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American Gods | [Neil Gaiman]

American Gods

For the three years Shadow spent in prison, all he wanted was to get back to the loving arms of his wife and stay out of trouble for the rest of his life. But days before his release, he learns that his wife has been killed in an accident, and his world becomes a colder place.
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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential: In an era before both iPod and printing press, people told tales of the gods around the firepit. With American Gods, master storyteller Gaiman taps that mythic vein for a genre-defying modern-day tale of gods, both ancient and new, warring under our very noses. Giving voice to Gaiman's words, George Guidall brings out both the energy and emotion of this surprisingly human tale. His characterization of the much-more-than-a-conman Mr. Wednesday is masterful. —Ed Walloga

Publisher's Summary

For the three years Shadow spent in prison, all he wanted was to get back to the loving arms of his wife and stay out of trouble for the rest of his life. But days before his release, he learns that his wife has been killed in an accident, and his world becomes a colder place.

On the plane ride home to the funeral, Shadow meets a man who calls himself Mr. Wednesday, a self-declared grifter, who offers Shadow a job. Shadow, a man with nothing to lose, accepts. But he soon learns that his role in Wednesday's schemes will be far more dangerous than he could have ever imagined.

American Gods is a dark and kaleidoscopic journey deep into myth and across an America at once eerily familiar and utterly alien. Magnificently told, American Gods is a work of literary magic that will haunt the listener long after it has been heard.

©2001 Neil Gaiman; (P)Recorded Books, Inc.; ©2001 HarperCollinsPublishers Inc.

What the Critics Say

  • Hugo Award Winner, Best Novel, 2002
  • Nebula Award Winner, Best Novel, 2002

"Brilliant dialogue and profound insights into American consciousness show Gaiman to be a visionary and a master wordsmith." (AudioFile)
"Neil Gaiman enters Stephen King territory...with American Gods." (New York Post)
"A crackerjack suspense yarn...juicily original...Wagnerian noir." (Salon.com)
"By turns thoughtful, hilarious, disturbing, uplifting, horrifying and enjoyable, and sometimes all at once." (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (5848 )
5 star
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4.1 (2704 )
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Story
4.4 (2682 )
5 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    PJ in RC 09-12-06
    PJ in RC 09-12-06 Listener Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "How boring can you stand."

    This story just goes nowhere, and drags on and on. Obviously this is a story that you love or hate.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Reece Provo, UT, USA 10-06-08
    Reece Provo, UT, USA 10-06-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    18
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "Disappointing"

    This is the third of Geiman's books I've read/listened to and I was extremely disappointed. The story is slow and interrupted by revolting interludes. It definitely had potential, but it just drags on and on without really getting anywhere. Also, I did not appreciate the explicit sex scenes, and there are plenty of them. NOT his best work, not by a long shot

    4 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Paul 03-13-08
    Paul 03-13-08 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    19
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    81
    10
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "This F-N book"

    I have listened to 3 other Neil books Anansi Boys, Neverwhere and Stardust, All awesome! This book however is nothing but "F@#$ this", "F@#$ that" "I will F-N Kill you". The the F word is used way to often. I think that if you took the F word out of just the first hour of the book it would have only played for 30 min!! Way to much.. I don't mind books that use the F word but this book seems to use it for every 3rd word. Way to F-N much! Skip this book, Neil has way to many really good books.

    10 of 27 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jacob S Junkin 03-22-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    113
    8
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "Trying to Like it..."

    Can't seem to really like any of the characters...story is OK tho...

    2 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeff Middleburg, FL, United States 10-21-07
    Jeff Middleburg, FL, United States 10-21-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    9
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    377
    6
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    1
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    Overall
    "Wonderful"

    I loved this book. A great listen. One of the many books I've listened to that I WILL listen to again. The story just sucks you in and you just want to sit in your car and listen. Neil Gaiman is great story teller.

    2 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    pashopper 02-02-09
    pashopper 02-02-09 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    198
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    269
    42
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    9
    2
    Overall
    "Interesting, but should have a warning"

    I enjoy Gaiman's unique stories, but this one was spoiled a bit for me by the graphic sex scenes which show up continually throughout the book. More than graphic, some of them are also made of disturbing and bizzare imagery. I did finish the book to find out the ending because otherwise it is interesting - but I deleted it from my harddrive and don't intend to listen a second time. I'm not sure the first time was worth it.

    6 of 17 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carol Kent, WA, USA 05-16-05
    Carol Kent, WA, USA 05-16-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    18
    4
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    0
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    Overall
    "Bored to tears"

    I got this book based on the previous reviews. I made it through about three hours and I was ready to scream I was so bored. I think this one needs to have an abridged version.

    4 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Isaak 03-05-13
    Isaak 03-05-13 Member Since 2014
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    33
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Yes, and..."
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    The performance is good, but I wish we could travel through the story in a more effective manner.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    predictable....


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kenneth Okotoks, AB, Canada 02-28-12
    Kenneth Okotoks, AB, Canada 02-28-12 Member Since 2002
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    26
    3
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    0
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    "Absolutely Worst"
    Would you try another book from Neil Gaiman and/or George Guidall?

    Absolutely Not


    What could Neil Gaiman have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Join the rest of us in the real world


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    Only thing that got me half way through the first third of this audio


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from American Gods?

    The supernatural stuff


    Any additional comments?

    I'm sorry. I am not someone who trashes the efforts of other but this audio book, in 12 years of being a member of Audible.com, was the worst. I wasted a credit and my time trying to make my way through this book and only got through one third of it.

    I should add that I am not a supernatural fan and some blame for my downloading this book must lie with the editor and some with me.

    Do I have to google every book I download? I should be able to trust the editor's notes, no?

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jen 12-06-11
    Jen 12-06-11 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
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    5
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    "BORING!!! Not for me"
    What would have made American Gods better?

    I'll preface with the statement that I have never read/listened to Neil Gaiman's work before. This was very long, and painful to finish (be advised this is 20 hours long). The storyline never takes off, and the much-anticipated god-war is a short snipet. I dreaded listening to this on the way to and home from work (I need to finish books I start). Long, drawn-out unnecessary details-the space could have been better used for moving the story along. The idea is good, I enjoyed the sprinkling of ancient gods-but the god characters were not described in detail for the most part (and in excessive stories for others). I never connected with the major characters, which probably influenced my distaste for the book. Some love this book, others (like me) do not (look this book up on Amazon, look at the 1-star ratings and I pretty much agree with these reviewers-especially it being boring and drawn out).


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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