Thursday, June 16, 2011

Good Omens

Okay, I don't get it.

Last night, I finished reading Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, and I just don't get it. I've heard rumblings that this was a good book, and based on some of the introductory comments, I thought I was going to have a great read on my hands. I figured that I'd object to the theology of the book, but I was willing to set that aside to see what the fuss is about.

The concept was intriguing: an angel and a demon, two entities that should be on opposite sides of the on-going war between Heaven and Hell, wind up more as "frenemies." They discover they have more in common with each other than the others on their respective sides. So when they find out that the apocalypse is about to be unleashed on a world they've come to love, they decide they're going to do everything they can to stop it.

My problem with this book is that there's just too much. There are too many characters, from the four "horsemen" to the neophyte Antichrist to the dozen or so minor characters who find themselves caught up in the Last Things. And that sheer number of people, I think, is what diluted my enjoyment of this book. Aziraphale and Crowley, the angel and demon, are the prime movers in the first third of the book (and, I think, the most fascinating characters), but they largely disappear from the middle third, which is where I think the story kind of went off the rails.

Oh well. It would have been nice if I could have enjoyed this book, but I didn't. I'm sure the diehard fans of this book (and apparently there are quite a few) won't find my little corner of cyberspace. That's probably for the best.

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