This is a good introductory book to Neil Gaiman that contains a Full Cast helping to bring all the characters to life. The book begins with Shadow being released from prison and he soon meets a man named Mr. Wednesday who offers him a job as his bodyguard. Mr. Wednesday is more then he appears as Shadow finds out he is living in a world where all the old gods and even new ones exists. So join Shadow as he rediscovers the world he thought he knew.
American Gods has won many awards including two of the biggest:
Hugo and Nebula
Neil Gaiman has also started writing the sequel to American Gods and it is rumored to focus on the New Gods.
I got through a few chapters and its the worst writing ive seen... and, boring as hell. I hope to return it for another book because this is just too brutal to even try to listen too. Whyyyyyy was it given such a high rating??? im shocked!~
It took me nearly 2 months to make my way through this book and I'm still trying to decide if it was worth the effort. In the Introduction of the book, Gaiman says that he wanted it to be "big and odd and meandering." It certainly is that.
I did find the premise of the book to be original. When people from all over the world came to American from other countries, they brought their gods with them. Now hundreds and even thousands of years later, these gods are in danger of dying out and being replaced by the newer gods of media, technology, and the like. A battle is brewing.
Shadow, recently released from prison, is offered a job by the mysterious Mr Wednesday to be his driver as he amasses the older gods for the coming fight. As Shadow and Wednesday make their way through the mid-American landscape, Gaiman introduces a host of characters and places with only a smattering of plot to tie them all together. Here and there he includes more traditional stories and breaks in every now and then with a Coming to America segment that detail how many of the different gods were brought to this country. I found these the most interesting.
As much as I liked the premise, I kept waiting for something to happen. When the big climax of the book did happen, ironically it seemed anti-climatic. We went through all those pages for this, I thought?
I listened to this book via Audible. It is one of the first books I've listened to that had a full cast recording. I found that really disconcerting at first, not just because it was strange to hear all those different voices, but because the dialogue was so short, the voices seemed contrived. Later though, as I became used to it, I did think the voices helped me keep track of who was whom in the large cast of characters.
Overall, an interesting read/listen, but not my favorite.
Neil Gaiman's whimsical plot, rich narrative, and exquisite character development make what would otherwise be a pedestrian tale into a keeper. Gaiman says that readers tend to like the book or hate it, and I can see why. I really disliked the premise and the story to be quite honest, but I really liked Gaiman's writing style.
Philosophically the story is interesting - American culture contains a wonderful, bewildering patois of colliding cultural traditions, and at the same time the leading creator of culture in the world. Gaiman's story elucidates this cultural dialectic through a metaphor of a supernatural struggle between the many old gods brought to America in the consciousness of its immigrants and the new gods who had their beginning here.
I'm not sure I would want to change this story. Gaiman says in his author's foreword that the genre of the story is hard to place, and I agree. I'd say it belongs somewhere between fantasy and horror, neither of which genres are my ordinary cup of tea, but I enjoyed the richness and rhythm of his prose and the development of the characters.
The narrators are cast beautifully - their voice characterizations help to flesh out the already well developed characters.
This book stands on its own - a follow up isn't needed, nor do I think it would be even possible. That said, I could easily envision a podcasted panel discussion of the philosophical and cultural metaphors in American Gods and how they relate to actual cultural dynamics.
The story seemed to bounce around too much. No real action takes place and the main character comes across as pretty stupid. I did not care for the ending, which seemed to not really tie things up and left me feeling that the slow burn of this book was not worth it. This book is rated very high and I came into it pretty excited based on some good reviews, so maybe it's just not for me.
Some feeling that the tale was going somewhere, be it good or bad. Something which would get the listener invested in the characters.
A Feast for Crows
Cannot comment on this
After investing many listening hours, the book proved so boring to me that I never finished it, which is extremely unusual for me.
I'm loving audio books more each day-being able to walk the dog, do the dishes or keep an eye on grandkids in the pool-all while listening to a book is great. My favorite genres are mystery/romance, some paranormal and lots of Science Fiction.
Gaiman is one of those authors for who I simply buy the hardbound when it comes out and I read and re-read these over the years. I was thrilled to find this revised production version of it on Audible.com. I may be prejudiced but I found this audio book immaculately performed and amongst the top of the books I've listened to.
I really enjoyed the variety of narrators-with a novel this involved, a multi cast interpretation is the only way to do it justice.Yes, it's long and quite complex, especially if you've not read it previously but it's well worth the time and any effort. If you're a fan of fantasy fiction, American gods should fascinate you.
A caveat: It may take a while to get into..because it is long and as a bit convoluted, you might not be grabbed in the first chapter..Gaiman develops his novels slowly-they creep up on you. I hope readers who are unfamiliar with his work don't give up right away..this book is a synopsis of past gods and goddesses from our ancestors and their plight in the world of technology.
For me, this is a book thats worth reading, and re reading again-I know I'll be listening again in a couple of years.
Things I enjoy good conversation, GoodPeople good books ( audible books ) beautiful women the shrine, Shriners Hospital for Children
Did not like this one. My brother selected it for me and i thought it would be a lot better than it is
I hope his other works are better
The only good thing about this confusing stream of consciousness was the voice of Shadow. Probably because he sounds just like Vin Diesel.
This would be a decent book if edited and cut in half. It is very tiresome and tedious in spots. While the "voices" and performance are top-notch, the story itself waxes and wanes between engaging and boringly tedious. Perhaps one of the worst aspects is that none of the characters are particularly likeable, and so the reader doesn't care a whole lot what happens to them. The treatment of women by Wednesday is especially vulgar and distasteful as he is an old coot who essentially mesmerizes young girls into one-night stands. The book is really just way too long for its content.