While astoundingly long compared to his other works, it is none the less excellently crafted and most certainly written by Neil Gaiman. I read a little tid-bit of his American Gods idea in an anthology, and hadn't realize it was based off a genuine book. I bought it, because the idea of an American God was sort of interesting, and I've always liked the author. The story begings with our main character- but not quite protagonist, Shadow, in prison and days away from being released from an assualt and battery charge, and while he does get released it's under the most awful of circumstances, and things quickly deteriorate from there. One of those constant-traveling-no-setting type of books, we are taken to Kansas, to the center of things, and Little Egypt, and Wisconsin, and Georgia, and we travel along the mid-west with Mr. Wednesday (for that is his day and therefore his name), and met Chernobog (the Dark Half), and Mr. Nancy (with tiger balls), and Easter (The Holiday but not a Christian god), we become entangled in a Murder Mystery and Daring Quest for the Original American Gods, the Wakinyan, the Thunderbirds. There is a line in the book that has stuck with me through out the novel, the entire rollicking and gothic and sad and hysterical adventure, "America is a land of dreams and fire, and an infertile place for Gods."
He saw dead people. Odd Thomas is an agreeable young man with a free spirited girlfriend he's completely in love with. He also sees dead people, and helps catch criminals on the side when he's not frying food at the town's diner. Hardly groundbreaking, but I have a thing for the paranormal and it sounded interesting enough, and really, the first few chapters were excellent. But, then it kind of fell into a predictable rhythm. I have a friend that's in love with Dean Koontz, so I thought I would try 'im as well, but I was sorely disappointed. I found the prose to be formula and the descriptions, while thick (which I appreciate), very cliched (which I didn't). Koontz sort of got soppy too, which I never like. (Waiting until marriage to have sex with his girlfriend, constantly professing undying love, parents are assholes and one dimensional, martyr, martyr, bleh) Characters were black and white, and Koontz spent a good three minutes trying to convince me why the character was the way they were. Why not just give us a biography and let the readers decide for ourselves? I mean, I bought the book, I got nothing but time-... eh. I was sad. The narrator was good for the book, but not my favorite. All in all, if you want thrills and paranormal quirks and generic but smooth prose, go get a Stephen King novel. Koontz really wasn't worth my time.
Keep in Mind: Literary tastes include Steinbeck, Steig Larsson, John Hart, Stephen King
I've listened to the rest of the series, and I rather like them. Which is surprising, because when you look at the covers and you read the descriptions, they seem a little corny and quite possibly stupid. But they're not. The books are no Harry Potter Series (Numerous puns exist in the book though,) and they're not anything like Steig Larsson, but enjoyable none the less. Nothing heavy, but if you're listening while running (as I do,) it'll hook you into extending your workout longer than you planned. My only complaint is that Mr. Holdbrook-Smith, though he's very talented with all the other accents, has an awful time with the American accent. Some advice: We Americans do not have colds, and people with a Midwestern accent don't nearly leave out as many 't's and 'r's as you think. At first, I couldn't figure out what he was doing- until he told me about the nationality of the particular character. But that is the only complaint I have. A good book, well worth the member price.
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