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Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch
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2011 Reads > GO: My bridge from Pratchett to Gaiman

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Jared (jaredforshey) | 32 comments I originally bought this book because it was at the bookstore next to the Discworld novels I was intending to buy. Happily, it became my inadvertent introduction to Neil Gaiman, and was the book I chose to have Neil sign when he came to Cleveland last year. (I think he signed it "Happy Doomsday!").

Did this book introduce anyone else to one author or the other? Or both??


message 2: by Akeel (new)

Akeel Kasam | 4 comments Goods Omens not only introduced to me to both Gaiman and Pratchett but is was also my first book in the whole contemporary / urban fantasy sub-genre. The book was basically my gateway to the realization that fantasy just didn't to derive and imitate Tolkien and Arthurian legends.


Kate O'Hanlon (kateohanlon) | 778 comments I suppose Good Omens was my technical introduction to Neil Gaiman but it was years before I ever picked up another one of his books.
Pratchett's style and sense of humour is so recognizable that I think I must have dismissed Gaiman's influence in the book at the time. now that I'm more familiar with Gaiman's work I can see his 'stamp' on Good Omens so to speak, still I'm more confident recommending Good Omens to a Pratchett fan than a Gaiman fan.


Nate Frary | 19 comments It was the first Gaiman I ever read but not the first Pratchett. I would agree that Terry's influence is a lot more front and center. The dialogue, descriptions, and character quirks all scream Pratchett but the milieu is definitely more of a Gaiman world.


Rebecca (raitalle) | 52 comments I had heard of both authors before, but this was the first book I had read by either of them, so it was my introduction to both. It still is, actually; I haven't gotten around to reading any more of either yet, although they are definitely on my list. Since I don't know the authors individually, I can't really tell what parts are more Pratchett and which Gaiman, but what you guys are saying definitely makes sense to me based on what I've heard of them. I look forward to reading more of their work and finding out for myself too.


Sandi (sandikal) | 1212 comments I had actually read a couple of Gaiman's works before reading Good Omens, most memorably American Gods. After reading it, I read The Color of Magic by Terry Pratchett and was seriously underwhelmed. I'm not really big on that silly humor. (I don't like The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy either.) Humor is so subjective.

I really did love Good Omens. I laughed out loud so many times. I do think I probably laughed at parts that others might not have found funny. I kind of dread listening to the audio book because I think I'm really going to embarrass myself.


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Like Rebecca, this was my first book from either author. I then went on to a few Gaiman novels, but have yet to get to any other Pratchett.


message 8: by Jeremy (last edited Jan 14, 2011 12:11AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jeremy Paine | 13 comments I actually just finished (re)reading this at the beginning of December. This was my first experience with either author way back in the 90s, and I enjoyed it even more this go round having since gained a little experience with both. I love both Pratchett and Gaiman's style, and they combine to great effect here. Thoroughly enjoyable read!


message 9: by Jeremy (last edited Jan 14, 2011 12:18AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jeremy Paine | 13 comments Sandi wrote: "After reading it, I read The Color of Magic by Terry Pratchett and was seriously underwhelmed."

I'd give Terry another chance. I was a little disappointed with "Color..." too, but I came at the series out of order, and have enjoyed several of the other installments. I think the earlier Discworld books were a little rough around the edges, but I think the writing gets better in the later books. I'd give Going Postal a crack, as that's the one that reawakened my interest in the series after many years away. It's not terribly critical that they be read in order.

...and as long as I'm spouting unsolicited recomendations..., Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere is one of my favorite fantasy books of the past couple of years.


Jenny (Reading Envy) (readingenvy) | 2898 comments Sandi wrote: "I had actually read a couple of Gaiman's works before reading Good Omens, most memorably American Gods. After reading it, I read The Color of Magic by Terry Pratchett and was seriously underwhelmed. I'm not really big on that silly humor. (I don't like The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy either.) Humor is so subjective."

This is exactly what happened with me. I loved Gaiman but after reading Good Omens decided that Pratchett was the instigator of the silly, and never tried reading him until this month.


message 11: by Al (new)

Al | 159 comments My intro to Neil Gaiman was Preludes and Nocturnes. One of the best comic series ever.


Jenny (Reading Envy) (readingenvy) | 2898 comments I think the Sandman series is the best of Gaiman, and I've read almost everything he's written. So dark and funny and disturbing and beautiful, all of which is Gaiman through and through.


Jeremiah Mccoy (jeremiahtechnoirmccoy) | 80 comments I read Gaiman in Comics, before this book, but not his prose.


Jeremiah Mccoy (jeremiahtechnoirmccoy) | 80 comments Oh and I should add I read this book years ago. I have since read and loved most everything both writers have done.


message 15: by Adam (new) - rated it 3 stars

Adam Hansen (adamhansen85) | 8 comments One of my first Kindle books was The Color of Magic by Terry Pratchett, and like Sandi, I too was seriously underwhelmed. I am currently enjoying The Wee Free Men, so I may try some other Discworld novels. And I did enjoy reading Coraline by Neil Gaiman.


message 16: by Curt (last edited Jan 16, 2011 11:42AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Curt Eskridge | 90 comments I bought Good Omens in the Corgi edition at a Sci-Fi convention in the late eighties or the early nineties. I had Gaimen sign it a few years later at a comic shop and got the inscription - Burn this book. I later got it signed by Pratchett when he was touring the states for Thud!and Where's My Cow?: A Discworld Novel. Pratchett just said oh Neil.

I think it was the first Gaimen I read but I had bought his book about the Hitch Hikers Guide. I had been reading Gaimen's Sandman from about issue 12.

The Colour of Magic was the first Pratchett I bought and bounced a couple of times before I finished it. I don't recommend it as a starting point. Go with Guards! Guards! or The Wee Free Men.

There is a reading order guide here -> http://www.lspace.org/books/reading-o...
I would stick with it for the Watch books and the Death books. The Witches I would start with the Wee Free Men and read the Tiffany Aching books and then go back. I love the Wizard books for their academic settings.

I'm more of Pratchett fan than anything else.


message 17: by Adam (new) - rated it 3 stars

Adam Hansen (adamhansen85) | 8 comments Curt wrote: "There is a reading order guide here -> http://www.lspace.org/books/reading-orde...
I would stick with it for the Watch books and the Death books. The Witches I would start with the Wee Free Men and read the Tiffany Aching books and then go back. I love the Wizard books for their academic settings."


Thanks for posting this reading order guide for Discworld. I never quite knew where to start with the series.


Martin (mafrid) | 50 comments Jenny wrote: "Sandi wrote: "I had actually read a couple of Gaiman's works before reading Good Omens, most memorably American Gods. After reading it, I read The Color of Magic by Terry Pratchett and was seriously underwhelmed..."

This is exactly what happened with me. I loved Gaiman but after reading Good Omens decided that Pratchett was the instigator of the silly, and never tried reading him until this month. "


Having read the whole disc world series I would suspect that you've read some of the early books; such as The Color of Magic and The Light Fantastic.
They definitely fall into the realm of silly, but the later books are a lot less silly and with better character development and actual depth.
If you are up for it I would suggest trying Guards! Guards! before giving up completely on Pratchett. Guards! Guards! is also the first in the series centering around the city guard of Ankh-Morpork.


Jenny (Reading Envy) (readingenvy) | 2898 comments Martin wrote: "If you are up for it I would suggest trying Guards! Guards! before giving up completely on Pratchett. Guards! Guards! is also the first in the series centering around the city guard of Ankh-Morpork. ..."
No, the only taste of Pratchett that I had that turned me off initially was Good Omens, actually. But I got curious about the witch books, so I'm on the third Tiffany Aching one now. Kind of a back door into Pratchett, I suppose.


message 20: by Curt (new) - rated it 4 stars

Curt Eskridge | 90 comments Adam wrote: "Curt wrote: "There is a reading order guide here -> http://www.lspace.org/books/reading-orde...
I would stick with it for the Watch books and the Death books. The Witches I would start with the Wee..."


That reading order guide is missing the latest Tiffany book I Shall Wear Midnight and Unseen Academicals which is an upstairs/downstairs sort of story in the Unseen University.


message 21: by Kate (last edited Jan 17, 2011 04:00PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kate O'Hanlon (kateohanlon) | 778 comments Curt wrote: "Adam wrote: "Curt wrote: "There is a reading order guide here -> http://www.lspace.org/books/reading-orde...
I would stick with it for the Watch books and the Death books. The Witches I would start..."



Unseen Academicals in there, between The Last Hero: A Discworld Fable and A Collegiate Casting out of Devilish Devices... meaning that the the reading order guide is wrong *gasp* because surely A Collegiate comes before Unseen Academicals because *incredibly mild spoiler* the Dean is at the meeting.


message 22: by Linda (new)

Linda (lindawilkins) I'm new to both Gaiman and Pratchett. In fact, I'm fairly new to the genre. I found the Sword & Laser podcast one day a few months back, and although I read some books that fall into a fantasy genre, such as Game of Thrones and Her Majesty's Dragon, I have not gotten into anything that would be considered SciFi (I think). So, I ordered this book to join the discussion. I can't wait to get it and start reading, it really sounds fascinating.


Jason G Gouger (jason_g) | 50 comments I'm really not a fan of Pratchett. I tried getting into Discworld because it gets raved about so much but I couldn't do it.

Gaiman though is one of my favorite authors of all time.


message 24: by Don (new) - rated it 1 star

Don | 80 comments I have read The Graveyard Book and Stardust by Gaiman. I loved both. This is my first Prachett. I'm in Chapter Three. I can see the shape of the humor, the template is there, but it doesn't strike me as funny most of the time. I can see how others might enjoy it. It's subjective. This strikes me as silly and very light weight. I think I will move on to something more engaging. I wish I were a faster reader. Perhaps it develops into something.


message 25: by Don (new) - rated it 5 stars

Don (walsfeo) | 37 comments Jeremy wrote: "Sandi wrote: "After reading it, I read The Color of Magic by Terry Pratchett and was seriously underwhelmed."

I'd give Terry another chance. I was a little disappointed with "Color......"


I agree with both of you. Rincewind books are not as engaging, and the first two are before Sir Terry found his style and had all the bumps worked out. They are still worth reading, but not as good as the Guards or Witches books.


message 26: by Dominik (last edited Jan 21, 2011 05:21AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Dominik Gassen | 2 comments Just my two cents: I had read "Good Omens" years ago and had been reading both Pratchett and Gaiman before. While I was pretty enthusiastic about the concept of two of my favourite authors collaborating I enjoyed the book but not as much as I had expected.
For me, it ranks clearly behind several works of both as single authors. So - here's my thoughts on why:
I've read that Pratchett was the one who did the first drafts and was mainly in charge of the plot development and timing. Now, while I certainly am a huge fan of his books, his storylines have never been the selling point for me - it was always about language, humour and characters. The stories were good enough too keep me interested but - most of the time - not much more. On the other hand stories are something that I think Gaiman does exceptionally well (of couse, next to a lot of other things).
So - maybe it was just a bit of miscalculation on who should best contribute what in this partnership. From that perspective I would urge them to try again - not that there is a chance of that happening anytime soon...


message 27: by Don (new) - rated it 5 stars

Don (walsfeo) | 37 comments Dominik wrote: "For me, it ranks clearly behind several works of both as single authors."

While I really enjoyed the book I agree 100%. I hadn't really thought about why it wasn't as rich a read as a normal Gaiman or as rollicking a good time as Prachett's normal offerings, but your analysis seems to be spot on.


message 28: by [deleted user] (new)

I'm just starting the "Wednesday" section, but I'm not especially keen on this book so far. Something about it feels very jittery, so it isn't a relaxing read for me, and there are too many characters for me to keep track of without effort. Rather than funny, I'm finding this book annoying.


Craig | 53 comments Donald wrote: "Jeremy wrote: "Sandi wrote: "After reading it, I read The Color of Magic by Terry Pratchett and was seriously underwhelmed."

I'd give Terry another chance. I was a little disappointed..."


Donald wrote: "Jeremy wrote: "Sandi wrote: "After reading it, I read The Color of Magic by Terry Pratchett and was seriously underwhelmed."

I'd give Terry another chance. I was a little disappointed..."


The Rincewind stories are not as great as those others, but on the otherhand, Rincewind is the most widely traveled of the characters (even the Luggage that he inherited from Twoflower has legs). They are some of the best of the books if you want to get a good overview of the discworld itself.


terpkristin | 4211 comments Funny to see some of the more recent comments in this thread. I've actually read Good Omens before, about 6 years ago (I think--I know I was in grad school when I read it). At the time, I hadn't read any Terry Pratchett (ok, I still haven't, though I do have 2 Discworld books on my shelf and have ambitions to read them--The Color of Magic and The Light Fantastic) and hadn't read any Neil Gaiman, either (but I've read much more from him since then).

I remember really enjoying the book and rated it 4 stars when I added it to my Goodreads library when I joined. However, on this "read" through (this time, I'm listening to the audiobook; the first time I borrowed a dead tree copy from my friend), I'm finding I'm not enjoying it as much as I did then. Somehow, I'm finding it less engaging. I'm not sure why. If this were my first "reading" of the book, I'd probably rate it 2 or 3 stars. I wonder if doing the audio version has anything to do with it--I'm finding it easier to get distracted and harder to follow some of the characters (surprising, since I rarely have that problem with audiobooks in general and I've actually read this before so I think I'd be less lost as it were).


Colin | 278 comments I got into Pratchett before Gaiman. Pratchett i've found to be great, the Rincewind books, Hogfather, Going Postal. However, i haven't been able to read them all consecutively. I love the humour, and i love the one-off characters that appear, but to have too much of it over a long period of time is like having so much candy your teeth and gums start bleeding. Than being said, Cohen the Barbarian and the Silver Horde are one of the best groups of characters ever created. I could stand books and books of them, with all the bleeding gums that would come with it.

Gaiman on the other hand, i read Neverwhere first, thought it was very interesting. I was then given Anansi Boys, and i wasn't that big of a fan. I then started reading some of his blog, and i started to be more a fan of the author himself than the books he wrote. I then read The Graveyard Book, and Odd and the Frost Giants in fairly close order, and must say that i am becoming more of a fan of his books again.


Jenny (Reading Envy) (readingenvy) | 2898 comments Colin wrote: "Gaiman on the other hand, i read Neverwhere first, thought it was very interesting. I was then given Anansi Boys, and i wasn't that big of a fan. I then started reading some of his blog, and i started to be more a fan of the author himself than the books he wrote...."
He does have such an engaging online presence. He won me over back with the satanic tomato. If I hadn't already been a fan, the statue wedding would have sealed it!


Craig | 53 comments Colin wrote: "I got into Pratchett before Gaiman. Pratchett i've found to be great, the Rincewind books, Hogfather, Going Postal. However, i haven't been able to read them all consecutively. I love the humour..."

Yes, Cohen is one of my favorite characters. As far as I remember you only come across him in the Rincewind books, so another reason why they are not to be missed.


Craig | 53 comments Jenny wrote: "Colin wrote: "Gaiman on the other hand, i read Neverwhere first, thought it was very interesting. I was then given Anansi Boys, and i wasn't that big of a fan. I then started reading some of his bl..."

He also tweets @neilhimself


message 35: by Curt (new) - rated it 4 stars

Curt Eskridge | 90 comments The Wikipedia Article has a description of the writing process for this novel. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Good_Omens

It seems like they rewrote each other so much that it it was a pretty even collaboration.


message 36: by Jlawrence, S&L Moderator (new) - rated it 3 stars

Jlawrence | 964 comments Mod
This is my first time reading Pratchett. Read a fair deal of Gaiman, I've liked his fiction and LOVE the Sandman series.

Curiously, Pratchett + Gaiman seemed to = Douglas Adams for me. I often felt like I was reading Revelation as if it were re-told by Douglas Adams. Maybe this is the influence of Pratchett's style of humor. Unfortunately, it kept reminding me of Adams, and I kept comparing Good Omens unfavorably to Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Good Omens was amusing enough, but nothing in it was memorable as Marvin, the Improbability Drive, the answer 42, etc.

Nevertheless, I want to read at least one Discworld book sometime.


message 37: by Paul (new) - rated it 5 stars

Paul Davidson (paulbd) This is the first time I have ever read any Pratchett. I read American Gods a couple months ago as my first dealings with Gaiman. I wish I read Good Omens first now looking back. I believe if I did that I would of enjoyed American Gods much more. I also keep trying to convince myself to read The Sandman. If they ever get comixology for the Nook Color I might finally breakdown and do it.


message 38: by Linda (new)

Linda (lindawilkins) Just received Good Omens from Amazon. Now that it's in my hot little hands I can't wait to get started....off I go...


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