american godsI have a weird history with this book. I was utterly convinced that I’d read it before, but I remembered really bizarre parts of it, such as Shadow being cold in Lakeside and the secret of the klunker on the lake. I even watched season 1 of the new television show (enjoying it immensely), and had myself convinced that I was thinking of an entirely different book.

So I read it, and realized that I had read this before. I have no idea why my brain lost literally all the interesting things about it (a visit from Shadow, perhaps?), so I enjoyed this revisit. 

Since this book is much-beloved (though I will admit to not seeing the obsessive appeal) and has over 500k ratings on Goodreads, I’m not sure there’s much I can add to the conversation around it. Having just watched the television show, I can comment on how brilliantly cast it is. I was completely unable to disconnect Ian McShane from Mr Wednesday as I read, and I was genuinely startled by every physical description of Shadow that did not match that of Ricky Whittle. I do appreciate some of the updates that have been made from the book to the show, based on era of storytelling. In 2001, the image of Technical Boy as a black trenchcoat-wearing, acne-scarred, overweight “kid” was entirely accurate. Today, an obnoxious hipster with a vape is even more appropriate.

I can easily see myself re-reading this book for a third time (possibly after Shadow has removed all the interesting bits from my head again), but I’ll definitely see if I can find an annotated version of some sort. Because so much of what’s interesting about the gods in this novel are what Shadow doesn’t know, and that’s what I want to find out.

Rating: 4 (out of 5) stars. Cross-posted to Amazon and Goodreads.

Currently reading: The Resurrection Pact (Winston Casey Chronicles #1) by Jay Smith

Currently writing: 28,753/30k words

3 thoughts on “Review: American Gods by Neil Gaiman

  1. The only bad thing about it that I can think of is that there’s not more of Shadow’s story from the aftermath. 😀

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