9 August 2014

Review: Necessary Evil and The Greater Good - Adam Ingle

Mestoph, a demon, and Leviticus, an angel, are bored with their day jobs in Hell Industries and Heaven Inc. so they concoct a plan to bring about the very thing that has been forestalled by their squabbling organisations; the end of the world. But the best laid plans of angels and demons oft go awry, and soon the pair find themselves chasing a Greek goddess to Iceland while fighting off various attempts at their lives.

This novel is insanely ambitious. It uses various mythologies, people and religions to great effect; Norse, Greek and Christian elements all fuse into one story-line, and what could have been entirely nonsensical actually turns into an amusing, confusing adventure. Let's not forget to mention cameo appearances from some of the worlds' most notorious bad guys and inspirational good guys.

Necessary Evil and the Greater Good is a novel to be taken with a pinch of salt. The adventure its-self is complex, convoluted and strangely compelling. I found myself constantly wondering what on earth could go wrong next for our characters.

Mestoph and Leviticus are both great characters in their own right, with Mestoph just winning out with his family issues and the fact he can't really get over his demonic tendancies. Although they are plotting the end of the world, you end up really rooting for them. My favourite, however, was Stephanie, a human who has got caught up in their plans. She deals with the situation really well, and is not afraid to voice her opinions and fight for her life is she needs to. I loved her dreams/nightmares and the way that they foreshadowed events to come. Coming up a close second in running for best character is Sir Reginald Pollywog Newcastle III, a little Scottie dog with a big personality and a rather large secret. My only critisism in these characters is that I never really found myself empathising with them, apart from Stephanie.

The ending was certainly the best part, and is particularly interesting if you happen to know a little bit about Norse mythology. The climax is huge and the scenes really keep you reading. However, it does tail off at the end with a couple of funny scenes and a fairly unexpected revelation.

All in all an entertaining read, but it did confuse me a little bit at the start and the middle as the plot got more complex. I think it was just a little too explanation heavy to begin with and that might have been why. It is definitely something for fans of Good Omens, as the style and the subject matter is similar, but it is is no way a rip off. It wasn't quite for me, but anyone who likes a good adventure and books that adult mythological retellings would definitely enjoy this book.

Thank you to the author who kindly gifted me a copy of this novel. This has not affected my rating.


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