Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Sir Terry Pratchett – Book Review

Blurb

‘Armageddon only happens once, you know. They don’t let you go around again until you get it right.’

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. But what if, for once, the predictions are right, and the apocalypse really is due to arrive next Saturday, just after tea?

You could spend the time left drowning your sorrows, giving away all your possessions in preparation for the rapture, or laughing it off as (hopefully) just another hoax. Or you could just try to do something about it.

It’s a predicament that Aziraphale, a somewhat fussy angel, and Crowley, a fast-living demon now finds themselves in. They’ve been living amongst Earth’s mortals since The Beginning and, truth be told, have grown rather fond of the lifestyle and, in all honesty, are not actually looking forward to the coming Apocalypse.

And then there’s the small matter that someone appears to have misplaced the Antichrist…

My Review

CAVEAT

Kids! Bringing about Armageddon can be dangerous. Do not attempt it in your own home.

I like a good caveat. More books should come with one…

In theory I adore this book.
In theory I love the premise, I love how absurd it is. I love the wit, the intelligence. I utterly love the thought processes behind the creation of these characters.

But all this is in theory.

In actuality I was bored out of my tree. I found vast swathes of this book to feel rather confusing and convoluted. I just wanted it over… Somewhat ironic when you think the book is about trying to prevent or at least defer Armageddon.

I have always liked Pratchett. But then again I have always liked him in theory more than in practice. I admire the Discworld books but yet have only read a handful. And actually DNFd The Colour of Magic the very first time I read it back in the 90s. But any time I saw Sir Terry interviewed or giving a lecture on TV I tuned in and was always thoroughly engaged and entertained. So I always think I like him a lot (when maybe it’s just a case of his writing not being to my particular taste even though I love who he was as a person)

Gaiman…
Eh…
I’ve only read ‘The Sleeper and the Spindle’ and ‘Snow, Glass, Apples’ and both underwhelmed me. However I do adore the film adaptation of his book Stardust…. And apparently I read some Sherlock Holmes inspired short too; thank you GR shelf search, without you I would have had no clue I read that so not exactly a memorable piece then…

But yet I’m feeling rather downhearted that I didn’t love this book. I had started to read it back in 2016 and was loving it… Until an unexpected family bereavement just sent me spiralling and unable to finish this book. But with the TV adaptation this year I really wanted to read this because hello David Tennant and Michael Sheen!!! Sounds like a dream cast… But it’s me and I always have to read the book first…

And now I’ve read it. And honestly can’t even review it properly because by the end it felt like I was just passively reading the book just to get through it rather than truly take it all in.

I wanna say one star… Seems harsh… But God I was utterly bored out of my mind. I don’t know. Maybe it’s a case of it’s not you it’s me. Because I did like the splashes of humour and I especially enjoyed any of the appearances of Crowley and Aziraphale…

I needed more Crowley and Aziraphale really. Especially Crowley.

But ultimately Crowley and Aziraphale couldn’t save this book for me. I found the structure to just be a giant mess. I could never remember who was who, or what was what… I just didn’t get that cohesive plot that I was desperately crying out for. And if I can’t have a cohesive plot then I need memorable characters and interesting character studies. And outside of Crowley and Aziraphale I couldn’t really name any of the other players in the novel because to me it felt like they all just randomly popped up here and there without proper explanation or coherent backstory.

I’ll watch the TV show at any rate. Hopefully that’ll be more to my taste. And will pick up the Guards Discworld novels (I had been working my way through Death’s books) as I’ve been reliably informed by my siblings (who rarely read fiction but obvs know my sense of humour and taste very well) that they’re the best ones.

As for Gaiman… Who knows. Norse Mythology sounds somewhat appealing but I’m still not sold on the idea of persisting with him as an author…

This truly was the most utterly pointless review and instead turned into a self indulgent fest of musings! I do apologise. I promise I’m not normally this inarticulately ridiculous!

“It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people”

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14 thoughts on “Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Sir Terry Pratchett – Book Review

  1. Haha, I think this is a pretty accurate review of this book…I personally am a fan of Gaiman but neutral on Pratchett (haven’t read anything by him), yet I still found this book somehow dull despite the fun premise. HOWEVER – I loved the show so much I watched it twice in two weeks. You definitely get more Crowley. I hope you also enjoy it more than the book!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Looool Thanks Jenna, it was just such a weird book for me. There is so much about the whole premise that sounds amazing but… just did not work for me and I am scratching my head still as to why lmao!!! I started the series the other day but decided not to continue right now. I think I would like a little longer between the read and the watching :)))))

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I think the reason why I’ve been putting off picking up this book (again) is because I’m worried I’ll feel much the same as you! I was ambitious and hoped to read it before the series was launched last year but… I just couldn’t get through it. I love Gaiman but I’ve never read anything by Pratchett before. The writing was just confusing and I felt like trying to be too much all at once? Maybe one day I’ll read this. I heard the TV show was fantastic and I just kinda wanna skip the book and jump straight to the show? But ehhh… 🤷🏻‍♀️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, I feel that Dini! The structure is just very awkward… or let’s be nicer and say rather particular! And if it doesn’t suit your particular reading taste (like it did not mine) then definitely go straight to the TV show. I have watched the first episode and half the second and so far it is extremely faithful to the book but with greater clarity of narrative. Sadly for me I feel the book has soured my over all yearning to watch the show so I am not sure I will continue…. but if I could do things all over I would have skipped the book for sure.

      Like

  3. I haven’t seen the tv series yet, but I listened to the audiobook version of this book and it made a huge difference for me. Gaiman in particular is one of those authors that I prefer to read via audiobook.

    Liked by 2 people

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