Mrs Death Misses Death by Salena Godden

Mrs Death Misses Death is a transformative, thought-provoking novel that looks at death, storytelling, and what really matters in the world. Mrs Death has spent eternity doing her job, but things have gotten a bit much, and she finds herself sharing her story with Wolf, a young writer in London who has an acquaintance with death but not Mrs Death. Through Wolf, we learn about past deaths and about what Mrs Death thinks makes life worth living.

This is a difficult book to describe, written in different styles and blending prose, poetry, and script at times. The move between short prose chapters and short poems is particularly good, bringing a sense of seeing into Mrs Death’s thoughts through poetry as well as seeing Wolf’s narration in prose. Despite being a novel, there’s also a lot you can take as have non-fiction elements, with reflections on the common depiction of Death as male and on various issues as they come up, and this makes the novel more powerful, as it becomes not only the story of a strange unreal friendship, but a look at good and bad, life and death.

If you enjoy books that blend prose and poetry and that muse on larger issues whilst focuses on two main characters, this one is for you. It is fast-paced, easy to read quickly, and unlike most other novels you’ll read.