Good Omens – Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett

Good Omens

 

WordPress sends me notifications every time someone follows this blog. To date, I have received 56 of them. 56 people follow this blog, which is 56 more than I expected when I started it. Compared to a lot of the blogs I follow (mostly book related, some are just funny) 56 is piddly. But to me 56 is a lot. I didn’t start writing about books because I wanted people to read my thoughts, I just needed somewhere I could rant about everything I read without people looking at me like I’m crazy when I come to them crying because the main character in a series I love just died (*cough cough* TRIS *cough cough*). However, I’m floored that 56 people actually wanted to read my rantings enough that they followed me. Alright so probably 15 of you just followed hoping I would follow back (this isn’t Twitter, people), so let’s say 41. Regardless, thanks for reading. Now on to the books!

I should have loved Good Omens. But I didn’t. I should have read the first word, the first line, the first sentence, and not put it down until I finished the last. But I didn’t. I did not enjoy this as much as I thought I would. That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy it, because I did. I found it entertaining and funny and original. But it wasn’t one of those books I pick up and never want to put down. Maybe I just had high expectations going in because I love Neil Gaiman, or maybe because I have heard so many great things about Terry Pratchett. Maybe I just wanted to love this book. Whatever the case, if you are going to be offended by my lack of love for what is pretty widely regarded as a cult classic I would stop reading now.

Good Omens two main characters (I say main, but there are so many characters that have their own point of views it’s hard to pick just two) were my favourite. Aziraphle, an angel with a dark side, and Crowley, a demon with a good heart, join teams to save the world. The banter between them is hilarious and adorable, it was my favourite part of the story.

The best part about reading any Gaiman writing is the way he uses language, as well as his humour. One of my favourite lined from the book, which is quoted just under this paragraph, is a wonderful example of his language use. It’s so descriptive, and yet not drawn out or boring. To be fair, I don’t know if it was Gaiman or Pratchett who wrote this, but it’s actually pretty hard to tell the two writer’s voices apart.

“She was beautiful, but she was beautiful in the way a forest fire was beautiful: something to be admired from a distance, not up close.” 

I love that.

Gaiman and Pratchett also have a great sense of humour. There are several quirky parts of the story line that really intrigued, entertained, or amused me. Crowley, the demon with a heart of gold, has an issue with his demon car. “All tapes left in a car for more than about a fortnight metamorphose into Best of Queen albums.” Apparently Queen is the Devil’s music. Gives We Are the Champions a whole new meaning, doesn’t it?

Crowley also has a unique green thumb…

“He had heard about talking to plants in the early seventies, on Radio Four, and thought it was an excellent idea. Although talking is perhaps the wrong word for what Crowley did.
What he did was put the fear of God into them.
More precisely, the fear of Crowley.
In addition to which, every couple of months Crowley would pick out a plant that was growing too slowly, or succumbing to leaf-wilt or browning, or just didn’t look quite as good as the others, and he would carry it around to all the other plants. “Say goodbye to your friend,” he’d say to them. “He just couldn’t cut it. . . “
Then he would leave the flat with the offending plant, and return an hour or so later with a large, empty flower pot, which he would leave somewhere conspicuously around the flat.
The plants were the most luxurious, verdant, and beautiful in London. Also the most terrified.” 

Seriously, where do these gentlemen come up with ideas like this? At one point, Crowley and another demon also get sucked into a phone line and end up being spit out of an answering machine. (If you don’t know what an answering machine is, you were probably born after the 2000s. If that’s the case, good for you being interested enough in good books to be reading this. Well done, youngster.)

While I was reading Good Omens I got really bored somewhere in the middle, put it down for a while, and came back to it later. I’m giving myself props for coming back to it, because usually if I lose interest I don’t go back. Like with Wuthering Heights, I could not stand that book. I’m all for classics, but goodness gracious I hated Wuthering Heights. This summer I’m challenging myself to go back and finish all the books I gave up on half way through, so here comes Wuthering Heights, Anna Karenina, Shake Hands With the Devil, People of the Book, The Postmistress, Valkyrie, and The Blind Side.

Alright, so I’m a little side tracked. This wasn’t the most cohesive of posts to begin with, so I’m going to wrap it up. Good Omens was good, just not as good as I was expecting. Wuthering Heights was terrible, and I probably just offended at least half of the 56 people who follow this blog. TTFN!

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