American Gods

4 books in series
4.5 out of 5 stars 2,914 ratings

Summary

Old gods and new walk the streets of America—and clash, over and over again, in a series filled with action, intrigue, and drama, about powerful beings made manifest by belief. 

The old gods lose power as they lose followers, giving rise to new gods in American life—gods inspired by the things everyday Americans “worship,” such as the media, technology, and conspiracy theories. Ex-convict Shadow is caught up in this meeting and ongoing clash of worlds as he works for Mr. Wednesday, a new manifestation of the Norse god Odin. When Shadow inadvertently brings his dead wife, Laura, back into a state of semi-life, she rescues him from the shadowy Men in Black who work as muscle for the new gods. Shadow and Laura are pursued relentlessly by the Men in Black, led by Mr. World. The path they tread gets increasingly dangerous and bloody as Shadow begins to uncover the twisting threads of a plot that has him caught right in the middle. Delve into more mythology-inspired tales in the following audiobooks, some following Shadow, others featuring new characters altogether.

American Gods, the debut novel, offers several narrator options for listeners, from a full cast that brings the unique characters roaring to life to the singular Audie Award-winning narrator George Guidall, who expertly ties the complicated plot together. Narrators of successive installments include the author, Neil Gaiman, along with accredited actors such as Ron McLarty, Daniel Oreskes, Sarah Jones, and Lenny Henry.

In his portrayal of the old gods, Gaiman takes inspiration from the mythologies of several cultures, including Norse, West African, Irish, and Egyptian. The new gods serve as a commentary on American society and the often mundane things we elevate to godlike status. The author’s concept was to create a view of America that is at once utterly alien and eerily familiar.

American Gods is an award winner several times over, claiming the Hugo Award for Best SF/Fantasy Novel, Bram Stoker Award for Best Horror Novel, Locus Award for Best Fantasy Novel, and Nebula Award for Best Novel. Book two, Anansi Boys, won a Locus Award and praise from Publishers Weekly for its “gleeful, hurtling prose.” In 2017, the Starz network launched American Gods, a fantasy drama television series inspired by the novel, with Neil Gaiman serving as an executive producer. 

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