Some time ago I did a book vs. show post on American Gods. However, I only did a mini-review on the novel, which didn’t cover all that I have to say. So let’s look into the book more deeply!
Shadow Moon’s life sucks. He just got out of jail – because his wife died. As if that wasn’t enough, turns out she had been screwing his best friend.
Where could you possibly go from here? Well, an opportunity comes up for Shadow, he meets a weird old guy named Mr. Wednesday who claims to be the God Odin, in need for an assistant…
I know, I’m a bit late with reading this novel as it was originally published in 2001. But once I started reading, I just couldn’t put it down.
What Neil Gaiman created here is first of all a cleverly drafted storyline. The plot is mysterious and you won’t be able to see through any of the twist that lie ahead. Gaiman surprised me numerous times throughout this book and I couldn’t tell which way things would go in the end.
Another major plus point of American Gods are the awesome characters. Of course, our protagonist Shadow Moon is a relatable guy who gains depth with every page, but let’s be honest, he’s not what we came for. The book is titled American Gods for a reason. Gaiman included not only Gods but all kinds of people and creatures from legends and myths. You can tell, we’re talking about a broad range of topics, let me just give you a few examples: Odin, the old Norse God, Czernobog, the Slavic God of darkness, the Queen of Sheba, and countless more. Combining so many different things is tricky and can easily get confusing. I was impressed how well Gaiman had handled this and instead of feeling overwhelmed I was constantly longing for more. All the believes he mentions are fascinating and not only did I devour Neil Gaiman explanations, I spent a lot of time reading up on many of the myths he included.
Furthermore, it all comes together really well. We are talking about stories from various points in history, coming from vastly different cultures and believes. Gaiman set a tough task for himself when he tried to bring all this in one story – and he succeeded. I couldn’t believe that it all coming together would actually make sense, until the last page I was waiting for something that ruins the whole thing. However, Neil Gaiman proofed me wrong!
American Gods is a fascinating novel that will teach you a thing or two! It’s not the kind of book that’s for everyone, but I devoured it. A clever story that’s wonderfully written and will keep you on edge!
Did you read the book? Let me know in the comments what you think!
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5 thoughts on “Book Review: American Gods by Neil Gaiman”
I read this years ago but I don’t remember much. I need to re-read it. Great review!
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