Monday 15 September 2014

Book Review: American Gods by Neil Gaiman

Title: American Gods
Author: Neil Gaiman
Harper Collins
Publication Date: 2009 (2001)
Pages: 624
Format: E-Book - EPUB
Genre: Fiction / Mythology
Source: Bought Copy
Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

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.
(Goodreads Synopsis)

To be honest, I had expected to like American Gods more than I did. Not that I didn't enjoy it, it was just that I had heard so many great things about it, and it involved my love of mythology and folklore, and I think maybe my expectations were therefore set too high.

That said, I enjoyed the way Gaiman interconnected the different world mythologies, and I enjoyed the ending. I guessed well in advance who Mr World was, but the fun wait for the reveal was nearly as good as not knowing who it would be.

I read this knowing they are in the process of making a TV series and, as I read, I thought many films would work well in a visual medium, so perhaps I will appreciate it more on the screen.

Another possible influence on my review is the fact I am currently writing my own book based in mythology. My connection to my own interpretation of the stories may well have clouded my ability to appreciate this one fully. Given that, I may come back and read this again in the future to see if I get more out of it then. For now, it is still 3.5 - 4 stars out of 5.

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