Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Death, The Devil and The Goldfish by Andrew Buckley

Death, the Devil, and the Goldfish
Genre: Humor, Fantasy
Rating: 4 stars

I've had a hard time thinking of what to rate this and how to review it. I want to almost work backwards because it might make more sense that way...

I had a hard time picking out 1 main character, but I guess it'd be Nigel, the police officer. Then there's Death (as in the Grim Reaper). And a penguin who got put into the body of a millionaire. And a scientist Celina who invented robotic elves. And of course there's The Devil and the Goldfish. See what I mean about hard to review?

Ok, so here's the summary: Nigel, the police officer, is investigating why no one is dying in London and why a cat suddenly has turned into the devil. He also has a gambling problem and is harassed by two stupid goons. The Devil, on a week-long jaunt to earth ok'd by God, got "accidentally" (always read the fine print) put into the body of a cat. He, as the cat, convinced Death to quit. Hence the no one dying. The penguin knew he was meant for bigger things and then *bam* he ends up a man and washes up on the same island where Death is vacationing. Back in London, Celina is locked in the lunch room kitchen hiding from the robotic elves that have taken over due to a programming glitch (there's the Devil at it again). And the goldfish? Well, he's prophetic. He receives messages and flings them out to the universe hoping that they reach the appropriate person. And since he's a goldfish he has about a 10 second attention span, he constantly wonders why there's a castle in his bowl. So, the motley team of Nigel, the penguin, Death and Celina have to try and stop the Devil and his evil mechanical elves from completing his dastardly plan.

I had a hard time getting into the book because I was so confused. It reads similar to a Douglas Adams book - very witty with dry British humor. I had to get adjusted to it. And the plot jumps from person to person, so I had to figure out what each story had to do with the next. It does come together, it does, I just had to figure out how. Once it did, it was funny and I enjoyed the characters. It was fun. And silly. And a bit ridiculous, but it's supposed to be. It's set up with a bit of a cliff-hanger at the end, so I'm assuming that there will be a sequel, which I'll have to read since by the end I cared about the characters. And that's the point, right? To care about the characters.

I recommend this for fans of The Hitchhiker's Guider To The Galaxy, people who enjoy British humor, or anyone who read this and just has to find out HOW all these things came together.


  1. This book sounds insane, but now you've got me all curious and wanting to dive into all the quirkiness. I can see why writing this review would be a bit challenging:)

    1. If you pay attention to who the main characters are and you keep in mind the type of humor it is, it will be easier for you to read than it was for me. But yeah, it's insane. But clearly I'm ok with insanity. :)