Kyle Nakamura's Reviews > American Gods

American Gods by Neil Gaiman
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Mar 12, 08

Recommended for: fans of mythology or pure storytelling
Read in January, 2002

This is, in my opinion, one of Neil Gaiman's best novels, and certainly one of his most mature. He manages to maintain the quirky sense of mythological heresy that pervaded his work in Sandman, and balance it with the day-to-day drama of human relationships (well, mostly human anyway).
The characters are, in context, quite sensible and realistic, and his imagining of the new world and old world gods struggling to survive in a largely secular america (his world doesn't care what you SAY you believe in, only what you REALLY believe in) is one of the most refreshing and tragic visions of our religious heritage I've seen in awhile.
As you might imagine, over-application of logic and skepticism will ruin the book for you. That is not to say that Gaiman really goes out on a limb, in fact I think he's one of the most toned down and deliberate authors in the genre, but at it's core American Gods is still old-school campfire and cave-painting storytelling that requires a conscious decision to immerse oneself in the reality of the story to really enjoy it.
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