‘This is a land of dreams and fire’, said the flame.
For American Gods by Neil Gaiman deals with not only a land of surreal dreams, imagination and deja-vu but breathing fire, myths and avatars. Published in 2001, this is a different twist within fantasy writing which blends in literary devices, a stable writing style and lyricism evident in the text throughout.
Perhaps the most fantastic part of Gaiman’s writing is the fact that he lets the audience breathe in through a variety of different sentiments which spell out nothing but wonder. We continuously marvel, amaze, apprehend, think and think some more while reading his work unlike a lot of contemporary fiction around, which tells us how to feel such as being happy when two characters find their happy ending, shedding tears when one of our favorites gives into some horrendous disease or other commonly felt emotions in mainstream fiction. Gaiman keeps modern fantasy true for there is bewilderment, wonder and terror alive in every other page however readers might have to show some patience till at least the first half of the book for it can have a few fillers.
Shadow is the protagonist in American Gods who has a troubled past. Upon release from prison he is taken in by Mr. Wednesday for spooky jobs, all reeking of mystery, illegitimacy and fishiness. In actuality, here is a battle between the gods of the old, who have waned since only a few true believers are left. Wednesday who himself has a shady past, wants a storm against the new gods of today which have engulfed every individual via technology, media and modern day celebrity culture. As a result, American Gods is a prose infusing a very strong writing quality, stories in between the main plot, sub plots and everything blending into the America it talks about. For America is truly one big land filled with tradition, wonder and trepidation-that is whatever comes your way.
‘You just have to hold it in your mind and it is yours to take from. The sun’s treasure. It is there in those moments when the world makes a rainbow. It’s there in the moment of the eclipse and the moment of the storm’.