I am almost done reading American Gods and so far, I am enjoying it and I feel I am gonna love the ending, I was never disappointed (yet) with a Gaiman ending. Hehehe. What I liked about the book is how it is at times philosophical. For some reason, I really like Laura.
I am planning to read Good Omens soon... I started enjoying his boos after reading "Stardust."
>>By jeeper (Thursday, 18 Jan 2007 12:15)
American Gods... it's a masterpiece in my opinion.
Good Omens is really good too, I read it ages ago when I was into Terry Pratchett.
Have you read any Sandman jeeper?
>>By Flagg (Thursday, 18 Jan 2007 13:48)
I was able to finish Volume 2 of the Sandman, The Doll's House. It brought me great pleasure... i will probably read more books. I enjoyed many parts of it like the guy who meets up with Dream every one hundred years andhow it made mention of the nice but less tame version of Little Red Riding Hood (I loved the story since I read it in Riding Hood: Uncloaked).
Also bought Wolves in the Walls, people think I am unndergoing a strange phase... I loved Dave McKeans illustrations.
>>By jeeper (Tuesday, 13 Feb 2007 13:03)
Yeah, I re-read it recently. That guy Dream meets with is in the series quite a lot. They're best read in order.
Wolves in the Walls is cool too, I'm not sure I'd like it if I was a kid though. It's pretty freaky.
>>By Flagg (Tuesday, 13 Feb 2007 17:49)
Coraline, ostensibly a children's book, is the scariest psychological tale I've read. And much more tightly crafted than American Gods.
>>By Bardo One (Monday, 26 Mar 2007 07:51)
I agree with the first sentence, not the second one. It's shorter yes, and therefore snappier, but it's not more tightly crafted, and it's certainly not a better book.
>>By Flagg (Monday, 26 Mar 2007 15:06)
Yes, Coraline for a children's book is dark and unsettling. And very satisfying. I I have read American Gods, it way have been long but I consider it one of gaiman's best, every details, I enjoyed very much... even the stories that come in between, the stories of the other gods can make a really cool short story collection. I think that both books are great and I think Flagg is correct, Coraline is a short book compared to American Gods. I heard that Gaiman wrote some stories about Shadow after American Gods, still haven't checked it out.
I was able to read Anansi Boys two months ago, there were parts there that was really hilarious. The funeral had me laugh out loud like an idiot. I can't believe I was led by some people that it was a sequel to AG. It has Mr. Nancy dead early in the story. Although this one is really predictable, it is light and still fun to read.
>>By jeeper (Sunday, 15 Apr 2007 04:18)
Yeah Anansi Boys is fun, but I think there's something missing there. Personally I wouldn't want to see Gaiman become purely a comedy author. Sandman and American Gods are two of the best works of fiction I've ever seen because they take themselves seriously.
Yeah, his new short story collection Fragile Things contains a story about Shadow, but I haven't read it yet. I'm saving it ;)
>>By Flagg (Sunday, 15 Apr 2007 12:38)
I had never heard of Neil Gaiman unfortunately, until I received a gift certificate to Barnes & Noble and was perusing the discount bin on the website, and I came across "Coraline" as a book-on-tape. I bought it and I loved it so much that I bought the actual book. Gaiman is such an awesome writer. He writes in that awesome way that reminds me of writers like Ray Bradbury and Clive Barker, where his children's books are so superbly crafted that they inspire you to read them even if you aren't a child anymore! I have not finished Coraline yet, since I am a grad student studying English and I had a lot of work to do, but now that the semester is over I can take some time to read for leisure...and Coraline is first on my list.
>>By holeINmySOUL6 (Thursday, 17 May 2007 22:27)
In order, of which I've read...
THE SANDMAN: Mind-numbingly amazing. Plenty of literature's greats wrote their novels first in part of a monthly series, this one just happens to have fantastic artwork which matches up with each section of the story. The way Gaiman dropped a trail of bread crumbs, sometimes months, sometimes years in advance, and then brought all his dolls marching home by the end of his tale, simply wonderful. So much subtext, and yet so much simple joy to be discovered. This is like seeing Fairy Tales, Mythology and the writings of Jung and Cambell come to life in the modern-day (even, briefly, touches on that modern of mythologies that comic books are so well known for: the superhero).
MIRRORMASK: Best appreciated AFTER reading some more of Gaiman's works, and after having sat through the aesthetic behind Sony/Jim Henson's The Dark Crystal and Labyrinth. Once you've enjoyed Coraline, you discover some of Gaiman's themes that pop up here, and are so enjoyable. Don't expect Muppets, however (and honestly, that disappointed me).
CORALINE: Very Through the Looking Glass/Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe/Wizard of Oz-lite. A bit like; if Tim Burton were to direct a Pans Labyrinth, rated G. Cute, bizarre, and fun.
AMERICAN GODS: The ending may, or may not fulfill the overall story's epic size (I mean, let's face it, it reaches an almost Ragnarok-level of conflict), but honestly, I don't remember being a bit disappointed by it's finale. It shocked me, at times, and I nearly threw the book away in disgust. Then I'd pick it out of the trash, determined to finish it. Perhaps it's merely due to having read much of the above by this point, but I was thoroughly sucked into Gaiman's unequaled ability to bring the mythological and fanciful into today's world. A taste... Forgotten Route 66-type roadside attractions are the few places in America that hold enough magic to be a proper meeting places for the gods. I love that.
ANASI BOYS: IMO, Even better than American Gods -- and certainly a cleaner read, almost an All Ages book. What can I say, I'm a sucker for discovery and familiarity. It's those two things that make any art enjoyable for me. Humor and horror. Yin and Yang. Discovery, because I wasn't familiar with just how much of American folklore/pop culture, comes from these old African deities. Familiarity, because you'll feel like you've heard of a snippet every here and there, that brings a smile to your face.
I haven't read Stardust yet, and I simply cannot wait for Roger Avary (co-writer, Pulp Fiction) and Neil Gaiman's adaptation of Beowulf, directed by Robert Zemeckis, coming out in theaters. Here's a writer that has an almost endless amount of resources and formats to entertain you.
>>By forcaca (Sunday, 29 Jul 2007 23:57)
Forcaca I totally agree with you on the Sandman. In fact for me, it's the greatest piece of fiction ever created.
I still don't see what's so great about Anansi boys though.
>>By Flagg (Monday, 30 Jul 2007 20:12)
Maybe my opinion was affected by listening to the audiobook version of it, with a wonderful narration that managed to separate the three distinct characters of the father and two brothers (not to mention the bird lady) so well. In the end, American Gods is probably a better book -- but I had more fun with Anansi Boys. I enjoyed the characters trips into the realms of Uncle Remus' collected folk tales, via their original incarnations from Africa.
What's strange for me, however, is that I'm well aware of the fact that, had I not read The Sandman, I probably would not enjoy Gaiman's other works half as much. He seems to have used every trick in his arsenal on that series, and when I see a theme reverberated in his other works (sometimes to a larger effect, and sometimes a far lesser), I get a fond sense of familiarity in said piece. For instance, A Game of You is a wonderful section of the overall Sandman story, but alone I do not feel it's as clean and concise as Coraline, though some similarities do exist. Likewise, I'm more fond of Anansi's character in American Gods and Anansi Boys, than I am of the other two famous tricksters used in The Sandman, oh, too briefly (Puck and Loki).
Anyhoo, that's just my opinion. I agree, The Sandman is one of the greatest works of fiction -- that's why, for me anyway, his other works are like icing on top of that wonderful work.
>>By forcaca (Tuesday, 31 Jul 2007 08:01)
It was Lenny Henry reading the audiobook version wasn't it? I think I read that somewhere.
Yeah I think with American Gods I would have enjoyed it less if I hadn't read Sandman, because through Sandman I was familiar with Odin and Loki as characters. I probably would have enjoyed Sandman more if I had read the Norse sagas.
I do agree with you on everything you say about Anansi Boys, the characters and the world of African folklore. What I didn't like was the humour and the style of the writing. To me it felt shallow compared to American Gods.
And yeah, when I say the Sandman is the best piece of fiction ever, I mean the entire series, not each storyline within it. Like you said, one of the best things about it is the way throughout the series things are happening (like Puck and Loki both being turned loose) that all contribute to the events in the last book. And how Dream was in some way responsible for all of it. The series viewed as a whole is a masterpiece.
>>By Flagg (Tuesday, 31 Jul 2007 22:25)
After reading the Sandman series, I kept on recommending it to a lot of people. I think it was really well-structured. And I got too attached to Morpheus, I cannot have enough of the character. When he died I felt like someone I know also died. My girl was right when she told me that Gaiman makes reall well-developed structure. I made her a fan right after I made her read Coraline.
It is amazing how he can recreate stories from myths and blend it with different cultures. He made an even a more interesting story for Orpheus.
I can't wait to get my hands on The Graveyard Book.
>>By jeeper (Saturday, 2 Aug 2008 19:16)
Me too. Have you read Mike Carey's Lucifer comics? They're good in their own right, but I like them because they sort of carry on the Sandman story.
>>By Flagg (Sunday, 17 Aug 2008 22:55)
Not yet... I am a bit wary to read spinoffs not written by Gaiman. I may take a look at it. How he has written Lucifer. Even liked "Murder Mysteries" from Smokes and Mirrors.
>>By jeeper (Friday, 22 Aug 2008 16:14)
Liked How he has written Lucifer... I mean...
>>By jeeper (Friday, 22 Aug 2008 16:19)
Yeah, I think the Lucifer spinoff had a lot of input from Gaiman too. It is definitely worth reading.
Yeah I loved that story.
>>By Flagg (Saturday, 23 Aug 2008 22:53)
A new movie is being created based on "Coraline." It is being done by the same people who created "Nightmare before Christmas." Gaiman is really gungho for the project since he gave the story to the director before it went on the shelves.
>>By Chazrunner (Monday, 8 Sep 2008 17:46)
Hey that sounds good.
>>By Flagg (Sunday, 28 Sep 2008 03:21)
Coraline is the book that got me into Neil Gaiman. I came across the book on tape in a bargain bin at Amazon, and I loved it so much I bought the actual book. Then I read the Wolves in the Walls, Stardust, and a few months ago I finished Neverwhere, which was a mini-series in the UK (available on Netflix). I am looking forward to the Coraline movie very much. I also plan to read Good Omens, when I have the time.
>>By holeINmySOUL6 (Saturday, 4 Oct 2008 21:37)
The Sandman is his crowning achievement, I highly, highly recommend reading it (in order).
>>By Flagg (Sunday, 5 Oct 2008 03:09)
Oh, also don't miss American Gods.
>>By Flagg (Sunday, 5 Oct 2008 03:10)
Has anyone here read The Graveyard Book? I am dying to read the book, I am unable to find one in my country yet.
>>By jeeper (Friday, 31 Oct 2008 19:07)
The discussion board is currently closed.