I really love Neil Gaiman. I have read most of his books and after finishing American Gods I only wish there were more to read. As usual Neil Gaiman did a wonderful job of creating likable, realistic characters in a not so likely situation. American Gods opens with Shadow, the leading man, in jail. He has served three years and is about to be paroled. He is looking forward to going back to his wife and living a quiet life. It is not so simple though. Shadow feels a storm coming. Right before he leaves his quiet plans are turned upside down when he finds out that his wife has died in a car crash. On his plane ride to her funeral he meets Mr. Wednesday, a mysterious man with a proposition that will change his life.
Throughout the book you go on an adventure with Shadow into an America that most people don't think about. It is the world where gods are everywhere. Gods who were brought to America and then forgotten, along with new Gods, like Media and Technology, who have replaced them. What I love about this is the way that Gaiman has of making old ideas, like gods and dreams, and makes them new.
The gods who are now stuck in America spend their time trying to be worshiped in any way they can. Mr. Wednesday seems to be the ring leader of all the old gods. He feels a storm coming and he enlists Shadow to be a body guard of sorts as he goes around the country convincing the old gods to join him in a war against the new gods of America. While I found myself caring for Shadow and his well being, he is not perfect. None of the characters are and that is part of what I love about the way Gaiman creates characters. I found myself even having some sympathy for the "bad guys" of the novel. Gaiman always seems to take his main characters on a journey, both physically and emotionally. And like in all of his books the ending is bitter sweet. I am afraid to give away too much more, but I would definitely recommend this book(and all of his others) to anyone.
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