By Lauren Burnham
Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch. The full title is a bit of a mouthful, so the common populace mostly just refers to it as Good Omens, or ‘that one thing with the gay angel’. Both alternative titles are particularly apt, although one may confuse the latter with a certain paranormal drama. The full title suggests that Agnes Nutter, a little old lady from way-back-when, is the protagonist, and that this is her story. This title is misleading, although not entirely untrue, as she did write it down years before our actual protagonists had the smallest of inklings that the End Was Nigh.
Good Omens, written by the esteemed Neil Gaiman, and Sir Terry Pratchett, is set in 90s London. The 1990s, mind, not something strange like the 1190’s, or god forbid (insert year Crowley slept through here)’s. We meet our two Supernatural Agents right at the very beginning, the very start, the grand opening, the- you understand. Our two Agents are A.J. Crowley, agent of Hell and all around suave guy, and Aziraphale, agent of Heaven and rare book collector. They are the most likely contenders for the protagonists of this story, but they have a bit of a competition going with the Antichrist, Adam Young, or perhaps even Hells Angels. It’s a bit of a time, really, trying to decide who’s bit had the greatest impact on the story.
I personally, love this book. I was introduced to Aziraphale and Crowley a while before I picked up the book, and I had loved the characters before reading it, which skewed my view a tad on those two in particular. But when I opened to the first page, to the prologue, the aftermath of Eden, and the first rainstorm on Earth. Then, I turn the page and to a cast list. Like a ‘this is a play, here are the characters and their actors’ cast list. This is not a play, although the characters are actors in their own right. They even had their own podcast, at one point. The story itself is convoluted, tricky, marvelous, high-five, fist bump, secret hand-shake worthy. It is just that good. It’s mostly centered around Christian mythology, what with all the Angels and Demons and eleven-year-old Antichrist wandering about the English countrysides. You’ve got your four horsemen of the apocalypse, your dukes of hell, the odd heavenly or slovenly communication from the higher ups. And they are all different kinds of giggly, believe me. If you have no idea what’s happening, not to worry! Footnotes. Mostly of the slightly informative mostly trivial manner, but good stuff all the same.
Long story short, read this book. It’s pretty damn fabulous.