I started reading American Gods by Neil Gaiman and though I am not even half way through it I can see why so many people like it. I like seeing mythical gods of different cultures adapted into different forms of storytelling. Most of the big ones that I’ve seen other than in the Tiger’s Curse series have been based largely in North America. This forces the writer to explain why the gods are there in the first place because North America is not the homeland of most of the cultures of the world. In Percy Jackson it is revealed that they are in North America because there is an entrance to Olympus in Manhattan. It doesn’t quite explain why the Greek and Roman gods are there, they just are.
This is something that I feel American Gods is doing well. In this book the gods came with people coming to settle in the USA. This makes sense to me. Also in this book gods are being created based off of various products and infrastructure that are found all over the place such as wood, stone, roads, and television. These gods are replacing the gods that were brought over from Europe, Africa, and Asia, This makes sense as well because most of the gods featured in this book are from largely dead religions.
In a book about gods a lot of things can be done. Characters can be resurrected, there can be scenes that just confuse the hell out of you, and any rules that have been established in fiction can be ignored because there are a whole bunch of different gods. In this book the main characters dead wife comes back to life to help him, a character pulls a silver dollar out of the moon, and a leprechaun dies because he gave up a special coin and doesn’t truly die until the next day. These rules are being broken in the best ways and I love it.
At the time when I am writing this I am only halfway through the novel. I hope it gets even better at it goes on. I may even review it after I am done reading it.