My rating: 5 of 5 stars
A fascinating book. Gaiman takes elements from mythologies across the globe and weaves them into a contemporary fantasy that’s unlike any other book I’ve read. Really, there was nothing to NOT like about the book. The characters were all well rounded, and it was a lot of fun to see how different gods interacted with other gods. For one thing, these gods are vastly diminished in power. It’s not like you’re seeing all powerful Zeus engaged in Mighty Battle with Thor or anything like that. No, in this world, the gods have fallen from grace, more or less. Thor shot himself a few years back. Horus has forgotten what it’s like to be in human form. Ibis is a mortician. The contrast from where these characters usually appear in stories and how they’re used in this book . . . that was half the fun right there.
American Gods is more literary than your average fantasy. More literary that your unaverage fantasy, for that matter. The text was a pleasure to read, and the plot was sufficiently paced to keep my interest. Shadow, the main character, is complex and intriguing, and I was really rooting for his success.
The book would be R-rated if it were a movie, so take that as a warning, but if you’re okay with that and want a fascinating read, give this one a shot. It’s some great Gaiman.