Review – American Gods by Neil Gaiman

american_gods1 “People believe, thought Shadow.  It’s what people do.   They believe.  And then they will not take responsibility for their beliefs; they conjure things, and do not trust the conjurations.   People populate the darkness; with gods, with electrons, with tales.  People imagine, and people believe: and it is that belief, that rock-solid belief, that  makes things happen.”

– page 418

I am sure most of you have read this.  If not I’ll give the briefest of breif summaries:

Shadow is about to be released from prison when he learns that his wife has been killed in a car accident.  They let him out a few days early and on his way to the funeral, he meets the mysterious Mr. Wednesday who offers him a job.  With nothing better to do and no life waiting for him, Shadow takes the job.  He is plunged into a world of folklore and fantasy, dead and modern religions, and Americana, where the new gods are battling with the old, and Shadow must decide which side he is on.

So, now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, I’m going to say the words that just might offend some people:  I didn’t like it.  I didn’t hate it.  I really didn’t love it though.  I wanted to, I wanted to love it so so bad.  I wanted it to be my new go-to book that I could read over and over again.  But I can’t, and I probably won’t read it again.

I’m sighing loudly as I type this, because I have only heard good things about it.  What’s wrong with me?  Why couldn’t I just enjoy it?  Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t hate it.  The idea behind it is really great, the concept.  I liked the twists and turns, and I didn’t see most of them coming, especially the big ‘un at the end.  I liked all the gods we got to meet, I liked that the new gods communicated through television.  But overall, something about it just didn’t sit right with me.  It jumped around too much, I couldn’t get a firm grip on what was going on or where we were.  Maybe it just didn’t live up to the hype for me.  I hate writing these kind of reviews, good thing I’m totally loving Good Omens and still have to write about Love Medicine.


Don’t trust me? GOOD.  These kids had something else to say:

If she could only read 5 books for the rest of her life, Nymeth would choose American Gods as one of them.  Chris would take it to a desert island with him.  And those two know what they’re talking about it!  I think you should listen to them over me.  They know something I don’t 😉


8 thoughts on “Review – American Gods by Neil Gaiman

  1. Said “meh” has caused no end of bloggers’ disbelief. What can I say? I liked it, I really enjoyed it, but it’s not Top 10. So I know what you mean.

  2. I started American Gods last summer and only got part way through before I gave up for the time being. I wanted to love it too, but something just wasn’t working. So I quit for the time being and am going to try again sometime later. Can’t love everything 🙂

  3. Don’t worry, you’re not the first person I’ve met who wasn’t nuts about this one! It seems like people either go gaga over this book, like me :p or it’s just kind of ok for them. Personally, I could read this one over and over again…I was blown away by it. But it’s definitely not a book for everyone! It just happened to suit my tastes really well.

  4. Don’t feel bad! The first time I read this one, I wasn’t super-impressed either. I felt kind of ‘meh’ about the whole thing. But then I read some other Gaiman that I loved, and eventually I decided to reread this one and *then* I loved it. I would never have a new-to-Gaiman reader start with this one! 🙂

  5. Don’t worry, Lu, we forgive you 😉 The thing about Neil Gaiman is that he’s so versatile that you could even hate one of his books and fall in love with the next! I’m glad you’re enjoying Good Omens 😀 I love that book to bits.

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