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Urban Fantasy > American Gods

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message 1: by Jason (new)

Jason (darkfiction) | 3204 comments American Gods is one of my favorite books of all-time. I read it when it first came out and have read it a few more times since.

Gaiman's ability at creating realistic characters and awesome dialogue always surprises me. But this book has it all. It's almost like the pinnacle of his career.

I wonder if he will ever be able to top it?

What do you guys thing? Have you read this book? Did you love it like I did? Did you hate it?

Let's Discuss.


message 2: by Amanda (new)

Amanda M. Lyons (amandamlyons) I loved it. His quirky sense of humor and sense of the way we'd deal with such events suddenly taking over our lives was great. I especially love the way he wrote mythological characters like Anansi (which I also loved in Anansi Boys). The interesting turn of events at the end of the book also comes to mind pretty often.


message 3: by Brainycat (new)

Brainycat | 70 comments It's been quite a while since I read it, and I was under the influence, so I don't remember a lot of details. I remember enjoying it, but I was thinking to myself, "Where's the awesome everyone keeps talking about?"

I'll put it on the TBR pile, I should read it sober and see how I like it.


message 4: by Jason (new)

Jason (darkfiction) | 3204 comments I loved Anansi Boys too! That book was so funny!

American Gods does indeed have that quirky sence of humor as well, but within a more serious atmosphere, IMO.

Brainycat, Perhaps all the people raving about the book put your expectations too high? That sometimes happens to me. I keep hearing about how great a certain book or movie is, then when I go and try it out, I'm left scratching my head.


message 5: by Amanda (new)

Amanda M. Lyons (amandamlyons) Jason wrote: "I loved Anansi Boys too! That book was so funny!

American Gods does indeed have that quirky sence of humor as well, but within a more serious atmosphere, IMO.

Brainycat, Perhaps all the peopl..."


Definitely more serious than Anansi Boys. I loved the whole tone just about as satisfying as reading a good Barker book.


message 6: by Jason (new)

Jason (darkfiction) | 3204 comments Funny you mention that about Barker, Amanda. When I first started reading Gaiman, I found a few parallels between the two authors. I think that Barker was a big influence on Gaiman's beginning work. Aside from Stardust, that is.

Which is cool, I think!


message 7: by Amanda (last edited Jul 18, 2010 01:18PM) (new)

Amanda M. Lyons (amandamlyons) I had wondered that. Book of Magic and Sandman did have some tones in that direction. I own but haven't read Stardust yet. It's one of those book giving me the evil eye from the shelf.

I felt Coraline had similar plot and tone to The Thief of Always.


message 8: by Jason (new)

Jason (darkfiction) | 3204 comments I haven't read Coraline yet. But I have seen the movie. If they're anything alike, then I can see some parallels of it to Thief of Always as well.

Stardust is pure fantasy. The movie for it wasn't bad, either.


message 9: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 940 comments I have not read American Gods yet and would like that suggested for the Urban Fantasy reading list.


message 10: by Jason (new)

Jason (darkfiction) | 3204 comments I will add that to the list!


message 11: by Aloha (new)

Aloha | 940 comments Thanks!


message 12: by Amanda (last edited Jul 18, 2010 06:58PM) (new)

Amanda M. Lyons (amandamlyons) Jason wrote: "I haven't read Coraline yet. But I have seen the movie. If they're anything alike, then I can see some parallels of it to Thief of Always as well.

Stardust is pure fantasy. The movie for it was..."



Cool I'll have to read it then. Maybe we ought to add it it to the Epic Fantasy list.


message 13: by Jason (new)

Jason (darkfiction) | 3204 comments I'm not sure you'd call it epic, necessarily, IMO. I would say that it's more of a fairy tale. But it would probably fit more in the epic than the urban.


message 14: by Elien (new)

Elien | 36 comments Just picked it up at the library and skimmed the first few pages. I think I'm going to like this one! :)


message 15: by Kevin (new)

Kevin | 284 comments I'm going to read this but I'm still deciding on which version to get, the simple paperback or splurge a bit on the new 'authors preferred text anniversary edition' hardcover.


message 16: by Bill (new)

Bill (kernos) | 350 comments I've read the standard edition and have the Anniversary edition. Comparing them with the added material will allow me to compare the editions and better understand the book. This novel deserves such an effort.

OTOH, Gaiman has a tendency to get special editions of his work published. Consider The Absolute Sandman, a massive, beautiful and expensive 4 volume compilation of the Sandman GNs. I sometimes wonder if these are just lets-make-some-more money efforts like with DVD versions of movies.


message 17: by Chris (new)

Chris  (haughtc) *coughGeorgeLucascough*


colleen the convivial curmudgeon (blackrose13) I'm undecided as to whether get the Anniversary edition or not. I really like American Gods, but I do feel it's a bit slow and bloated in places, and I'm not sure I feel the need for it to be longer.

I guess I'll wait and see what people say - about whether the new material is worth it or not.

That said, I had no interest in Absolute Sandman, mostly because of what seems to me to be a rather excessive price for a series I already own - but when I saw some of the differences in the artwork, I gotta say I am seriously thinking of getting it at some point.

Maybe I'll wait for a gift-getting occasion, though.


message 19: by MrsJoseph *grouchy*, *good karma* (new)

MrsJoseph *grouchy* (mrsjoseph) | 7282 comments I don't know why, maybe its the fact that it's a graphic novel, but I've never had any interest in Sandman. In fact, I've never read any Gaiman.


message 20: by Kevin (last edited Jul 27, 2011 08:22AM) (new)

Kevin | 284 comments Kernos wrote: "I sometimes wonder if these are just lets-make-some-more money efforts like with DVD versions of movies. "

Duh, of course they are. :p

But as long as stuff like that actually adds something to the product I'm not really bothered by stuff it.

Whenever my favourite band releases a new cd I'm always buying the same product 3-4 times. regular cd, limited edition cd, and the vinyl version, and a special edition vinyl too if there's a difference.


message 21: by Denae (new)

Denae (whimsicalmeerkat) | 0 comments The difference in the coloring in the original and the Absolute editions makes it absolutely worth it in my opinion. I don't say that lightly by any means. They are absolutely stunning books, and this is from someone who rarely if ever buys anything hardback, let alone the price these are.


message 22: by Bill (new)

Bill (kernos) | 350 comments KevinB wrote: "Kernos wrote: "I sometimes wonder if these are just lets-make-some-more money efforts like with DVD versions of movies. "

Duh, of course they are. :p

But as long as stuff like that actually adds..."


Certainly the publishers do it for the money, but I speaking more of the authors. I would be disappointed in an author who added or removed some words just to sell a new addition and not to make the book better in their opinion. Samuel Delany did this for one of his books, ?Dhalgren¿, and it took some edition research to figure out his preferred edition. I have encountered a number of authors PO'ed by their editors for 'ruining' their novels which were then republished after it became famous, but memory fails.

I agree the Absolute Sandman is super-gorgeous. I got the 4 volumes as they came out. I'm a sucker for beautiful, slip-cased editions, esp of fiction. There is a new edition of Dorian Gray, my next read: The Picture of Dorian Gray: An Annotated Uncensored Edition which is very nice and not too expensive.


message 23: by Elien (new)

Elien | 36 comments An wrote: ... "I think I'm going to like this one! :)"

Okay, as much as I hate to say it, I take that back. I really expected to like this book, since I'm all into mythology and all, and Good Omens is on my list of all-time favourite books. Now, I didn't *hate* American Gods, but still it was just 'meh' IMO.

Maybe my expectations were too high... *shrugs*


message 24: by MrsJoseph *grouchy*, *good karma* (new)

MrsJoseph *grouchy* (mrsjoseph) | 7282 comments I'm afraid of that, too. It's been built up a lot.


message 25: by Jason (new)

Jason (darkfiction) | 3204 comments That's probably it, An. I find that sometimes, when people recommend books like mad to me I don't see what they did. I read American Gods when it first came out, though. It blew me away back then. It's one of the only books I've reread more than twice, as well.


message 26: by Darrell (new)

Darrell | 3 comments I tried to read it, but couldn't finish it. just not to my taste. it gets a 1 from me. :(


message 27: by Kevin (new)

Kevin Xu (kxu65) Darrell wrote: "I tried to read it, but couldn't finish it. just not to my taste. it gets a 1 from me. :("

Wow, really even if it is a bad book, I don't think American Gods deserved a one, maybe a two at the most.


message 28: by [deleted user] (new)

Ratings are Personal opinions.


message 29: by PostCardashian (new)

PostCardashian Kim | 5 comments I didn't know Neil Gaiman wrote this kind of thing. I've only seen his childrens story 'The Graveyard Book' which is fantastic. This story sounds like its perfect for sequels or a series. Did he write any?


message 30: by Kevin (last edited Sep 10, 2011 03:54AM) (new)

Kevin | 284 comments PostCardashian wrote: "I didn't know Neil Gaiman wrote this kind of thing. I've only seen his childrens story 'The Graveyard Book' which is fantastic. This story sounds like its perfect for sequels or a series. Did he wr..."

Anansi Boys is a spin-off in the same setting.

I believe that he's in the process of writing a sequel to American Gods. There's also going to be a HBO series which will draw from both the original book and the sequel.


message 31: by Bill (new)

Bill (kernos) | 350 comments KevinB wrote: "...I believe that he's in the process of writing a sequel to American Gods. There's also going to be a HBO series which will draw from both the original book and the sequel"

See http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1898069/ and IMDBPro users here?


message 32: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl (chesan) | 32 comments I love this book and it's in my Top 10. I love the whole concept of how the "old gods" are brought to the States and the way he uses them in the story whether they are impactful or not.


message 33: by J.A. (new)

J.A. Beard (jabeard) I liked American Gods okay, but it did get a bit over-hyped to me.

I'm kind of the opposite of Cheryl though. For me, the the various asides from the main plot weakened the narrative rather than added to it. That being said, I still thought it was an enjoyable read exploring some interesting ideas.

When I first moved to Wisconsin (this was in 2006), one of the first places I went was the House on the Rock.

Man, that place is sooo weird. Words, even Mr. Gaiman's fine words can't do justice to its weirdness. I can understand how Mr. Gaiman could go through it and immediately think, "Yeah, this is definitely something I should include in a book."

I'm looking forward to the series.


message 34: by Rainy (new)

Rainy Kaye (rainyofthedark) | 5 comments I loved it. My favorite from Gaiman so far.


message 35: by Pickle (new)

Pickle | 13 comments i wasnt able to get past 150 pages due to the numerous dream sequences. I might give it a go again as its a group read..


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