Good Omens by Terry Pratchett


Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch is a contemporary and comedic fantasy written by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett in 1990. The collaboration between two of the finest fantasy authors of our generation is nothing short of brilliant, and while they both shared everything equally and did it for fun, Pratchett has said they wouldn't do it again for a big clock.

The antichrist has been born, the four bikers of apocalypse have gathered, its the end of the world as we know it and its all happening in the small english suburb of Lower Tadfield. This is not the news the angel Aziraphale and the demon Crowley had been hoping for as they have become quite accustomed to their lives on earth and are starting to have second thoughts about the whole Armageddon thing. Despite being mortal enemies they decide to work together to help raise the antichrist in the hope that when it comes time for the apocalypse, the antichrist might just decide not to carry through with it. If only those meddling satanic nuns hadn't got to him first...

Good Omens is by far one of the funniest works of fiction I have ever read. Pratchett and Gaiman have managed to create a story that weaves together large doses of satire, cynicism, slapstick and wacky unconventional humour into a cohesive yet suprisingly accurate observation of human life all over the world. The characters, one of the biggest strengths in this book, bring a lot charm and humour to the book by managing to be both unique yet stereotypically British at the same time.

The side plots are are another strength of this story that despite being seemingly random and independent stories are actually laying a solid foundation for the main plot by providing lot of relevant background information and support. This is a fun story that uses these side plots to make light of what can be some very serious and topical themes. While the side plots themselves are a strength, the haphazard way in which they are a told is a slight weakness as they can sometimes be confusing and hard to follow, especially if you haven't picked up the book for a few days. Also there are a few side plots and characters in there that do not really add a great deal to the story and feel like they are just there to grab a few cheap laughs. In the bigger scheme of things these are very minor gripes and do little to detract from what is well thought out, well paced and enjoyable story.

The description above barely scratches the surface of what is a very broad yet complex array of characters and plots because I needed a limit to prevent my nice and accurate review from becoming an overwhelming and unwieldly beast. There is so much going on, so many little details to keep track of, and yet it still manages to come together quite nicely to form a great story about what it means to be human.

Review by

6 positive reader review(s) for Good Omens

More Terry Pratchett reviews

A Blink of the Screen

A Blink of the Screen charts the course of Pratchett's long writing career: from his schooldays through to his first writing job on the Bucks Free Press,; to the origin [...]

The Long Earth

1916: the Western Front. Private Percy Blakeney wakes up. He is lying on fresh spring grass. He can hear birdsong, and the wind in the leaves in the trees. Where have the m [...]

The Long War

A generation after the events of The Long Earth, mankind has spread across the new worlds opened up by Stepping. Where Joshua and Lobsang once pioneered, now fleets of airs [...]

The Long Utopia

2045-2059. After the cataclysmic upheavals of Step Day and the Yellowstone eruption humanity is spreading further into the Long Earth, and society, on a battered Datum Eart [...]


On the day the world ends... Mau is on his way home from the Boys' Island. Soon he will be a man. And then the wave comes - a huge wave, dragging black night behind it [...]

The Compleat Ankh-Morpork City Guide

Greetings, adventurer! We lay before you this most comprehensive gazetteer encompassing all the streets of Ankh-Morpork, as well as information on its principal businesses, [...]

The World of Poo

From Snuff: 'Vimes' prompt arrival got a nod of approval from Sybil, who gingerly handed him a new book to read to Young Sam. Vimes looked at the cover. The ti [...]


Come one come all to greatest city in the world. In London, all men are free, the streets are lined with gold and the naughty ladies are friendly to all. In London there ar [...]

The Carpet People

In the beginning, there was nothing but endless flatness. Then came the Carpet... That's the old story everyone knows and loves. But now the Carpet is home to many diff [...]

The Colour Of Magic

In the beginning there was…a turtle. Somewhere on the frontier between thought and reality exists the Discworld, a parallel time and place which might sound and smel [...]

Lords and Ladies

The fairies are back – but this time they don’t just want your teeth… It's Midsummer Night - no time for dreaming. Because sometimes, when there' [...]

Feet of Clay

For Commander Vimes, Head of Ankh-Morpork City Watch, life consists of troubling times, linked together by…well, more troubling times. Right now, it’s the latt [...]


Good Omens reader reviews

from South Africa

"I laughed. I cried. One day I'll even read it." – Groucho Marx Here's the thing: if you are lucky enough to have read this book, a book with Dukes of Hell and bikers of the Apocalypse and a demon who drives a Bentley through the English countryside all the while not giving a damn about the stiff British upper lip plus a seriously hilarious cast (some that are experts at lurking and some that are totally confused on whose side they're on) where you even gotta love the baddies – well then, you are one of the lucky ones to have read Good Omens. Truth: my girlfriend has forbidden me to read this in bed because I break out into hysterical giggles so often she can't sleep. So she can't function the next day. We are suing Messrs Pratchett and Gaiman for writing the funniest book ever!

from USA

Hands down one of the best books I have ever read, and re-read, and re-read.

from U.S.

One of my favorite books of all time, I've read it countless times. Read my entire review here:

from England

Can't remember how long ago I first read this but it still has the ability to make me laugh out loud just thinking about some passages... read it, if only for the bit about Death, the four bikers, the motorway cafe, the quiz machine, the other three Horsemen of the Apocalypse, and the joke about Elvis (no, really.)

from Germany

Concerning the 'extra characters who do not add much to the book' - I disagree. On the first read-through, it's true that one find oneself craving more of the stage-stealing Azi and Crowley, but the presence of all the human characters in particular is essential in a book that is *about* humanity and how important it is. Those scenes are needed to give context to the main characters' decision to side with them at the end. Excellent review, however. :)

from NYC

READ THIS BOOK! Even if you are not a fantasy fan you will enjoy this book. This book is a combination of the best these two great authors have to offer. Gaiman is an incredible plot weaver who is able to temper some of the obviousness of Pratchet's puns. The main characters are hilarious and you can't help but love this quirky cast.

9.9/10 from 7 reviews

Write a reader review

Your rating out of 10

Books you may also enjoy

Red Dwarf: Better Than Life

by Grant Naylor

Rimmer, Cat and Kryten are trapped in a computer game which can transport players directly to the world of imagination, a world where each player can enjoy fabulous success [...]

Published: 1990

Score: 95

Our rating: 9.5 | 0 positive reader reviews


Bloody Rose

by Nicholas Eames

Live fast, die young.Tam Hashford is tired of working at her local pub, slinging drinks for world-famous mercenaries and listening to the bards sing of adventur [...]

Published: 2018

Score: 93

Our rating: 9.3 | 0 positive reader reviews


Knights of the Dead God

by James Jakins

The half-orc girl, Mikaia Goretusk, has been torn from her home. Her world. Her family. Her only allies are the holy knight, Arthur Shield, once sworn to kill everyone she [...]

Published: 2018

Score: 93

Our rating: 9.2 | 1 positive reader reviews


War God Rising

by Tim Marquitz

Sand is destined for greatness. Or so a pair of two-bit criminals would have him believe. After rescuing him from certain doom, Bess and Kaede embark on a scheme to game th [...]

Published: 2016

Score: 90

Our rating: 9.0 | 0 positive reader reviews