Friday, March 29, 2013

American Gods by Neil Gaiman

This is the second Neil Gaiman book I've read and it still amazes me how he can come up with these things. It takes a creative mind to write a story like American Gods (and I can imagine tons of research), a story that can weird you out but keep you hooked at the same time. There were moments where I had to reread a chapter just to see if I understood the events that unfolded correctly.

American Gods follows Shadow, an ex-con who finds himself widowed a few days before his parole and, after being employed by an old man named Wednesday, gets caught in a bi-dimensional war between powerful mythical beings.

The story has a lot of subplots that I kind of found out of place. It's like going through a city with a lot of twists and turns and then you'd find yourself in a dead end. The characters are somewhat predictable; you could tell who Mr. Wednesday is right off the bat, and Shadow's kind nature and quiet intensity makes it easier to guess what he'd do in certain situations. I think what really kept me reading was the sheer "weirdness" of it all (religion, gods and rituals, both ancient and modern) and yet it all seems so believable, thanks to the author putting in copious amounts of research.

So did I like it? I don't know, really. But I have to admit that it was a bit anti-climactic; I was expecting the book to end with some sort of bang but it fell short of my expectations and left me scratching my head and asking "That's it?" Still, I have to applaud Mr. Gaiman for the creativity.

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