Tom Holt is among my favorite contemporary writers. It's his prose style that does it for me. When I write fiction, it's his voice that I try to emulate, more than any other writer. He sets up his words in such a way that an ordinary sentence turns into a vehicle for comedy.
Under pseudonym K. J. Parker, he writes fantasy novels that are laugh-out-loud funny, but it's hard to persuade anyone of that, what with the high body count and catastrophically tragic story lines. As Tom Holt, he writes science fiction novels that feature somewhat less slaughtering.
For example, although the protagonist of When It's a Jar does at one point take a mortal wound, it's not a permanent condition. He's able to free himself from Valhalla after a few weeks, so no harm done.
This is the second book in Holt's YouSpace series, which can be roughly summarized as: madcap escapades through the multiverse. Or putting it another way, this is like A Hitch-hiker's Guide to the Galaxy, but funnier. And Ray Sawyer's audiobook narration is pitch perfect.
When Covid first hit, I started doing book talks on social media as a way to keep in touch with people. I never got out of the habit. I don't discuss books by my clients, and if I don't like a book, I won't discuss it at all. While I will sometimes focus on craft or offer gentle critical perspectives, as a matter of professional courtesy, I don't trash writers. Unless they're dead. Then the gloves come off.