Title: Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch.
Author: Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman
Published: HarperTorch (1990)
My Rating: 4/5
After finishing N0S4A2 by Joe Hill, I needed something funny and lighthearted. Good Omens seemed right up my alley and it's been on my "to-read" list for years. I finally decided to make it a priority and am glad I did.
I enjoyed this book quite a bit. I'm always down for a humorous take on religion, the end of the world, god, satan and all that are considered to participate in the apocalypse.
An angel (Aziraphale) and demon (Crowley) have been friends since the beginning of time. Aziraphale and Crowley (formally known as Crawly--the serpent who tempted Adam and Eve) have known for their entire existence that the end of the world would come, but darn it, they sorta like living on Earth. And, they kind of became friends. They made comfortable lives and were noticeably bummed that the antichrist was of age to bring on the end times. The Four Horsemen of Death ride motorcycles--War (who was a female!), Famine, Pollution and Death. The Antichrist is an 11 year old boy named Adam who was raised by human parents and really has no idea what is expected of him. There are prophecies foretold by a crazy (and dead) witch named Agnes Nutter and deciphered by her descendent, Anathema Device. The oncoming apocalypse is seen from the viewpoints of all those mentioned above.
Set in a little town in England called Lower Tadfield, where nothing of any importance usually happens, fish rain from the sky and the end of the world is nigh. Will the world end? Will an 11 year old boy realize that he is in fact, the spawn of Satan? Your guess would probably be as good as mine because I had no idea what would happen until the very last few chapters.
I enjoyed Crowley most of all. There's a passage about his houseplants that really amused me:
“He had heard about talking to plants in the early seventies, on Radio Four, and thought it was an excellent idea. Although talking is perhaps the wrong word for what Crowley did. What he did was put the fear of God into them. More precisely, the fear of Crowley. In addition to which, every couple of months Crowley would pick out a plant that was growing too slowly, or succumbing to leaf-wilt or browning, or just didn't look quite as good as the others, and he would carry it around to all the other plants. "Say goodbye to your friend," he'd say to them. "He just couldn't cut it. . . " Then he would leave the flat with the offending plant, and return an hour or so later with a large, empty flower pot, which he would leave somewhere conspicuously around the flat. The plants were the most luxurious, verdant, and beautiful in London. Also the most terrified.”