As to be expected with a book featuring necromancers in the lead roles, The Healthy Dead is filled with a mixture of dark humour and bodies in various states of decomposition. Even the former King gets involved when the boys free him from the spike that's been used to affix him as an adornment to the walls of the city. Naturally, he's a bit upset when he figures out that his brother poisoned him and he eventually falls to pieces - litterally. But that's okay because Bauchelain has a perfect glass container to hold his head in and just knows it will be good in the study.
In his other books, you can hear that Erikson has a good ear for comedy and in this novel he puts it to good use. The undead say and do the darndest things sometimes and Erikson brings them to life – so to speak – with an amazing eye and ear for detail, from their physical descriptions to their arguments with their living relatives. There's nothing quite like hearing a family member come back from the dead to tell a son, or niece just what they really thought of them.
The Healthy Dead is a darkly humorous satire that is a delight and joy to read. The logic of hiring incredibly evil men to save your city from an excess of "goodness" is inescapable. What does it matter at times like these that one of them collects live human organs and binds them together with magic and tries to animate them as his children when you are living under the regime of terror like the people of Quaint are experiencing? Not much I'd say – you take your friends where you can find them in those circumstances and hope they don't stay around for too long after the job is done.