Review: American Gods – Neil Gaiman

american-gods neil gaiman cover

SYNOPSIS: Days before his release from prison, Shadow’s wife, Laura, dies in a mysterious car crash. Numbly, he makes his way back home. On the plane, he encounters the enigmatic Mr Wednesday, who claims to be a refugee from a distant war, a former god and the king of America.

Together they embark on a profoundly strange journey across the heart of the USA, whilst all around them a storm of preternatural and epic proportions threatens to break.

Scary, gripping and deeply unsettling, AMERICAN GODS takes a long, hard look into the soul of America. You’ll be surprised by what and who it finds there… – via Goodreads

GRADE 8So Josh of JJames Reviews recommended that I read this (last year, if I am being honest here). I know it has taken me a damn long time to get to it, but I will usually look into the recommendations I get from my readers. I was not sure what this book was about, and I had no intention of finding out any other way than reading it – no synopsis, nothing. I was pleasantly surprised. Personally, I have never read any of Gaiman’s work, though I have a friend who absolutely adores his work, and I think that this was a great place to start. I am always fascinated by mythology as well as old gods. This book was good. Initially it started up, with Shadow and in prison, and progressed to meeting Wednesday, and I was fascinated by Odin. Truly, he was a pretty darn interesting character. The book breezes by pretty quickly, which I enjoyed, but it never felt like a brainless read – definitely not a light one. It was stimulating. Actually, it got you thinking quite a bit. I was not a particularly large fan of how gods were introduced and most were given a little more fleshing out than some, but the new gods, against who this entire war was being waged, had no names or descriptions or anything really. I suppose you sort of had to make your own conclusions about it. I enjoyed the imagery that was portrayed, it was a pretty cool journey to undertake with Shadow, and later Wednesday when he joined up. It offered another look into how the gods have shifted and changed over the centuries, and how fads come and go all the time nowadays. Nothing is certain, the world is a different place, people are different creatures. This was definitely something very fresh and different for me to read, and the way the world was constructed by Gaiman was fascinating and impressive and it draws you in. I thoroughly enjoyed the read, though this is not the easiest book to recommend. If you are looking for a light read, this is certainly not the one for you. If you are interested in mythology and old gods, this might be a novel little read for you, and I would highly recommend you check it out.

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26 thoughts on “Review: American Gods – Neil Gaiman

  1. Nish says:

    I’ve heard this book is not in his usual style, which is why I haven’t picked it up. Different style or not, I should give it a try. It sounds pretty interesting.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. jjames36 says:

    Hey, Zoe. Figured since I recommended it, I ought to stop by!

    I’m glad you liked this. And I agree with basically everything you said. It is so rapidly paced that many of the gods are introduce so quickly we never get the chance to know them. This is especially true of the new gods. Yet, Odin and Shadow are written so well that it still manages to be a really good book.

    Also agreed that this is not a light read, though – truthfully – that’s part of the reason I like it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Zoë says:

      If ever there was a good reason 😉

      They were definitely amazing characters, and Gaiman managed to sell the whole book on them, even though the others were so rapidly glanced over.

      It was really magical, the book transported me to a whole different feel and world – like only a good book can!

      Thank you so much for the recommendation, I am so happy I finally got to it. It is nice to break the mould of easy reads 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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