Top critical review
tries so hard to be funny it's just not.
Reviewed in the United States on July 17, 2017
This is my 3rd Neil Gainman book. American Gods was amazing, Anansi Boys was find, but Good Omens let me down. Here's the thing: the more witticisms and jokes you try to cram in a book the more likely you are, by the law of probability, that most of them will be duds. You are much more likely to succeed if you keep the jokes to a minimum, but make sure those few are really good. As others said, this book tries way too hard to be funny. Don't write a book with the declared intention of it being "hilarious" or "the funniest book you'll ever read", because you only raise expectations to an unrealistic level. Much better to write it as a very good story, and the funny parts will be the icing on the cake.
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.