Read It: American Gods

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American Gods by Neil Gaiman

 All your questions can be answered, if that is what you want. But once you learn your answers, you can never unlearn them.

Shadow, a convict who spent three years in prison, was released earlier than expected following the death of his wife Laura and best friend Robbie. With nothing else left to do and live for, he accepts the proposal to be a bodyguard for Wednesday. Together, they travel across the US meeting with different people. Shadow then learns that Wednesday is the incarnation of Odin, the all-father, and that the people they were meeting were in fact, the embodiment of gods and goddesses of different religions/cultures. These gods are meeting and taking sides because a war is about to ensue between the old gods (Greek, Roman, Norse, etc) and the new gods (Technology, Money, etc).

The premise of the novel sounds very interesting. A battle between the old and the new gods shows that people may have the tendency to forget their beliefs in return of new things and that progress makes religion take a back seat. The old gods are starting to wither because they are slowly being forgotten and the new gods are gaining power because people believe in them. But is this really the case? I’m not very sure about the connection between the old and the new because the supposed new gods aren’t really you know, things/persona that people blindly worship. I get what Gaiman wanted to show but he lost me a bit on that part. I’m not very sure so maybe I have to think this concept through once again.

On another note, Shadow as the lead character continues to fail at getting me hooked. He is probably the dullest/apathetic sounding lead character for me. I get that he lost the love of his life but it’s just too much that he has this I-don’t-care attitude. I liked Wednesday though because he was mysterious (kind of) and it’s just there was more to discover about him than Shadow.

I think that Gaiman wanted to paint a picture of the modern America through this novel. Well, he did but I think there are still loopholes in this portrayal. I liked some part of it but I am not a fan. Regarding the TV adaptation, I tried watching it but I’m not into it.

PS: I’m sharing some of the quotes from the book because apparently, I am still emotionally under stress. Hehehe.

I believe that all men are just overgrown boys with deep problems communicating.

Too much talking these days. Talk talk talk. This country would get along much better if people learned how to suffer in silence.

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About Elaine

interior designer | occasional bookworm | closet otaku | music lover | frustrated craftsman | lazy artist | part time bum
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