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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 --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.--This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.
The initial premise is really interesting and the story has a good pacing to it. The plot takes an odd turn about 3/4ths of the way through and it kind of lost me after that point.Published 6 hours ago by Fred Benson
I've read a few of Gaiman's novels. This one is by far the best he's written. Gaiman did his research well and makes the story surprisingly believable (in that SyFy/fantasy way). Read morePublished 11 hours ago by Kathleen A. Dickert
Still reading it, but it's a page turner! Fascinating, mysterious, bizarre, and fun.Published 3 days ago by The Verge
This is a great light read and fun for those wanting sampling of folklore from beyond the mainstream.
Thanks Neil. Sandman still my fav of all your works.
All in all I enjoyed reading American Gods. I'm glad I read it and would probably recommend it to friends. Read morePublished 4 days ago by zoiberg
I'm a fan of Coraline, Neverwhere, The Graveyard Book, Ocean at the End of the Lane. American Gods is not my cup of tea. Too violent, too obscene. Read morePublished 4 days ago by Amazon Customer
This was my first Neil Gaiman experience, apart from the movie Coraline. I enjoyed the stoytelling since mythology has always been a love of mine. I definitely recommend.Published 5 days ago by Sheryl B