©1990 Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett; (P)2009 HarperCollins Publishers
"Pratchett (of Discworld fame) and Gaiman (of Sandman fame) may seem an unlikely combination, but the topic (Armageddon) of this fast-paced novel is old hat to both. Pratchett's wackiness collaborates with Gaiman's morbid humor; the result is a humanist delight to be savored and reread again and again." (Amazon.com review)
I have had this book in print format since 1990 and have probably read it at least 15 times. It has always made me feel better when I was a little depressed and I have been waiting for it to come to Audible US even since I saw it on the British Audible website (www.audible.co.uk). It is a wonderfully funny book with much to say about what we call "the human condition" and I love it, but I feel I should warn potential readers that the humor is decidedly British. When my sister read this book her comment was that she thought it was trying to be funny, but she kept missing the point of the jokes. So while I strongly recommend this book, that recommendation is mostly aimed at those who understand and appreciate British humor.
I have only one complaint about the way this book was read. Martin Jarvis should have paid more attention to those places in the book where line spacing was used to separate different threads of the story. Normally readers, when coming across those kind of breaks, supply their own silence to let listeners know that a different story thread is picking up, but Mr. Jarvis often runs directly from one thread to another without supplying any audio indication that the story line was changing. This is a minor point, but I found it annoying at times.
With the above caveats I heartily recommend this book to any Neal Gaiman or Terry Pratchett readers!
I read this book in print form as a major fan of Terry Pratchett, and frankly only managed to get through it by trying to pick out the parts that Terry Pratchett wrote.
Listening to this book, however, is a completely different experience. The narrator is fantastic, and the story just takes shape, gripping you with characters which just burst to life and set you laughing out loud, looking like a crazy person to everyone on the bus. This happens to me quite a lot, though, and if you can't take a joke by now, you're not worthy of this book.
I fear I will never be such a Neil Gaiman fan as I am a Terry Pratchett fan, but I can say that Gaiman's books translate into audio far better than Terry Prachett's, and I highly recommend them.
Of course, "Good Omens" is an easy choice for any shopper. If you haven't read it before or especially if you have, the audiobook is a pleasure to listen to!
Once I heard Martin Jarvis reading in the character's voices, I can no longer imagine their voices any other way. Jarvis hits the nail on the head with Aziraphale's mild personality and Crowley's "flash bastard" attitude.
My only problem is the lack of a distinct pause between scene changes. As the book does this often, I quickly got used to paying attention to the new scene. It would certainly not dissuade me from buying the audiobook.
I really enjoyed this book - I love the dry English humor and snickered a lot, especially at the first. The only caveat I would add to my review is that it seemed to bog down a little at the end.
If you like Neil Gaiman, and if you like Terry Pratchett, you're going to adore this book. What a great pairing of authors and a wonderful narrator. There is enough snarky humor in this little story to go around to the Brits and the Americans. It's well written, made me laugh out loud and I couldn't wait to get to it each day. If you don't enjoy British humor, you may not enjoy this book or understand the subtleties. However, anyone who can make you laugh at the Apocalypse and has the Four Horsemen on motorcycles is awesome in my opinion. Well done!! Thank you Mr.s Gaiman and Pratchett! Do another one please?
There is no doubt that Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett are two of the most clever current writers. That said, their incredible creativity did not keep this book from seeming interminable. There were characters, while "interesting" or "entertaining" didn't seem to have much at all to do with the plot or the story and I thought there were just there because the authors couldn't give them up. While I will continue to read both Gaiman and Pratchett, I don't feel this book exemplifies the best of either/both of them.
Regarding the reader ... about 80-90% he was good, but he just didn't do the 11 year olds very well .. they all sounded OLD and hearing him made it hard to keep their ages in context. Also, sometimes I couldn't tell which character was speaking until he told me, versus a really great reader where you just "know" who it is by the voice and/or inflection.
Douglas R. Pratt
One of the best performances I've ever heard of one of my favorite books. The more you know about religions, mysticism and history, the funnier this book will be for you...a lot of the jokes are pretty "inside-baseball" and I found myself explaining them to friends and family. Nice to finally get some use out of my college degree in comparative religion. I would recommend this book to anyone, angel or demon or even human.
This was an absolutely amazing book. It's probably not for everyone, though. If you have very strong religious sensibilities, you may not think it's funny. If you didn't like Hitchhikers Guide or Life of Brian, you may not like it. If, however, you think Douglas Adams and Monty Python are a joy, then sit down and start listening. You'll be glad you did.
History and Politics Professor at the American University of Iraq; lover of BBC Radio 4 comedies, Histories, and the occasional novel.
This has been one of my print favorites for a decade, and I don't know why it has taken so long to get to audio, but it's finally here! A great, hilarious, even thought provoking journey through the End Days. If you like Mssrs. Gaiman or Pratchett's other works, or Monty Python, Douglas Adams or British humor in general, pick it up! You won't be sorry.
"... there are times when silence is a poem." - John Fowles, the Magus ^(;,;)^
Cute, probably 3.5 stars, but not nearly as good as the hype. I liked both 'American Gods' and 'Neverwhere' a lot better. I guess that is the problem with joint projects, I'm not sure whether Pratchett or Gaiman should be praised or panned for this book. Yes, it was funny. Yes, it was irreverent too. It just wasn't great. Perhaps, its limitations were built into the core concept and blueprint of the book. Perhaps, it couldn't escape mediocrity because it was pulled in two different directions by two good authors and instead of ending in Heaven or Hell it just plopped right there in the middle.
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