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1. In The Beginning 
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Post 1. In The Beginning
In The Beginning

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Thu Jun 03, 2010 4:44 pm
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Post Re: 1. In The Beginning
Who wants to get the ball rolling?

You may have noticed that the first chapter, "In The Beginning," is only a few pages long, so I hope at least a few people have read at least that much by now. Does anyone have any thoughts or questions about the conversation between the demon and the angel at the gates of Eden during the Fall of Man, or on anything else put forth in this prologue?

I'm excited to hear everyone's thoughts, but the question is, who wants to go first? ;)



Fri Jun 04, 2010 11:40 pm
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Post Re: 1. In The Beginning
Well, I have officially gone and done it. I took the place mark out of Don Quixote, yes, so sad for me, I will never know the wonders of DQ and my intellectual growth will be permanently stunted, but, it gives me a place mark for "Good Omens"! :clap:

And I am very excited that you are the discussion leader bleach!



Sat Jun 05, 2010 4:27 pm
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Post Re: 1. In The Beginning
:blush: Awww. I'm not that great. Just excited to discuss this book. I can't wait to hear what you think of this prologue when you finish it! :)



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Sat Jun 05, 2010 6:59 pm
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Post Re: 1. In The Beginning
Waiting for my copy to arrive! :D



Sat Jun 05, 2010 8:01 pm
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Post Re: 1. In The Beginning
I'll be here when everyone's ready. :)



Sun Jun 06, 2010 12:24 am
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Post Re: 1. In The Beginning
Okay. I'm here! Just finished reading the Prologue. First off, I just have a silly comment to make on the fact that I found it highly amusing that the serpent's name was Crawly. There's just something about that name that makes me laugh, and I guess it's even funnier being paired with a serpent sent to do Hell's bidding. That's my random thought of the day.

Secondly, I noticed this little tidbit in my second reading of the chapter. (Note: I tend to read far too into details. :D ) In the first paragraph, it's mentioned that rain has not been invented yet, and yet, the angel is shielding himself from the first drops. I suppose it just goes with the territory that, as an angel, Aziraphale was aware of what is going to come from the clouds. If not, how was he to know that anything would fall from the clouds?

I find this short little insight into the Fall of Man quite interesting, with representatives of Good and Evil chatting together at the gate like a pair of drinking buddies.


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Sun Jun 06, 2010 5:53 pm
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Post Re: 1. In The Beginning
Seraphim wrote:
Okay. I'm here! Just finished reading the Prologue. First off, I just have a silly comment to make on the fact that I found it highly amusing that the serpent's name was Crawly. There's just something about that name that makes me laugh, and I guess it's even funnier being paired with a serpent sent to do Hell's bidding. That's my random thought of the day.


This is indeed funny, but moreso if you remember from the Bible that the serpent once walked on feet, or at least hands and feet, and was cursed to slither on the ground for his act in tempting Adam and Eve to eat the fruit. This enhances why the name "Crawly" doesn't sit well with Crawly, because he was not supposed to be reduced to crawling. Something I never thought I'd say when reading fiction, but some Biblical knowledge is actually very helpful when reading this novel, and adds to better understanding of events and humor in the book. But we won't get too nitpicky, and everyone will bring in different details from their views, and I welcome this. :) So yes, the tempter being called "Crawly" is very funny, and you're right to laugh at it. Thanks for sharing!

Seraphim wrote:
Secondly, I noticed this little tidbit in my second reading of the chapter. (Note: I tend to read far too into details. :D ) In the first paragraph, it's mentioned that rain has not been invented yet, and yet, the angel is shielding himself from the first drops. I suppose it just goes with the territory that, as an angel, Aziraphale was aware of what is going to come from the clouds. If not, how was he to know that anything would fall from the clouds?

I find this short little insight into the Fall of Man quite interesting, with representatives of Good and Evil chatting together at the gate like a pair of drinking buddies.


I'm glad you noticed the relationship between Crawly and Aziraphale as "drinking buddies," as that will be a driving force throughout the rest of the book. It sounds counterintuitive to everything we are taught in the Judeo-Christian dogma of heaven and hell, but Gaiman and Pratchett suggest here that even the agents of the Almighty and the Lord of the Underworld are not beyond questioning the "ineffable" plan and joining forces to reach their own ends and not their masters'. Good eye, and I'm glad you find it amusing, because it only gets better. ;)

As for the rain, the first paragraph says that rain had not been invented yet, "But clouds massing east of Eden (does anyone else see the Steinbeck reference here? ;)) suggested the first thunderstorm was on its way, and it was going to be a big one."

It seems to me here that the first thunderstorm is coming because the Fall of Man has already happened, and thus God will no longer allow it to be nice all the time. The end of the chapter mentions the early thunder rumbles of a storm, and we are told "It was going to be a dark and stormy night," another cliched literary reference we're all familiar with. Thanks for noticing the rain, as I think it is an important element in this prologue. :)

Also keep in mind Aziraphale's missing sword, and the fire the humans are cowering around at the end of this prologue. This suggests that it is Aziraphale who gives the humans fire (since Prometheus wouldn't be part of the mythos this book is based on), and remember the missing sword, because it will come into play later. ;) This also gives us the beginning of a notion that the angel is not as angelic as he ought to be, because he gives fire to the humans when he wasn't told to, and that Crawly, questioning whether or not what he did was bad or good, is not necessarily the agent of evil HE ought to be. We are being set up here to question not only the agents of the Almighty and his Nemesis, but also the nature and plan of the Almighty Himself. This, as I have said, is the driving force of the novel, and I think this prologue sets us up very well for the events which are to follow.

Anyone else have any comments or interesting tidbits they noticed? :)



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Post Re: 1. In The Beginning
bleachededen wrote:
As for the rain, the first paragraph says that rain had not been invented yet, "But clouds massing east of Eden (does anyone else see the Steinbeck reference here? ;)) suggested the first thunderstorm was on its way, and it was going to be a big one."


I noticed that reference as well. :D

bleachededen wrote:
Also keep in mind Aziraphale's missing sword, and the fire the humans are cowering around at the end of this prologue. This suggests that it is Aziraphale who gives the humans fire (since Prometheus wouldn't be part of the mythos this book is based on), and remember the missing sword, because it will come into play later. ;) This also gives us the beginning of a notion that the angel is not as angelic as he ought to be, because he gives fire to the humans when he wasn't told to, and that Crawly, questioning whether or not what he did was bad or good, is not necessarily the agent of evil HE ought to be. We are being set up here to question not only the agents of the Almighty and his Nemesis, but also the nature and plan of the Almighty Himself. This, as I have said, is the driving force of the novel, and I think this prologue sets us up very well for the events which are to follow.


Ahh...how could I forget the sword? I really like that conversation between the two of them. In a sense, it makes Aziraphale seem human. He thought he was doing good, and yet, he was afraid that what he thought was a good deed may end up being bad. It's a constant struggle that we, as humans, deal with as well. Perhaps this is why it was believed best that humans did not know the difference between good and evil. Then we wouldn't be second-guessing our actions. :D

I really am intrigued by Crawly and the fact that, as you said, he may not be the agent of evil he ought to be. I'm always one to try to see the good in everyone, and Crawly provides that little hope that there is good in everyone, that nobody is wholly evil, not even a servant of Evil.


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Mon Jun 07, 2010 12:25 pm
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Post Re: 1. In The Beginning
I just read Chapter 1. This is well done. I know I am missing some of the more subtle allusions but its okay; can always looks stuff up later. Crawly/Crowley is going to be fun to ger to know. I love his wise-crack, he has trouble comming up with bad stuff to do to humans, they are CREATIVE and can therefore think of and do much more bad stuff to each other than he can dream up.


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Mon Jun 07, 2010 12:39 pm
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Post Re: 1. In The Beginning
GaryG48 wrote:
I just read Chapter 1. This is well done. I know I am missing some of the more subtle allusions but its okay; can always looks stuff up later. Crawly/Crowley is going to be fun to ger to know. I love his wise-crack, he has trouble comming up with bad stuff to do to humans, they are CREATIVE and can therefore think of and do much more bad stuff to each other than he can dream up.


Exactly! And that's what I love about Gaiman and Pratchett here -- that they suggest that humans are their own worst enemies, and even the minions of the Evil One can't hurt them as badly as they could hurt themselves! It's hilarious and deadly serious and true at the exact same time, and that is one of the aspects of this book that I totally adore! :)

Seraphim wrote:
I really like that conversation between the two of them. In a sense, it makes Aziraphale seem human. He thought he was doing good, and yet, he was afraid that what he thought was a good deed may end up being bad. It's a constant struggle that we, as humans, deal with as well. Perhaps this is why it was believed best that humans did not know the difference between good and evil. Then we wouldn't be second-guessing our actions. :D


This is a very interesting insight, Seraphim. Every time the Garden of Eden story comes up in religious discussions, the question "Why would knowing good from evil be a bad thing?" always comes up, and this suggestion (the bolded sentences in the quote above) hits that nail right on the head. If all you know is God's plan, all you will follow is God's plan. But if you know that there is good (God) AND bad, then you start asking questions, and we all know that God hates it when people (and angels) question His plan. Very well done here. I'm so excited to keep going! :)

Seraphim wrote:
I really am intrigued by Crawly and the fact that, as you said, he may not be the agent of evil he ought to be. I'm always one to try to see the good in everyone, and Crawly provides that little hope that there is good in everyone, that nobody is wholly evil, not even a servant of Evil.


Yes. I'm glad you feel this way, too. You will continue to do so, and I like that you suggest there is good in everyone, even in a demon like Crawly/Crowley (Aziraphale will agree with you ;)).

I think we're getting off to a very good start! I can't wait to see what further insights will be revealed the more we read. Thanks for being so awesome, guys! Keep it coming! :up:



Mon Jun 07, 2010 2:53 pm
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Post Re: 1. In The Beginning
This opening chapter really does set the stage for much more to come. I love the comraderie betweek C and A. I particularly enjoyed the sense that neither of them seems to know what they're doing. There is a lot of foreshadowing here so it bears re-reading.



Fri Jun 11, 2010 7:38 pm
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Post Re: 1. In The Beginning
lindad_amato wrote:
This opening chapter really does set the stage for much more to come. I love the comraderie betweek C and A. I particularly enjoyed the sense that neither of them seems to know what they're doing. There is a lot of foreshadowing here so it bears re-reading.


Absolutely!! Glad you're having fun so far! :)



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Post Re: 1. In The Beginning
20 more pages to go in "Wind Up Bird", and then I'm all yours bleach! :)

I quickly read a portion of "Good Omens" and it did capture my attention. I'll re- read these pages and jump in.

It looks like a very happy discussion with all the smiley faces.



Tue Jun 15, 2010 6:50 am
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Post Re: 1. In The Beginning
:lol:

It's an awesome discussion so far, but I may be abusing the smilies a bit. It's so hard to convey emotion without them, though! But yes, this book and the discussion it is producing deserves all the smilies it wants! :D



Tue Jun 15, 2010 10:54 am
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