Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett Review

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What’s better than Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett teaming up to write a book about angels, demons, the Antichrist, and the Apocalypse?

Absolutely nothing!

Recently, I’ve not exactly been in a reading slump – more I’ve read a lot of books in a row that I haven’t cared for or out and out hated. I was severely hoping that this one would change that, and give me something interesting to read.

I was not left disappointed, instead, I was overjoyed.

Good Omens is exactly what you would think a book written by the legends that are Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett – it’s witty and cleverly written, filled with tiny little details that other authors wouldn’t bother with.

The book itself follows the story of:

Crowley.

‚ÄúAn Angel who did not so much Fall as Saunter Vaguely Downwards.‚ÄĚ

Aziraphale.

‚ÄúMany people, meeting Aziraphale for the first time, formed three impressions: that he was English, that he was intelligent, and that he was gayer than a treeful of monkeys on nitrous oxide.‚ÄĚ

The Four Horseman Of The Apocolypse.

‚ÄúYou’re Hell’s Angels, then? What chapter are you from?’

‘REVELATIONS. CHAPTER SIX.‚ÄĚ

And the Antichrist himself.

‚ÄúPotentially evil. Potentially good, too, I suppose. Just this huge powerful potentiality waiting to be shaped.‚ÄĚ

All trying to either stop or start the apocalypse itself, depending what side they’re on.

Crowley, like his Supernatural counterpart, is a demon, on the more morally grey part of the scale. He’s actually friends with Aziraphale, a book-loving angel, and both of them like the world as it is. They like humanity’s degrees of good and bad, eating sushi, and listening to classic music in Crowley’s pristine¬†Bentley (though all cassettes turn into Queen’s Greatest Hits after spending two weeks in a car, without fail).

So, they’re trying to stop the Apocolypse, while the Four Horseman ride to start it, and the actual Antichrist has no idea who he is, or what he is doing. Combining them, and various other characters, including a witch, and witchfinder general, and a little boy called Wensleydale, it’s safe to say that the Apocolypse is going to turn out¬†very¬†interesting!

I loved every second of this book, actually kicked myself for not reading it sooner. It’s a brilliant¬†laugh for anybody who loves apocalyptic fiction. Especially those who like their classic stories with a twist.

 

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Illustrated chapter starting letters!

 

Intelligent, funny, and altogether fantastic. Good Omens is a must read for any fan of the Discworld, Neil Gaiman, or, well,¬†life.¬†This book will make you question ethics, the intelligence of children, whether there’s a point to an all-out war between Heaven and Hell, and just how good a demon can be. All while making you laugh, and whisking you away to Lower Tadfell, (no, seriously) on an adventure that’s hard to forget.

Hell may have all the best composers, and Heaven may have all the best choreographers, but Earth, when this was written, had the best writers, and this book is the culmination of the best writers creating pure magic. 

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The Invisible Library – Genevieve Cogman Review

REVIEW

An invisible library, filled with books taken from thousands of alternate worlds? Librarians, who go out to find books from these worlds? Some of these worlds infected with ‘chaos,’ and therefore have vampires, werewolves and other Fae creatures running around?

Sign me right up!

Except, that isn’t quite what I got.

Well, I¬†did¬†get that. I got the vampires, the Fae, the magical Library and it’s Librarians, trying to collect a certain version of Grimm’s Fairytales. But I didn’t really,¬†care¬†about it all.

Sure, the story line was incredibly inventive, and, quite frankly, like my ideal job, if I had the slightest bit of bravery in me. I just simply could not find myself to care about anything going on, and that was because of a few issues:

  1. The characters.
  2. Missing emotional context.
  3. Lack of common sense.

These three things all weave into each other, but essentially, our main character, Irene, is rather good at not seeing the obvious. Or even suspecting it. She’s too busy trying not to think about Kai, and trying to be a Good Librarian, that she doesn’t even consider several very obvious possibilities.

Without giving too much away, there’s an Evil Librarian, who is trying to kill Irene, her apprentice, Kai, and their associate, Vale. And when she gets betrayed by a fellow Librarian, she doesn’t stop to think that maybe, just¬†maybe,¬†the one betraying her is the one trying to kill her.

I don’t know about you, but if I was being hunted down by someone who’s gone rogue from my secret society, and then someone in my society betrayed me and left me to the mercy of¬†werewolves,¬†I’d think that maybe they were the same person. Or at least associated with each other.

But not Irene. She just continues to think that this is all because of her and her betrayer’s rivalry.

The same goes for when she finds out the other character’s secrets, she doesn’t pull them aside and get them to explain, or wonder why she’s been lied to. She just carries on, resolving to ask later on, and continuing to just¬†trust¬†her partner, who has¬†lied to her about who he is,¬†for the rest of the book.

Which was, frankly, infuriating. Which is the only emotion I felt through the entire book.

There are several scenes in this book that should have made me wince in pain, or at least feel something, but each one fell completely flat for me.

Irene is injured several times, and quite severely. Or she’s put in danger. Or she nearly dies. Each time, I could not have cared less. The scenes were described in such a way, that I felt nothing. Even during the fantastical scenes, such as a steam-powered centipede attacking the main characters, there was no shock or surprise.

At any point, I could have put the book down and never picked it back up again, and not cared one iota about the fate of the characters. Several times, I did put the book down on a cliff hanger and didn’t pick it back up for several days, and each time, I didn’t think once back to the characters fates.

The only reason why I finished the book was to avoid having another ‘DNF’ on my list because I hate doing that.

Essentially, I really, really did not care for this book at all. It had all the elements I love – steampunk, libraries, female protagonists who actually¬†do¬†something, along with¬†vampires,¬†and I just could not care about it. I wished I could have liked it, but I really couldn’t.

A great story idea, with brilliant plots, but poorly executed. But hey, at least the cover is pretty?

3/5 stars.