Sunday, July 10, 2011

Good Omens

Title: Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch
Authors: Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman
List: #68 on BBC Top 100
Worth reading? Most definitely!

Because I decided to start this blog partway through my quest, I think I will go back in time a little bit and “review” some of the books I have read relatively recently. My other reason for doing this is that I’m currently only about a quarter of the way through The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett, and as that is quite a hefty tome and my weekends are currently devoted to packing for an imminent move, it may take a while before I’m ready to blog about that one. There are so many good books that I’ve read over the last two years, well, that I’ve read since I started reading, that I would love to write about, but I fear they aren’t quite fresh enough in my mind for a coherent post that says more than “this book is amazing” and “you should definitely read it!” And so, I will probably limit myself to books I’ve read within the last couple of months. First up, Good Omens.

About a month ago, I was wandering through the stacks at our local public library and this book caught my eye. I recognized the title from The List, and after reading the book description and some of the review blurbs, I decided this would be my next adventure. I had never heard of this book before and, apparently, that either means that (1) I’ve been living under a rock, (2) I am just not cool enough to be “in the know,” or (3) (and this is the most probable) both. Comments from the authors that were included in the book stated that they love signing copies of this book because every copy looks like it has gone through hell—bindings falling off, bindings missing, water logged, torn, held together with rubber bands, you name it. And every fan explains how much the book means to him or her and to what lengths he or she has gone to take it places, loan it out, get it back, and re-read it over and over again. My copy was much less storied—it was still quite pristine in its hardcover binding. Perhaps people are careful with library books after all? Or maybe the library had just been forced to replace it recently!

Wikipedia can give you a very nice plot summary. I will just go so far as to say the book is about the apocalypse and the coming of the Anti-Christ. But not the apocalypse as you could ever have imagined it. It is hilarious and full of fantastic characters, like the demon and angel who each have, respectively, become less demonic and less angelic since Eve ate the apple, the Satanic nuns who accidentally give the Anti-Christ to the wrong people so that everyone thinks the wrong boy is the Anti-Christ, the witch who is following the very accurate prophecies of her ancestor, and a novice witch hunter.

The book is very well-written and the authors draw you into the story so that it is difficult to put down. And, as I’ve already mentioned, it really is hilarious. So if you’re looking for a pretty easy and amusing read or want to read something incredibly original, this is the book to pick to pick up. I can definitely see why it made the list and why, even though I personally don’t feel the need to read it over and over again, it has become a cult classic.

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