Book review: American Gods by Neil Gaiman

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American Gods by Neil Gaiman

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My review today is for American Gods by Neil Gaiman.

I had heard much about this book and author, most of it good. I saw this book had some dealings with the Norse Gods and that is something I am always interested in. So I decided to give this one a try even though it is not my usual style of reading. I don’t usually read books with the modern world as a back drop, I am usually reading to escape the modern world to be honest. This book had a nice twist on Old Gods and Mythology in America. It was also a social commentary on our society in general. Another subject I try to avoid like the plague but it worked in this book. Overall I thought this was a good book, not great, but not bad either.

The author’s writing and prose were spectacular. The characters are very well done, totally identifiable and memorable. My only real complaint is that the book could have been much shorter and had the same effect. There were some parts that went on forever it seemed and went nowhere fast. I tuned out for a couple of big chunks. I guess if it was not for the Norse influence on the story I might have tuned out all together. I liked many things in the book and I hated many things, again a good book, just really not for my taste.

As you know if you have read my reviews before I am not about long reviews with synopsis and spoilers. I just give my opinion on my experience with this book and you can take it from there. Now on to the next book.

3/5 STARS

This book is out NOW!

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About the book:

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American Gods by Neil Gaiman

  • Mass Market Paperback: 624 pages
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0380789035
  • ISBN-13: 978-0380789030

A storm is coming . . .

Locked behind bars for three years, Shadow did his time, quietly waiting for the magic day when he could return to Eagle Point, Indiana. A man no longer scared of what tomorrow might bring, all he wanted was to be with Laura, the wife he deeply loved, and start a new life.

But just days before his release, Laura and Shadow’s best friend are killed in an accident. With his life in pieces and nothing to keep him tethered, Shadow accepts a job from a beguiling stranger he meets on the way home, an enigmatic man who calls himself Mr. Wednesday. A trickster and rogue, Wednesday seems to know more about Shadow than Shadow does himself.

Life as Wednesday’s bodyguard, driver, and errand boy is far more interesting and dangerous than Shadow ever imagined—it is a job that takes him on a dark and strange road trip and introduces him to a host of eccentric characters whose fates are mysteriously intertwined with his own. Along the way Shadow will learn that the past never dies; that everyone, including his beloved Laura, harbors secrets; and that dreams, totems, legends, and myths are more real than we know. Ultimately, he will discover that beneath the placid surface of everyday life a storm is brewing—an epic war for the very soul of America—and that he is standing squarely in its path.

Relevant and prescient, American Gods has been lauded for its brilliant synthesis of “mystery, satire, sex, horror, and poetic prose” (Michael Dirda, Washington Post Book World) and as a modern phantasmagoria that “distills the essence of America” (Seattle Post-Intelligencer). It is, quite simply, an outstanding work of literary imagination that will endure for generations. A breathtaking tale of the war on Earth between old gods and new.

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About the author:

I make things up and write them down. Which takes us from comics (like SANDMAN) to novels (like ANANSI BOYS and AMERICAN GODS) to short stories (some are collected in SMOKE AND MIRRORS) and to occasionally movies (like Dave McKean’s MIRRORMASK or the NEVERWHERE TV series, or my own short film A SHORT FILM ABOUT JOHN BOLTON).

In my spare time I read and sleep and eat and try to keep the blog at:

http://www.neilgaiman.com

more or less up to date.

  10 comments for “Book review: American Gods by Neil Gaiman

  1. September 2, 2015 at 5:34 pm

    Social commentary. I hate those things. Guess my hesitation to read this one was correct. Glad you enjoyed it though.

    Liked by 1 person

    • September 2, 2015 at 5:39 pm

      Yes, my thoughts exactly! It was a good book. Not something I want to read all the time, but good.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. September 2, 2015 at 5:37 pm

    Neil Gaiman was hit and miss for me, but this book really struck a chord. I loved it! From there, I went into the Sandman series and was blown away. A great author and a huge advocate for the industry and libraries.

    Liked by 1 person

    • September 2, 2015 at 5:42 pm

      Glad it struck a chord with you. It was a good book, just not really my style. It was a nice change of pace.

      Like

  3. September 2, 2015 at 10:16 pm

    Yeah, I also felt this one could have been shorter. Afterwards I realized I had read the newer “extended” version. Made me wish I had read the original and couldn’t help but wonder if I may have it enjoyed it a bit more.

    Liked by 1 person

    • September 2, 2015 at 10:44 pm

      I read the original version and still thought it drawn out. I am glad I did not read the extended!

      Like

  4. September 2, 2015 at 11:24 pm

    The only book I’ve read by Gaiman is The Ocean at the End of the Lane, but I LOVED that story; ending left me utterly speechless. And it is very short. Like 200 pages?

    I’ve heard quite a bit of good things about this one too, and it will probably be the next book I pick up to read by him. The Old Gods in America twist interest me.

    Liked by 1 person

    • September 2, 2015 at 11:47 pm

      Yeah its a good book, and I like the concept. Just not my usual type of book. Then there is the being drawn out thing. But good overall.

      Like

  5. September 5, 2015 at 2:11 am

    I give this one excellent marks for a clever concept that is explored fully: specifically, that every nation in the world has the gods of its immigrants and inhabitants, even if they’re not worshiped anymore. Odin of America is not the Odin of Norway and he’s not the Odin of Germany (who is Wotan) which took me forever to realize is a historical joke on things like Jupiter/Zeus.

    However, the series is somewhat hurt by the fact I never get a real reason why I care about the New Gods (television, commerce, and so on) versus the old since they both seem like enormous asshats.

    Like

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