I originally read the book about 5 years ago a d enjoyed it. This production was awesome. Additional text and the full cast of voices made it most enjoyable.
I like the overall storyline. I'm a big fan of Gaiman's writing. I like the characters and all of the "back stories" on the migration of different cultures to America.
Folks, for audiobooks it's not just about the writer, it's also about the narrator...
I was apprehensive in purchasing this audiobook since I wasn't sure if I would like a Full Cast Production. To date, I have listed to several books, all either narrated by one or in one case two narrators. Was I glad I downloaded this version of "American Gods." The main narrator, Dennis Boutsikaris, is absolutely amazing. He has great voice inflection at just the right time and simply made the story better than it would have been if I had read it myself. That much I am sure. The other narrators were excellent as well - and even my favorite, Oliver Wyman - has a credit to boot!
As far as the story is concerned, it is a mystery, sci-fi, crime novel all rolled into one. And although I think Gaiman does a decent job of tying it all together, looking back it seems just a little disjointed. Nonetheless, it was a incredible attempt of pulling disparate stories and ideas together in one monumental book. "American Gods," I can see why some people hated it and others loved it. I'm certainly in the love it category.
Lifelong voracious reader/listener. British humor: Austen, EF Benson, Wodehouse, Gaiman, Holt, Pratchett. Courtroom crime and chick lit.
This wasn't just a book, it was a week-long experience. The full cast turned an already fantastic novel into a fantastic production. I usually think writers prefer the written page, but I actually think audio is a better medium for this work, and I think Gaiman might agree.
Not only was 'American Gods' the first Neil Gaiman book I've listened to, but this is my first review. This is the book that finally motivated me to write a review.
Quite honestly, the overall plot/premise of this book is not one that would generally appeal to me. I am more a fan of (space-based) sci-fi, than fantasy (the genre I think this story most arguably falls into). However, there is no denying that Neil Gaiman is a master storyteller. For my next book, I will seek a different author to change things up, but I already have other Gaiman books in my wish list and plan to return to the world of his imagination soon.
As to 'American Gods,' well there is very little negative I can say about it. The story was interesting and unique, but as I stated above not normally one that would compel me to pick up a book. However, I wanted to explore Gaiman beyond the silver screen versions of his books and for whatever reason I settled on 'American Gods.' I am glad I did.
Gaiman has a fantastic way with prose that draws you into the story. You are not just reading a story, but rather you can actually see the characters, their gestures, and subtle nuances that make them human (or in this case, Gods with very human foibles). So while the plot (for me) was only mildly compelling, I must admit to being completely drawn into the story and vivid characters along the way. For that, I would very much recommend this book.
Of course, due credit must be given to the production value. The 10th Anniversary Edition of this novel was performed by a full cast, and no doubt that added to the enjoyment factor and richness of the characters.Gaiman himself takes a turn at reading certain sections of the book which fall outside of the primary story arc, and it very much works.
If I have any criticism at all, it might be that certain portions of the book seemed unnecessary or too drawn out. Ironically those may be the very same portions of the book that were added back in for the 10th Anniversary Edition. As a foreword to the book, Gaiman explains that the original release of the novel was shortened at the request of his publisher, and that much of that extra text was added back in for the anniversary re-release. So I suspect that perhaps much of those sections I felt unnecessary may have been the same sections cut for the original release. I should like to perhaps read the original someday to see how it compares. Still, I am glad to have heard the novel in the way the author originally intended, and I would still recommend this version.
All in all, if you are looking for good old-fashioned storytelling brought to life by a great cast of voice actors, you would be hard pressed to find a better example.
I'm often looking to expand my experiences. One way I do that is by asking others what they're reading. If the conversation gets going, I ask them about the most intriguing book they've read, a book they'd read again, etc.
The performance is, indeed, excellent. I try to ration out the "5" rating. This book deserves a 5, and while the performance was excellent, the story is OUTSTANDING.
What category is this book? A MYSTERY? Is it SCI-FI? How about FANTASY? This book qualifies for all of those genres, but none of them come close to describing this book, or even putting it in a category.
You cheer for the main character. You are instantly intrigued by each character, no matter when they're introduced, how long they're active, etc. The segue to other stories make you scratch your head, but enhanced the experience of the book, and this book IS AN EXPERIENCE!!
This is my first Neil Gaiman book and definitely not my last. The dialogue is satisfyingly entertaining. I haven't listened to dialogue this witty and good in quite a while. In my opinion that plot wasn't all that spectacular, but that doesn't matter as what this book is truly about is Shadow and his interactions with the old and new world and here it doesn't disappoint. The production of the Narration is great. A truly wonderful and entertaining experience. WOW.
I was definitely not about to waste credits on this book -- a main character named "Shadow"? Can it get any more terrible community college creative writing class?
When going on a road trip, my friend lent me the original version. It takes about 20 minutes to pick up, but then, BOOM, you will be riveted. If you liked mythology as a kid, if you like a mystery and a little whimsy, you'll enjoy it.
I listened to the 10th anniversary version while on tour of the plains states and I really loved having all of the actors to voice different characters. Turned it into almost a movie-like experience.
I highly recommend this book, listen before HBO series comes out!
It's definitely in my top 10 audio books so far.
American Gods made me feel like I only got a glimpse of a moment of some crazy stuff. Felt trippy, like a hallucination, and oddly soothing at the same time. Shadow, the main character, felt like someone I know and hope to bump into in the future. Shadow if he was real would be someone you'd want around when you're feeling overwhelmed or anxious. His presence would cover you with a thick blanket of reassurance that things aren't all that bad. Maybe that things will be... not better, but almost like things could be worse than in this moment and a numbness takes you over. Written so well, for me anyway, that his stoic demeanor and his perception of the moment rubs off a bit.
Audiobook Narrator of Hurricane Song, produced by Brilliance Audio.
Yes, the outstanding performance of full cast, the epic journey of Shadow, the unique characters, the historical inserts.
Shadow because he shows so many redemptive qualities and comes full circle!!!
Ron McLarty was one of my favorite narrators, before he started doing all the David Baldacci stuff and I like some of Richard Ferrone's stuff. Ron McLarty as Wednesday (Oden) and Richard Ferrrone as Mr. World (Loki) are phenomenal, they're portrayal of the characters give the book an expansive depth.
It touched me deeply especially the undying love Shadow had for his wife.
The full cast production format was great, especially given the number of characters. I wish more audiobooks used this format, because it makes for a very rich listening experience.