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Shadow gets out of prison early when his wife is killed in a car crash. At a loss, he takes up with a mysterious character called Wednesday, who is much more than he appears. In fact, Wednesday is an old god, once known as Odin the All-father, who is roaming America rounding up his forgotten fellows in preparation for an epic battle against the upstart deities of the Internet, credit cards, television, and all that is wired. Shadow agrees to help Wednesday, and they whirl through a psycho-spiritual storm that becomes all too real in its manifestations. For instance, Shadow's dead wife Laura keeps showing up, and not just as a ghost--the difficulty of their continuing relationship is by turns grim and darkly funny, just like the rest of the book.
Armed only with some coin tricks and a sense of purpose, Shadow travels through, around, and underneath the visible surface of things, digging up all the powerful myths Americans brought with them in their journeys to this land as well as the ones that were already here. Shadow's road story is the heart of the novel, and it's here that Gaiman offers up the details that make this such a cinematic book--the distinctly American foods and diversions, the bizarre roadside attractions, the decrepit gods reduced to shell games and prostitution. "This is a bad land for Gods," says Shadow.
More than a tourist in America, but not a native, Neil Gaiman offers an outside-in and inside-out perspective on the soul and spirituality of the country--our obsessions with money and power, our jumbled religious heritage and its societal outcomes, and the millennial decisions we face about what's real and what's not. --Therese Littleton
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
The book held my interested and was well written. However, I suspect I will have to read it again at least once to get a grip on what is happening. Read morePublished 20 hours ago by RKent
I liked this so much more that Stardust. Borderline 4 or 5, but the tie breaker is the incredible originality. Read morePublished 20 hours ago by CRH
Such an amazing way to blend the old and the new, the religious and the profane, the arcane and the prosaic.Published 3 days ago by Domingos Soares Farinho
This novel poses interesting ideas and the main character of Shadow is very appealing, but as a story, it really drags at times. Read morePublished 3 days ago by DiL
just started reading this book and already regret buying it. i think i know where this book is going but the journey is just to uncomfortable. Read morePublished 4 days ago by Amazon Customer
Complex, riveting novel of the ancient gods living in the modern world. This is the book to remind people that he is not just a children's author, nor a genre writer. Read morePublished 4 days ago by Joe Da Rold
The author captures something of the heart of religion in America with this book. It is beautifully written and very engaging.Published 4 days ago by RedStarReviews