Friday, June 24, 2011

And Finally... Good Omens

It was fortunate and timely that the publisher released a new hardcover edition of Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett's Good Omens in 2006.

Flash back to high school (the book was originally released in 1990 and I graduated in 1999) when classmates were passing this book around laughing out loud and reading passages aloud in the band room. Now flash forward to 2004 when Mike and I "met." (We went to the same high school with those same people.) Mike read a bit, but by no means did he have a collection. And being a book junkie, everyone gets books as gifts at some point. So Good Omens seemed like a good gift possibility at some point. And it's become his favorite book since.

So the new edition also became a good gift option. Love it when it's that easy. And then an even better "gift" opportunity was when Terry Pratchett came to town and signed it. And then Neil Gaiman came, but we didn't get to get him to sign it. Too many people.

Anyway. The new edition came out around the time that the original paperback edition I bought him got smooshed with a banana in a work tote one afternoon. (So ours didn't end up in the bath, but did get ruined. See new edition foreword.) And Mike's been trying to get me to read this for just about the whole time.

So I finally did.

Good Omens is the end of the world via Pratchett's and Gaiman's particular views of the world. They're smart. British smart. And British funny to boot. Which makes Good Omens a read that appeals to a wide range of folks.

My favorite parts, though, are the notes from the authors. The foreword, the interview, Neil Gaiman on Terry Pratchett, and Terry Pratchett on Neil Gaiman. I actually have found this kind of thing appealing for a while: the writer looking back after years of success and talking about what it was like when... Dan Simmons's new edition of Summer of Night arrived this week with his own retrospective comments on that book coupled with reading Gaiman's and Pratchett's this week have all struck a chord with me. King's updated intro on The Gunslinger was another one I loved. I'm looking forward to cracking open Gaiman's American Gods now, too.

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