life as the owner and proprietor of a second-hand store in San Francisco. Life couldn't be better for him, his wife, Rachel, has just given birth to their first child, Sophie, and everything is looking pretty good. However, when Rachel suddenly dies, just moments after Sophie's birth, Charlie becomes involved in a new sideline of retrieving the souls of the dying, so as to protect them from the forces of the underworld. He only gradually realizes the ramifications of this business as various clues and complications unfold. Let me start by saying that I am a big fan of humorous books. I love Carl Hiassen, Terry Pratchett, and Robert Asprin. There is nothing like a good laugh amongst the pages. Given this I've been constantly told, over the last few years, that I "must" read Christopher Moore, that he is satisfyingly hilarious and I will laugh my heart out. My only disappointment is that I didn't get to this author sooner. To say that Christopher Moore's writing is "hilarious" would be a gross understatement, it is more laugh-until-you-cry-hilarious! Only Christopher Moore could deliver this line with such panache. "The Emperor decided to make a proclamation to the troops about the importance of compassion in the face of the rising tie of heinous f**kery and political weaselocity in the nearby kingdom of the United States." I'm not sure if "weaselocity" is a word, but its definitely been added to my vocabulary. The story, which is based on a beta-male (as opposed to an alpha male) is pure genius. Charlie Asher has always been convinced that something is going to go wrong in his life, so when it does go wrong, naturally it involves the Forces of Darkness and the Underworld. There are twists and turns at every corner, and an ending that will leave readers on the edge of the seat. A Dirty Job is filled with profanity, violence and sexuality at every turn. But yet, it is also poignant and heart-felt. Moore has created a character that is lonely and trying to find his place in the world, after the death of his wife. A character that every reader will adore. Along with Charlie Asher, I rather did enjoy the other characters as well. They are as integral as the plot, Lily, Charlie's assistant at his store, in all her gothic glory, Sophie, his daughter who has two hellhounds as body guards, and Minty Fresh (yes that is his name!), who helps Charlie come to terms with being a "Death Merchant". I give this one an A+ and definitely recommend it to anyone that would like a good laugh, but doesn't offend easily! As they say its a dirty job, but somebody has to do it!
Date published: 2009-02-19
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Predictable This is my first time reading Christopher Moore's book. It's one of those books that I don't really know what to think--I don't hate or like it. The characters were plain over-the-top weird, to the point where I couldn't take the character or the book seriously. The good thing is that it created some laughs, which could only be achieved by such preposterous characters. For such an interesting storyline, I found the plot extremely predictable and unnecessarily long. A good book to pick up for a few laughs, but nothing more.
Date published: 2008-12-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Original and Funny This was my first Christopher Moore novel and I have to say I quite enjoyed the read. It was definitely different than anything else I've read which was refreshing and it contained many chuckles and even a handful of laughs out loud. The characters are priceless and play very well off one another. It's a fairly light book, nothing too deep although it does touch on spirituality and religion. If you're looking for something original, funny and not too serious you'll like this book. I'll definitely be reading more of Christopher Moore's books.
Date published: 2008-12-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutely Funny! This book is amazing. I picked it up by chance at my local library, just from reading the back of the book. It is so funny! The main character is a lovable dad, who just lost his wife, but gains a daughter. The author does an awesome job at making him sound so funny, and real at the same time. This book made me laugh out loud for real! The actual plot is solid too. The main character's story is told not too fast, and not too slow, and even though ending was a shock, and a tad sad, you can't help but smile! A must read for anyone that like's to have a good laugh!
Date published: 2008-12-07
Rated 3 out of 5 by from started great The first part of this book was fantastic. Moore captured by emotions and my attention immediately. But as the story progressed, it became too outlandish and ridiculous. This may seem sill to say, seeing as how the book is about a man go suddenly starts collecting to souls of the dead and dying, but there are some things that just don't mesh well with the rest of the story. By the end i was disappointed, having seen what potential the book had in the first half.
Date published: 2008-11-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Morbid Fun That Will Make You Laugh Out Loud Someone at Chapters had told me about this book, and I figured I'd give it a shot. Christopher Moore is absolutely hilarious and this book made me laugh so hard. The humour and action and everything inbetween just rocked my world. I strongly suggest you read this book because it is by far one of my favourites. Moore does not fail when it comes to entertaining through literature.
Date published: 2008-09-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Very Funny (Dry) but not "Funny" (Sitcom) Christopher Moore's sense of humour is very British, meaning its is completely irreverent, wickedly dry and, so long as you don't take too much deadly seriously, it WILL make you laugh out loud. The concept, as with most Moore books is ridiculously simple, and yet very very complicated. Ordinary guy "inherits" (unwillingly) the job of grim reaper, while he's trying to be ordinary, dad/bread-winner type guy and trying to deal with his own existing problems. Mayhem ensues...inconvenience follows...man finds himself in one bizzaro situation after another...much screaming and whining and knashing of teeth follows that. It's funny. Trust me - Read this book...unless you dislike irreverent, no-holds-barred humour. In that the case, stay away from all Christopher Moore books.
Date published: 2008-09-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from FANTASTIC!!!!!!! Christopher Moore has written some great novels, but I have to say that Dirty Job is my favorite to date. He blends genres like a great chef to create a satisfying,quirky book that is sure to please horror, fantasy and fiction lovers alike.
Date published: 2008-09-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic! This book gets more fantastic with every read!
Date published: 2008-04-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Fun and Morbid In classic Moore fashion, this is a tale of a Beta male who falls into a position that is unwanted and yet gives him the ability to become more than he thought he could be. Filled with humor and glimpses of characters that appear in his other books, Moore also manages to create a poingant tale of a single father raising a baby on his own and trying to put back together that peices of his life. Oh and manage his death dealing daughter and her pet hellhounds while trying to come to grips with his new job and try to keep a small sense or normality. This is a fun read and a fun romp into the underworld from the point of veiw of the least likely candidate for Death imiginable.
Date published: 2008-02-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of the years best reads, hands down! This book was my introduction to Christopher Moore and his style of writing, and what an introduction it was. I absolutely loved this book. It was one of those books that you can't put down once you've started it. It follows the tales of Charlie Asher and chronicles his life in San Francisco raising a child while coping with lifes losses and a new vocation that was thrust upon him. He handles himself admirably and you find yourself cheering him on in his pursuits! Absolutely one of the best books you could read, followed by the rest of Christopher Moore's ever growing list of titles. Be sure to pick up a copy!
Date published: 2008-01-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from sooo funny Don't like all his books, but this one was very good. Laugh-out-loud funny and witty. Loved the little girl and the hell-dogs relationship!
Date published: 2008-01-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Please read it, life will be better for it. The reasons I loved this book and will read it again are many-fold. It very much reminds me of one of my favorite shows "Dead Like Me", with the witty, light graveside humour, and gentle puns. It also contained several poignant death bed moments that, rather than detract from the movement of the whole, added to the overall flavour.
Date published: 2007-04-02

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Editorial Reviews

“Death, of course, is not usually a funny subject, but in the hands of Christopher Moore it sure is.”