Chlover’s Garden

Fairy Tales begin with more than Once Upon a Time…

American Gods Analysis

I actually read American Gods by Neil Gaiman┬áthis summer! I quite enjoyed the book as it was a myth not a fairy tale. It dealt with gods that died and came back to life, sacrifice, power of manipulation. Mostly it is a myth because it was not a happy story, it was all about Mr. Wednesday told through the eyes of his newly hired body guard (Shadow, who we learn towards the end of the book is actually this God’s son). It’s about the rough life immigrants have coming to the new land, the land devoid of gods, the land that was never meant for gods, the land where gods come and go and all are trying to survive by stepping on one-another. Mr Wednesday, as we find out deep into the book is the God Odin, who is given life through dedication of death and destruction, is fading away and trying to save himself. He is the archetype of a mysterious character who we don’t know if they are bad or good until the end.

Shadow is the protagonist of the story, because he is human and is suffering from normal human things: betrayed by partners, jail, learning his wife cheated on him while in jail, etc. His life is basically in shambles which makes the readers either relate or be thankful they were not swept up into the war between gods. He does a good job at connecting with the readers so that we can feel more invested in the story. Throughout the story bits of information are revealed about who Mr. Wednesday is as we begin to understand the deeper layers of what Shadow has gotten involved with. The story was entertaining and kept a good pace; however, near the end, when everything is being revealed, I started getting confused with all the moving parts and found the reasoning behind certain behaviors strange. Overall I truly enjoyed the book, I have been a Neil Gaiman fan since my family introduced me to Anansi Boys and his episode of Doctor Who!

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