Oceana2602’s review of American Gods (American Gods #1) > Likes and Comments

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message 1: by Nic (new)

Nic I actually didn't like American Gods either, at all, but loved its (very different) sequel, Anansi Boys. It has a more coherent plot and likable characters. I also enjoyed Good Omens, which Gaiman co-authored with Terry Pratchett. If you have the time, I'd recommend trying either or both of those.


message 2: by Snuffles (last edited Feb 12, 2010 07:10AM) (new)

Snuffles I agree with you on the book, even though I have to admit that I am not the kind of person who finishes books she doesn't like, so all I can truthfully say is that I didn't like the first 50 or so pages. But I disliked them so much that I simply couldn't make myself go on.

Having said this I have to add though that I read Gaiman's Neverwhere before and really enjoyed it. I also loved Good Omens. They were the reason why I started American Gods in the first place. Like Nic said above, you should really give Good Omens a try if you haven't done so yet. It's great. =D


message 3: by Mark (new)

Mark Vandervinne Read Gaiman. Yes! Just not this book. (I didn't like it much either.) Start with Neverwhere. I guarantee it will not disappoint (unlike American Gods which did). Then maybe The Graveyard Book, a young adult story that is truly wonderful.


message 4: by Zeena Price (new)

Zeena  Price Hahaha loved your review. Didn't agree with it, but it did make me laugh :-)


message 5: by Mark (new)

Mark Vandervinne Oceana2602, please don't give up on Gaiman because of this book. I love Gaiman, and didn't find this one interesting at all. Neverwhere is the place to start. Stardust is good too. And the young adult book the Graveyard Book which has deservedly won the Newberry and Hugo Awards. I haven't read Anansi Boys yet, due to my disliking of American Gods, but do plan on picking it up, after reading a collection of short stories by Neil and falling in love with him again.


message 6: by Neil (new)

Neil I just finished a re-reading of the book - nine years after the first reading. There was much I had forgotten but I now knew the themes and the background to the story. With that context, I read it again with much deeper understanding of the roles of the characters, who they were, and what their motivations were.

My knowledge of Mythology is not encyclopedic enough such that I understood the references to gods and mythologies but looking them up as I went along helped a lot.

I loved this book the first time but found it more satisfying the second time as I saw the plots developing from their early roots. We can disagree about whether it is his best novel but I believe that it is his most ambitious.

I wonder if Neal Stephenson's Anathem would be to your taste?


Emory's Defunct Profile EXACTLY. So many people have recomended Neil Gaiman to me but i found it badly written and uninteresting.
The problem with Gaiman is that he feels the desire to spend an entire book on a confusing and boring plotline and ignore other storylines that i would actually like to read about. For example, I read another book by Neil Gaiman, 'Good Omens' and he spent chapter and chapters on this girl who claimed she was a witch and her nerdy boyfriend who barely contributed to the end anyway, while I was much more interested in Aziraphale, Crowley, and Adam Young, all of whom I thought weren't expanded on like they should have been. Gaiman can be funny and interesting at times, but throughout the book I repeatedly found myself wondering where exactly the author was intending to take the story, if anywhere.


message 8: by Eden (new)

Eden Prosper I'm about half way through this book and still waiting to feel interested. At this point, I'm forcing myself forward, wondering if perhaps it's one of those books that wraps up with an astounding ending, considering the high ratings and the recommendations from friends. Your review is exactly how I’m feeling about this book and with the ending still being a big old “but why!?” is pretty discouraging! I’m not one to leave a book unfinished, but this one is certainly proving hard to pick up.


message 9: by Vicki (new)

Vicki G I've never read anything he's written. But I feel the same way about Stephen King that you feel about Neil Gaiman.
And he's not, nor has he ever been, "America's number-one scary writer."
Anne Rice held that position and, before her, Edgar Allan Poe.
I've never been scared reading one of 'the great Stephen King's stories' the way I have been w/ Rice and Poe.
The point is that everyone said I HAVE TO READ Stephen King if I like horror.
No I don't.


message 10: by Elena (new)

Elena MyLordVetinari Well, never thought of Gaiman as a King of Horror, but he's nowhere near Poe, and that's it. Concerning the book - well, did 150 pages and dropped it, not far after the Slavic Gods episode with a coin. Committed to the Russian culture as well, literally hated those god's names. I just saw no point in the book, as in "what's the reason for all this to happen"? Probably just not my thing though.


message 11: by Mary Grace (new)

Mary Grace Nakao I think you should read his other works..This is really not that good


message 12: by Tengizi (new)

Tengizi I totally agree with the opinion of the author's review.
It was the strangest book I've read...


message 13: by Paige (new)

Paige Kleckner AG is my least favorite by him. Read Neverwhere or his collections of short stories (Smoke and Mirrors or Fragile Things) I love them so much more. You really should keep reading Gaiman!


message 14: by Tenoko1 (new)

Tenoko1 Personally, I say give one of his other books a-go, like "Neverland". It took me a few pages to get use to his writing style, but I love that book. I hated American Gods. Didn't finish. Wanted to throw through a window. Set one fire, and call a priest to exorcise after having that thing of evil in it. Bad writing is bad and there's no excuse. But not all his books are such fail.


message 15: by Liz (new)

Liz I agree this wasn't one of my favorites, "Neverwhere" is my favorite or read his graphic novel series "The Sandman" which is great.


message 16: by Sam (new)

Sam I guess if you didn't like this, maybe you should check out some graphic novels and.... READ GAIMAN!


message 17: by Rob (new)

Rob P. I liked the book, but I dont think the last third was executed properly. I felt for Shadow in the beginning of the book, by the end I no longer cared.


message 18: by Ramona (new)

Ramona White Vicki wrote: "I've never read anything he's written. But I feel the same way about Stephen King that you feel about Neil Gaiman.
And he's not, nor has he ever been, "America's number-one scary writer."
Anne Rice..."


I hated hated hated Stephen King's "Bag of Bones." I had read his memoir- which I loved- and knew where he was going and still hated it. I loved "Dolores Claiborne" and "The Shining." Why? My guess is that bits of my life experience matched up with bit shaped openings in the stories and made them relatable enough to draw me in. (None of my relationships has been that bad though. Phew!)

I'm not sure how far I got in "American Gods" because I can't find my copy. I guess that says a lot right there, huh? What I can remember disappointed me in a similar way that Robert Heinlein's "Job" did. If you have all the pantheons in the world to work with, are creating your own universe, and can make anything happen, why not fling the doors open and give your characters a sense of wonder about the surreal things happening around them? (Unless you're living in the world of Hogwarts where magical things happen all the time.)

I'm going to try to find and finish this book because it was given to me by someone whose opinion I trust. We'll see...


message 19: by Karen (new)

Karen Really? You must've missed something, somewhere. You think Gaiman is overrated? Haven't you read 'Sandman'? 'American Gods' is a sprawling journey across cultures, beliefs and personal survival.


message 20: by Josh (new)

Josh gimp


message 21: by Gbolahan (last edited Apr 22, 2014 08:23AM) (new)

Gbolahan Misty wrote: "Personally, I say give one of his other books a-go, like "Neverland". It took me a few pages to get use to his writing style, but I love that book. I hated American Gods. Didn't finish. Wanted to t..."

Hahahahahahahaha! Someone call the exorcist!
I finished this book and know exactly what you felt...!
And, yeah, by Neverland, you meant Neverwhere, right?


message 22: by Gbolahan (new)

Gbolahan LOL!
But...which car race video game?


message 23: by Oceana2602 (new)

Oceana2602 Grand Theft Auto, the game is called. It was all the rage a few years ago. :-)


message 24: by Gbolahan (new)

Gbolahan Oceana2602 wrote: "Grand Theft Auto, the game is called. It was all the rage a few years ago. :-)"

Ha ha ha...! Got it... :)


message 25: by Anita (new)

Anita Don't give up on Gaiman. I hated this book too, but then had to read 'Neverwhere' for an assignment and really enjoyed that. Good luck!


message 26: by Debi (new)

Debi Baptista I can't finish reading this book. It's creepy and it doesn't go anywhere .


message 27: by Anita (new)

Anita Don't worry, I had to skip over the last two-thirds too! Try 'Neverwhere' that does go Somewhere!!! (Sorry bad joke).


message 28: by Deb (new)

Deb I just finished it (FINALLY!) and feel the same way. Between the dreams, flashbacks, halucinations, and timeline changes, it was hard to follow. I thought the book would never end. I just heard this week that it will be made into a series on the cable network Starz. Maybe it will translate better on the small screen. Anyway, i am hesitant to read another Gaiman book. This one was a bit too crazy fir me.


message 29: by Mason (new)

Mason Thomas I share your lack of interest and enthusiasm for this book. I still have a third of the way to go but it takes awhile to get me reading it. I have finished 5 other books since I started reading "American God's". I refuse to let a book beat me so I am going to finish it eventually.

I am questioning whether or not I like Gaiman as well. I thought "Stardust" was an enjoyable story and "Good Omens" is one of my favorite books that I have read. I am wondering how much of what made "Good Omens" so good was Terry Pratchett instead of Gaiman. I will have to give him one more shot with "Neverwhere" before I literally close the book on him.


message 30: by William (new)

William You people are the reason The U.S. Ranks as low as it does in terms of literacy and education.


message 31: by Mason (new)

Mason Thomas William wrote: "You people are the reason The U.S. Ranks as low as it does in terms of literacy and education."

You're an idiot. Just because someone does't like a book doesn't make them the problem with American literacy. It's one book. I am sure there are books you don't care for that people could say the same thing about you. Get off of you snobby high horse and let people read and have their own opinion. People constantly belittling other people's view of a books probably has more to do with literacy and education in American than not liking a book. You discourage people from reading and cultivating their own opinions of the world and culture.


message 32: by Gbolahan (new)

Gbolahan Mason wrote: "William wrote: "You people are the reason The U.S. Ranks as low as it does in terms of literacy and education."

You're an idiot. Just because someone does't like a book doesn't make them the probl..."


Nice.
Thank you.
But, please, don't let him goad you any further. You know that's what he wants...
"You people..." >snorts< ☺


message 33: by Gbolahan (new)

Gbolahan I think Mr Gaiman wrote this book cos he wanted to simply screw with all of us.
Some people say they know art. They know what the artist was thinking when he/she produced the work of art, they know how to properly analyse art.
I saw a movie where some art "critics" were told that some certain works were drawn by popular artists (I think Gary Oldman was in this movie). These critics had nothing but praise for those paintings. They were then taken to another room where similar paintings as the ones they'd viewed before were brought in and shown to them, only this time they were told that these new paintings were imitations of the previous paintings they'd seen in the first room.
The critics thoroughly critcised and insulted these new paintings that were imitations, saying they were not anywhere as good as the real paintings.
What these critics didn't know was that both sets of paintings were the same.
I see Gaiman reading the reviews of some people who "understood" his American gods novel, reading what he (Gaiman) meant by the novel, reading the "true" meaning he was trying to put across by the novel...
And I see Mr Gaiman laughing his sick eccentric head off.
He wrote this novel to screw with us all and to mock the people that "understand" the novel. The people that know exactly why he wrote the novel. The people that "recognize" art.
Nice work, Mr Gaiman. Well freaking played.


message 34: by Sara (new)

Sara I agree and disagree with you. I LOVE Gaiman BUT I understand your irritation with everyone's insistence that you read his work. I feel the same way about Stephen King, Dean Koontz, James Patterson, Nora Roberts, Jackie Collins, etc.... I'm sorry you didn't enjoy the book though. Terrible waste of time to read something and hate it implicitly.


message 35: by Elie (new)

Elie Baaklini struggling to finish this book. i'm thinking it will never end. badly written and no plot whatsoever and i lost faith in it after 190 pages. I am going to finish it because i don't want to put a half read book on my shelf but definetly i will not read any of gaiman's book in the future.


message 36: by Gbolahan (new)

Gbolahan Elie wrote: "struggling to finish this book. i'm thinking it will never end. badly written and no plot whatsoever and i lost faith in it after 190 pages. I am going to finish it because i don't want to put a ha..."

Please please please, give him a chance. I dislike American gods myself, but LOVED LOVED LOVED Neverwhere. You gotta read at least Neverwhere.
Meanwhile, I'm reading his collection of short stories titled Fragile Things...and I'm beginning to think Gaiman has this hit-or-miss quality with his stories. He hit with Neverwhere. He TOTALLY missed with American gods.


message 37: by Daniela (new)

Daniela Monje I know this is an old review, but I agree with you. I read Neverwhere and Ocean at the of the Lane and they were ok. I decided to give this one a try since people call it a masterpiece. But alas, couldn't even finish it. Oh well... When you know an author is not for you know.


message 38: by Gbolahan (new)

Gbolahan Nic wrote: "I actually didn't like American Gods either, at all, but loved its (very different) sequel, Anansi Boys. It has a more coherent plot and likable characters. I also enjoyed Good Omens, which Gaiman ..."

I've been seeing lately that some people are calling Anansi Boys a sequel to American gods. Really, those two books are not related. It's like saying Injustice: gods among us is a sequel to (or related to) Percy Jackson and the Olympians just cos they both have Ares and Zeus in them.
That said, Anansi Boys WAS AWESOME!
Good Omens was massive fun too. Off plot, but fun...


message 39: by Hannah (new)

Hannah Maybe you just started with the wrong book? You should read Coraline, Stardust, or Neverwhere... all by Gaiman. ;)


message 40: by Luv (new)

Luv Old review I know. But you're the first comment or who rated this book less than 5 stars so far.

I know what you mean. I'm 70% through this story, and I do get it, I just fail to see the point of it all so far. Is the writer intentionally trying to be evasive and mysterious? I don't mind mystery, but this is just, no. Are we supposed to care about these characters? Cause I sure as hell don't. Most interesting character was the prostitute/goddess who swallowed folks with her pusssy, and she's gone. The guy who I assumed was the other MC died, and I'm yet to feel anything, good or bad about it


message 41: by Suz (new)

Suz Mcguire Nailed it. Exactly how I felt, but you said it much more eloquently than I could muster.


message 42: by Greenstorm (new)

Greenstorm i couldn't have said it better!!


message 43: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy I'm biased because this is my favorite novel. It's my annual reread since I first read it in 2007. To each his own, but this book is exceptionally well written with an incredibly intense prose that compels me to keep turning the pages!


message 44: by Christina (new)

Christina Marie I completely, completely agree.


message 45: by Deb (new)

Deb I loved the first part then completely lost control of the middle to the end. I did muddle through thinking maybe there was something I was missing. I gave it a 4 but should really be a 3 star. I am going to read Neverwhere next and try that one!!


message 46: by Brendan (new)

Brendan 100% agree. It was a struggle to get through and I seriously considered bailing even 3/4 of the way through.


message 47: by Beat (new)

Beat I had the same experience: having the feeling i needed to read something by this apparently important author, and after the reading being left bewildered. I didn't mind the strangeness, but boy, was this badly written. Any author who crams his writing full of metaphors – especially regarding colours – has my immediate distrust.


message 48: by Raj (new)

Raj Pandey You and me.. Outside.. :p


message 49: by Edavidberg (new)

Edavidberg I'm down to the last 100 pages and it's making me angry. The first half of the book wasn't bad but the second has just gotten frustrating. I hate 9 out of every 10 paragraphs because they are meaningless. I don't get why he wrote all this.


message 50: by Siddharth (new)

Siddharth Seems like pulp fiction..


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