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Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch CD-ROM
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By Robert E. Parker on June 21, 2019
This was quirky and a little on the odd side but totally fun. Heaven and Hell have basically been in a cold war for well forever it seems. Ever since Lucifer “An Angel who did not so much Fall as Saunter Vaguely Downwards.” became the bad guy the final show down has been in the works. But now, finally Satan’s son has been born and the prophecies all say that when he is Eleven the end of the world will finally come about.
The humor in this is really incredibly fun and I loved Aziraphale, the Angel who wasn’t necessarily all good, and Crowley the demon who really wasn’t that bad of a guy. Even more I enjoyed the friendship between them and how they worked both together and against each other.
“Hell wasn't a major reservoir of evil, any more then Heaven, in Crowley's opinion, was a fountain of goodness; they were just sides in the great cosmic chess game. Where you found the real McCoy, the real grace and the real heart-stopping evil, was right inside the human mind.”
This had an extensive cast that included the four horsemen (one was a woman) of the apocalypse, a witch or two, some Satanists (they weren’t really bad people), a gang of kids, a witchhunter and a dog.
There are a ton of funny little snippets here and there and I really enjoyed the cut and paste together style that had the reader jumping from group of characters to groups of characters as we go through the countdown to the final days.
This is supposed to be a tv series soon and it will be interesting to see how that goes. I think it will be a good time and lets face it at the end of the world you might as well have a good time.
Perfect for when you just want a good laugh and some ridiculousness in your life.
The only characters I enjoyed were the angel and the demon, who happen to be unlikely buddies, and their interaction is usually entertaining. The 4 bikers of the Apocalypse are also a fresh take on the classic horsemen. Other than that, I really didn't care much about anyone else, with some of the other characters (the witch hunters in particular) being right down obnoxious. I also couldn't bring myself to care about the end of the world, and if you can't make me care even a little bit about the most catastrophic event possible, you know you didn't do it right. In fact, when I start hoping the end does come and wipes out these obnoxious people, you probably missed the mark by a long shot.
I think I'll take a break from Gainman for a bit, since it seems every book I read is worse than the previous.
By Rebecca O on April 16, 2019
Top reviews from other countries
But on the urgings of a friend, I have now, and for the first time, read one of the novels that he wrote in collaboration with another writer. I’d always resisted that inclination in the past, driven by a sense that I wanted my Terry Pratchett unadulterated or not at all. Ask a Scotsman what the best thing is to add to a whisky and he’ll tell you, “another whisky.” Nothing mixes better with Pratchett than another Pratchett.
After <i>Good Omens</i>, I’ve had to revise that view. It isn’t a Pratchett novel. It isn’t set on the Discworld, for instance, but on Earth. Nonetheless, behind the wit that hums through the book, some of it no doubt down to the co-author Neil Gaiman, there are occasional gleams of pure Pratchett: in the ageing dominatrix, for instance, who is essentially motherly and decorates her boudoir of sin with fluffy toys, or the suggestion that nothing Hell could come up with as a torment would rival what mankind can dream up on its own.
The theme is a parody of the film <i>Omen</i>. A son has been born to Satan. His agents, notably the demon Crowley who is coordinating the whole venture, have arranged that an American diplomat’s wife will give birth that very night to a son in an obscure hospital in the English countryside, which happens to be staffed by nuns from a Satanist order. This will allow a switch to be performed, leading to the devil’s child being brought up in a family which will provide him with the opportunity to plunge the world into the chaos that leads to Armageddon.
Alas, however, even infernal agents, like humans, are inclined to err. The switch is mishandled. So, eleven years later, as the forces of hell and those of heaven prepare to fight their last battle to the destruction of the Earth and the human species, nothing goes to plan.
Which isn’t such a bad thing for Crowley, and his opposite number, the angel Aziraphale. The two of them have grown used to life on earth and have come to enjoy it. No more antique bookshops? No more elegant cocktail bars? (I leave it to you to decide which is to the taste of which of these two). The prospect leaves them both distraught and, having come close to being friends down the centuries through which they have competed with each other, they collaborate to see if they can find a way of preventing Armageddon while avoiding the likely retribution of their respective heavenly and infernal hierarchies.
Throw into the mix a modern witch, who happens to be a descendant of Agnes Nutter, author of some “nice and accurate prophecies” which, are indeed, astonishingly accurate though sadly not always comprehensible until after the events have happened, and then include a misfit of a young man who becomes a witchfinder, and you have all the ingredients for a rollicking, funny and engaging tale. Since the ending is both satisfying and pointed, with the destruction of an object we might have expected to be treated as sacred, the novel has everything one could hope for to amuse and entertain.
Well worth it if you’re at a loose end and want some entertainment written with talent. And, like me, you're regretting the loss of Terry Pratchett. Enhanced, far from diminished, by Neil Gaiman.
You might think a collaboration between two authors, particularly two with such distinctive styles, would read like cut-and-paste, but the story flows along like a Lennon-McCartney composition. Knowing there can now never be anything quite like it again makes it all the more poignant.
Things really do look dire. Except, someone seems to have misplaced the Antichrist. And the angel and demon who have been keeping an eye on things since mankind were evicted from Eden? Well, they’ve become rather comfy with the way things are. And as they countdown continues, mayhem on an earth-shaking scale begins to unravel their best laid plans.
As familiar as an old pair of gloves; or perhaps the walking boots you’ve used for years.
That’s what it feels like to read this gem of a story from two of the most eccentric writers you will ever meet. Inventive; out there; wickedly funny; heavenly.
A superb recipe for disaster. I didn’t stop grinning from beginning to end.
The story is a rather irreverent take on Armageddon, at a surface inspection it’s clearly a parody of a very well known film but it’s easily arguably so so very much better than the film...isn’t that always the way? What the story is actually about is the eternal battle between good and evil as seen from a child’s point of view, it’s about human nature, immortal forces, life and hope.
I don’t leave reviews often, only when it really matters. Hand on heart I’m telling you that if you haven’t already then you need to discover these authors who mesh so well together in this book. Sir Terry Pratchett is sorely missed by millions but his legacy continues in print. I hope you find the review helpful, I wrote it from memory, now I’m off to reread this book.....
Armageddon approaches rapidly in a quiet unchanging idyllic corner of the British countryside, the AntiChrist has risen or Adam to his friends is accompanied by his faithful adorable Hellhound and it’s almost teatime. The end times are nigh, the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse meet up in a motorway cafe but an Angel; Aziraphael and a Demon; Crowley (of M25 infamy) are giving their all to stop that which was writ in Revelations as well as in The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter (Witch). The Witchfinder Army (both of them) are on the move but this time they’re working alongside a witch who not coincidentally happens to be a descendant of Agnes Nutter.
A short summary? An angel and a demon team up to try to stop the Apocalypse from happening when the Anti Christ reaches the correct age. Basically, it's a bit of a spoof on the movie The Omen except can you still consider a work in that parody category when it's arguably better written that it's source? Pratchett and Gaiman's styles of writing complement each other beautifully, bringing out the best in both and removing any perceived weakness someone could somehow relate to either. The characters are incredibly well rounded, and the humor of the book is such that it stands up to multiple re-readings and you will still find yourself gigging over sections.
The story is more than simply engaging, it's enveloping. The pace moves along at the correct speed, keeping you engrossed with each new word. You can't help but care about these characters, about the stakes that they are going through. Not just because the stakes are the end of the world but because we care about the characters and that is far more important, really.
Honestly? Good Omens is one of those books that I recommend to everyone. Because it is simply that good. It's a forever favourite and more people need to read it, really. Because Ineffability.