Jason’s Ranting & Raving

Those who don’t read have no advantage over those who can’t.

Book Review: American Gods by Neil Gaiman

Posted by jaystile on November 19, 2008

Neil Gaiman is author of ’American Gods’ and the Sandman series of graphic novels (a.k.a. comic books). The gist of the story is that all the immigrants to America brought their gods with them from their country of origin. As people stop worshiping these gods the gods lose their power and influence. Since they are immortal the tend to just wither and do mundane things just trying to survive. The story revolves around the main character, Shadow, who is just released from prison and finds himself taking a job with a man named Wednesday (a.k.a. Odin, All-Father, of the Asgardian pantheon of Nordic tradition) The fun continues from there. A war is brewing between the old gods and the new gods (television, internet, etc.) There are some accurate things in the book regarding the origin of Easter and it’s traditions. Also, references to the Egyptian pantheon (Ra, Horus, Ibis, Bast, etc.), native American gods, and others I was not familiar with like the Albanian gods.

I enjoyed Gaiman’s Sandman series more than this book. I’m not really putting out a recommendation for anyone to read this. But if you have some time to kill it’s not a bad option. It feels as I am wasting time when I read fiction. I don’t feel like I’ve accomplished anything, nor do I feel like I have bettered myself. It should be remembered that those who don’t read have no advantage over those who cannot.


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