Weekly Geeks (2 and 3)

I have been falling behind in the Weekly Geeking, so I’m going to post on both last weeks and this weeks.  I started a post for last week’s book cover question, but could not figure out which book I wanted to talk about.  So, now, I’ve decided just to post on American Gods, the book I finished most recently.  Here are the covers I found:


This is the cover for the copy I read.  I like the incorporation of the road and the storm.  It doesn’t give too much indication about the story, but I feel like the image of the road is so “american” it works.american_gods

I like this cover too, but I’m not sure whose house it’s supposed to be.  Maybe it’s the funeral home?  I would have liked to see a cover with one of the roadside attractions on it with the incorporation of the storm that’s making its way onto all the covers.  Also a nice quote from Michael Chabon on it.  This cover is prettier, but I still want to know whose house that’s supposed to be!  It always bothers me when the cover doesn’t really have anything to do with the story.

american_gods2This cover is so different from all of the other ones, but I love it.  It’s definitely my favorite.  It has a different mood than the other covers, but the image is much more interesting.  And the buffalo man has such a huge role, even if he isn’t necessarily the first character or symbol we think of.  I also like the incorporation of the flag.  I like this cover because it is so different and would definitely catch my eye in a bookstore.  I think this one is used for the foreign language editions, but I might be off on that.


I think this cover is really pretty.   And it’s the “author’s preferred text.”  I’m not sure what that means.  I wonder if my version was different than this one.  This is the UK cover and it is done in a similar style to the Good Omens covers.  Anything endorsed by Philip Pullman is something I’d pick up.  I like the style of this cover and the ambiguity of the picture on the front.  It’s an image that can be applied so many different ways in the story.  The ambiguity here doesn’t annoy me as much as it does with the other cover and the house.  I’m not sure why, that might be a little irrational ;).


I really like the idea of this cover, but not the actual cover.  I like the incorporation of the storm and the incorporation of the kind of dying americana that came up in the book a lot.  But there are so many better pictures of that kind of thing that they could have used.  I’m not sure why they chose a picture so washed out for this cover.  It’s my least favorite, but I think they could have done it well.

As for this weeks WG:

For this week’s edition of Weekly Geeks, we’re going to take a closer look at character names. What are some of your favorite character names?

Look up a favorite character’s name. What does their name mean? Do you think the meaning fits the character? Why or why not?

If you’d like, look up your own name as well and share the meaning.

I decided to do the name Oscar, for Oscar Wao, and because it’s the name of my crazy cat, though we like to spell it with a k, like Oskar.

From this website, Oscar means:

Oscar is a Scandinavian name derived from the Old English os “god” and gar “spear”.
It is also an Irish mythological name: Oscar was the name of Oisin’s son and the grandson of the hero Fionn mac Cumhail. It almost certainly means “lover of deer” or “beloved of deer”, derived from Gaelic os “deer” combined cara “lover”.

This fits Oscar Wao so well!  I’m not sure if Junot Díaz really thought about it at all, but it seems to me that both meanings of the names fit the character of Oscar.  First, from the Old English for God Spear.  That’s interesting, considering Oscar’s firm belief in the fukú and also his preoccupation with you-know-what.   As for the Gaelic meaning, “lover of deer” also works, I think, with Oscar’s obsession over girls.  Deer always make me think of women, rather than men, despite it being a more gender-neutral word.  I always immediately think of doe, rather than buck.  And Oscar really loved the ladies, even if he didn’t always score.

So, do any of those meanings fit my cat?  Not really, unless you count her claws as spears.


4 thoughts on “Weekly Geeks (2 and 3)

  1. LOL! Very good analysis! My dog is named Oscar and I learned a lot here. I don’t think the defn fits, oh well.

    I haven’t read the Gaiman book (yet); not knowing anything, I would pick the second cover.

  2. Oskar is also the name of the little dude from Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. Nice.

    As for Oskar the cat. Spear of God? HAHAHA… hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. If Oskar is the spear of God then Black Dog must be the shit stick of God. Also, if Oskar is a lover of deer then deer must really mean all of my food because that is all she loves. Except for her love of hating me and making my life miserable.

    Nice post! : )

  3. I love that Buffalo Man cover too. BUT, for people who haven’t read the book or Gaiman before, it might be a little alienating, you know? Kinda creepy? lol I own the first version, and I’m a fan of that iconic highway. Love roadtrips.

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