Book #70

Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett

According to the Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter - the world's only totally reliable guide to the future - the world will end on a Saturday. Next Saturday, in fact. Just after tea...

People have been predicting the end of the world almost from its very beginning, so it’s only natural to be sceptical when a new date is set for Judgement Day. This time though, the armies of Good and Evil really do appear to be massing. The four Bikers of the Apocalypse are hitting the road. But both the angels and demons – well, one fast-living demon and a somewhat fussy angel – would quite like the Rapture not to happen.
And someone seems to have misplaced the Antichrist.

I don’t think this is what I wanted, but somehow I think it was what I was expecting. 

The idea of an angel and demon working together to prevent the Antichrist invoking Armageddon is a brilliant one, particularly when said angel and demon are such excellent characters. Being allowed the experience of picturing them as Michael Sheen and David Tennant just makes things all the more exciting.

I launched through the first half of the novel in happy inhalation. I was enjoying myself massively, until we hit a wall. The plot became overly jumpy, flicking between perspectives and causing confusion, introducing characters I felt I didn’t have enough time to connect with, and ultimately creating a general sense of chaos and slapstick. Admittedly, chaos and slapstick are probably elements the authors were looking to create, but I ended up senselessly lost.

Despite the disorientating tangles, there’s some great humour here alongside a unique humanisation of celestial and demonic beings working together secretly. I also enjoyed the subtle commentary around religion, the concept of nature vs nurture, and whether our destinies are rigidly set out or happily flexible.

I’m still unsure how to feel. I enjoyed it, but perhaps I’m all too aware of Pratchett and Gaiman’s separate skillsets and abilities, and I’m recognising these weren’t brought into the light with Good Omens as they could have been.