Tag Archive: Neil Gaiman



American GodsAmerican Gods by Neil Gaiman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What if you mix a radio show, comparative religion, with a road trip? This is it!

Look, I see a lot of differing reviews on this book. I think if you are able to listen to the Audible version you would like it better. The many actors bring this far-fetched story alive. The narrators: Ron McLarty, Daniel Oreskes, and full cast (whatever that means) make you see gods, goddesses and dead people and other characters. They help you feel the cold, the pain, smell rot or smoke.

I don’t know if I would have liked the book had I just read it without the Audible narration. I think it might have been more meandering and possibly boring. What kept me going was wanting to see what would happen to the main character. And having a bit of interest in other religions and cultures I wanted to see how Neil Gaiman would portray them and the war between them as they were fading into the obscurity of disbelief.

This wasn’t my favorite book. It is very male-heavy. Goddesses and women were given little time or depth. BUT I doubt I will forget it and may want to read it again in a few years and see how it affects me then. I highly recommend using the audio version to immerse in this world, which may be America, but a different dimension than where most live.

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Good OmensGood Omens by Terry Pratchett

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Okay. This was fun. I love the dark, tongue-in-cheek humor throughout this book. I loved trying to find where Pratchett left off and Gaiman takes over. BUT as much as I love the British sense of humor, I found I often fell asleep while reading this book. Could be just me… or Winter doldrums taking over. But my favorite parts of the book were where the authors talked about each other and the writing of the book. I know if I had tried to read it without the Audible version going on with the reading I would have not finished reading it. Martin Jarvis (Narrator) kept the story alive for me. I loved how he could move from character to character seamlessly, and at one part I think that must have been quite the feat! When two voices inhabited one body it had to be difficult to keep the people straight. But he carried through and had me laughing out loud at times.

I have a problem. When male narrators read for the female character, it always sounds strange. It makes the female sound even funnier than I think the author might have wanted. When female narrators read for the male character, it sounds more realistic, like an adolescent boy. I don’t know what the male narrator can do to make up for that to make it work, but I thought I’d mention it to see if it bothers other listeners.

I have read tons of Terry Pratchett and love his writing and imagination. Rest in Peace sweet man. I’ve not read so much of Neil Gaiman, but each book I’ve read of his makes me want to read more. Neither author needs my approval with their huge fan base so I don’t feel bad giving this book less than 5 stars. BUT I must for the dull parts where I nearly feel asleep while reading. I just remember thinking that they needed to get on with the apocalypse already. Seems awful to wish that even for a humorous book like this.

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The Ocean at the End of the LaneThe Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I can see my friends faces as they shake their heads and murmur, “It’s about time!” So. Yeah. This is my first Neil Gaiman. Note the five stars. I know! He’s written Doctor Who episodes that I loved. How could I not love his other writing? I do have another book and narration sitting around waiting for me to get around to it. But this one took priority. Library book. They always take top of the list because of their due date. So, sorry other authors, waiting for me to get to your books. When a book comes off hold and lands in my lap, I have to read it first.

Do I dare say I would have love to have a teacher read this aloud to my class as a kid. You know the chapter books that you would have to put your head on your desk as the teacher read. Yeah, it had it’s scary parts, but I think a child could handle it.

Okay. I can, also, hear mumbling about my reading goals of strictly female writers with strong female characters. Well, it’s not written in stone is it? Sometimes a person has to stray to see the color of the grass or, in this case, interesting writing of the others.

Though the main character is a young boy, the heroes of this story were women. Strong women! Witchy, magickal womyn! Without these womyn, this story would be BORING! But you never get to know them or get inside their heads. This is all from the boy’s head. In fact, you never even learn his name or where he is. And since there are references to place in gestures, food, accents, it seems unnecessary to name it. Funny how that bothered me, but I didn’t care if I had the kid’s name. Really. Did I miss something? My guess is this is somewhere in southern US. But other clues made me wonder if it were in some British colony (Australia? South Africa?). Hmmm.

But enough about needing labels. This story was the most imaginative I have read in a while. And yet, maybe because it is coming from inside the head of a kid, the most believable. Ocean in a bucket. I want that bucket! I miss the ocean so here in the Nevada desert I could have my beach!

Oh, and talk about brilliant! The transitions between the boy and his adult self, are seamless. And the character remains the same person. I am more amazed by the book the more I think about it! How is that possible?

So I plan to read more Gaiman very soon! And watch more Doctor Who. Thanks, my friends, for being patient while I catch up! 😉

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