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The Most Amazing Man Who Ever Lived

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Norman's definitely dead. His dad fell out of the sky and flattened him. And as Norman didn't want any regular full-time employment before he died, he certainly doesn't want any now. Especially not here at The Universal Reincarnation Company. There's far too many filing cabinets and far too much paperwork. Not that it's the company's fault. The blame really lies with God. Norman's definitely dead. His dad fell out of the sky and flattened him. And as Norman didn't want any regular full-time employment before he died, he certainly doesn't want any now. Especially not here at The Universal Reincarnation Company. There's far too many filing cabinets and far too much paperwork. Not that it's the company's fault. The blame really lies with God. If He hadn't decided to close down Hell, then Heaven wouldn't have got too overcrowded and there would have been no need to build the extension. And until the extension is finished, the U.R.C. will just have to keep on recycling all those souls in the big queue. If your taste is for a tender romance, taut with passion and desire, love and betrayal, then this raging stonker of a novel, bursting out of its leather pants with sex, scandal, murder, mystery, suspense, drama, action, adventure and Mad Car Disease, probably won't be for you. Sorry.


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Norman's definitely dead. His dad fell out of the sky and flattened him. And as Norman didn't want any regular full-time employment before he died, he certainly doesn't want any now. Especially not here at The Universal Reincarnation Company. There's far too many filing cabinets and far too much paperwork. Not that it's the company's fault. The blame really lies with God. Norman's definitely dead. His dad fell out of the sky and flattened him. And as Norman didn't want any regular full-time employment before he died, he certainly doesn't want any now. Especially not here at The Universal Reincarnation Company. There's far too many filing cabinets and far too much paperwork. Not that it's the company's fault. The blame really lies with God. If He hadn't decided to close down Hell, then Heaven wouldn't have got too overcrowded and there would have been no need to build the extension. And until the extension is finished, the U.R.C. will just have to keep on recycling all those souls in the big queue. If your taste is for a tender romance, taut with passion and desire, love and betrayal, then this raging stonker of a novel, bursting out of its leather pants with sex, scandal, murder, mystery, suspense, drama, action, adventure and Mad Car Disease, probably won't be for you. Sorry.

30 review for The Most Amazing Man Who Ever Lived

  1. 5 out of 5

    P.G. Challis

    Weird and wacky, which is just my kind of writing style.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Chris Amies

    In Cold Comfort Farm, there is a preacher who warns his audience that there is ‘no butter in hell’. Just to warm them up, so to speak. Robert Rankin’s dead protagonist in this novel doesn’t even have the fortune to go to Hell, because that place has been closed down aeons before by a kindly God who failed to foresee that souls would just pile up and there would be a backlog in the reincarnation department. So Norman, who aspired to the gift of wings and in doing so enacted unhallowed rites in th In Cold Comfort Farm, there is a preacher who warns his audience that there is ‘no butter in hell’. Just to warm them up, so to speak. Robert Rankin’s dead protagonist in this novel doesn’t even have the fortune to go to Hell, because that place has been closed down aeons before by a kindly God who failed to foresee that souls would just pile up and there would be a backlog in the reincarnation department. So Norman, who aspired to the gift of wings and in doing so enacted unhallowed rites in the names of beings too foul to mention, is killed by his descending dad doing an Icarus bit and ends up as a ghost. Ghosts, be it understood, remain where they died - in space - so they appear on the anniversary of their deaths when the Earth in its orbit catches up with them. What Norman finds out is bizarre indeed. Not only the backlog in the reincarnation department, but someone is being reborn again and again on their original birthdate, replicating their own soul in several bodies. This person goes by the name of Hugo Rune; poet, bon vivant and professional liar, and father to a tall youth by the name of Cornelius, who in previous volumes has battled the powers of darkness while swanning around in a big Cadillac. Rune is bigger and nastier than before; he now has reversed-colour eyes (black around white), and is planning to electroplate the Skelington Bay piers and as a side-effect kill off everybody, including the souls waiting to reincarnate. Well, enough said. This is the usual manic Rankin roller-coaster ride, this time attacking such targets as car-porn ("my XR3i’s bigger than your XR2i") and those lost souls who tear out perfectly good Art Deco furniture to put in moquette carpet-tiles and draylon covers, and call rooms by things like the KEV-LYN Suite. There is an engagingly silly alien who looks like a sheep, and what is probably a send-up of the *Survivors*-type rural post-holocaust story. It’s fun.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Martin Haynes

    Enjoyed this one, at times it throws you as one character ends a sentence with a word and that word becomes the beginning of a sentence from a completely different character. Still, several heroes for the price of one, some truly cringe making running gags and one liners and a preposterous storyline, what's not to like? Enjoyed this one, at times it throws you as one character ends a sentence with a word and that word becomes the beginning of a sentence from a completely different character. Still, several heroes for the price of one, some truly cringe making running gags and one liners and a preposterous storyline, what's not to like?

  4. 4 out of 5

    Jan

    Much better than the first two in the trilogy, but not quite enough for three stars. Some bits were good, others just OK. Need two and a half stars to be an accurate rating.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Tim Schneider

    Cornelius Murphy is back. Along with his friend Tuppe, Boris the alien-sheep, Norman the dead boy and Thelma and Louise they face off against a horde of evil Hugo Runes. All in a day's work for an epic adventurer. I actually felt this was the weakest of the Murphy novels, though it's still a very good read. It's funny, moves along at a good clip and has the classic Rankin continuing jokes and self-awareness. I suspect that this one might be a bit obtuse if you're not already familiar with Murphy Cornelius Murphy is back. Along with his friend Tuppe, Boris the alien-sheep, Norman the dead boy and Thelma and Louise they face off against a horde of evil Hugo Runes. All in a day's work for an epic adventurer. I actually felt this was the weakest of the Murphy novels, though it's still a very good read. It's funny, moves along at a good clip and has the classic Rankin continuing jokes and self-awareness. I suspect that this one might be a bit obtuse if you're not already familiar with Murphy, Rune, et. al. But if you are, it's a fine ride.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jon

    I think I've read this. I'm not sure. All Rankin's non-Brentford-trilogy books kind of blur together in my head, for the very good reason that they are in fact all the same book, with some of the words re-arranged. Probably best read bombed out of your gourd, because that's how they were written. I think I've read this. I'm not sure. All Rankin's non-Brentford-trilogy books kind of blur together in my head, for the very good reason that they are in fact all the same book, with some of the words re-arranged. Probably best read bombed out of your gourd, because that's how they were written.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Colin

    This was my first Rankin book I have read, and I have to say I did enjoy the read, it was a nice piece of lighthearted reading, I do believe there are other of his in our bookcase so perhaps after I have read the next few books I have got to read I'll look them out..... This was my first Rankin book I have read, and I have to say I did enjoy the read, it was a nice piece of lighthearted reading, I do believe there are other of his in our bookcase so perhaps after I have read the next few books I have got to read I'll look them out.....

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

    Full of wonderful ideas which didn't quite come to fruition. It had the potential to be as good as a Terry Pratchett or Neil Gaiman but lacked the brilliance of language that sets their writing apart. Probably deserved four stars, but the teenage-boy humour was a little much at times. Full of wonderful ideas which didn't quite come to fruition. It had the potential to be as good as a Terry Pratchett or Neil Gaiman but lacked the brilliance of language that sets their writing apart. Probably deserved four stars, but the teenage-boy humour was a little much at times.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Colin Forbes

    Possibly not the finest of Robert Rankin's novels, but still a light-hearted comic romp in much the fashion you would expect if you have dabbled in his writings before. Comes across not so much as having been plotted, but more as a stream-of-consciousness exercise in 'lets see where this goes'. Possibly not the finest of Robert Rankin's novels, but still a light-hearted comic romp in much the fashion you would expect if you have dabbled in his writings before. Comes across not so much as having been plotted, but more as a stream-of-consciousness exercise in 'lets see where this goes'.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Mark

    A fun read, and worth it just to close out the trilogy, but not his best work.

  11. 5 out of 5

    William

    As surreal as always from Robert Rankin. Good fun and a list of characters that I could just about keep track of. An entertaining read but nothing special to be honest.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Nathan Corrin

  13. 5 out of 5

    Euan

  14. 5 out of 5

    Steve

  15. 5 out of 5

    Ali

  16. 4 out of 5

    Jeremy

  17. 4 out of 5

    Kel Ng

  18. 5 out of 5

    Phil Harrison

  19. 4 out of 5

    Gael Spruyt

  20. 5 out of 5

    Thomas Bishop

  21. 4 out of 5

    Bryan Filtness

  22. 5 out of 5

    Ian Harrison

  23. 4 out of 5

    Rob Gregson

  24. 4 out of 5

    Laura Hill

  25. 4 out of 5

    Kara

  26. 5 out of 5

    Mr Steven James Waters

  27. 4 out of 5

    Peter Jetson

  28. 4 out of 5

    Sveltesylph

  29. 4 out of 5

    Hugh

  30. 4 out of 5

    Chris

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