I am a mythology lover. I find the folklore stories of religions and societies long gone fascinating. So I enjoyed "American Gods" for bringing those old mythological gods back to the forefront. Gaiman brought in a plethora of mythologies and had all these gods interacting with one another in a fascinating power struggle, showing what would become of these beings, brought to America from immigrants coming to the country, once those who had initially brought them into this new world, no longer believed in them. These gods don't just disappear, they linger and finds ways to survive in a world that does not know or care for their existence.
That element of it is fascinating and extremely well done, with Shadow playing the ignorant puppet to Wednesday (Odin's) grand schemes the entire time. What I loved most was the con that Odin plays on not just his old god "friends" but the new American gods (like Media) as well. It was a very "Ocean's 11" moment and it was set up from the very beginning and the pay off at the end was spot on.
Beyond that... the story has issues. The entire time I was expecting more of Shadow, I thought he was an old god himself only to find out that, that's not really true. He's the son of one. Cool but I didn't buy it. Especially since he was so grounded in Native American symbolism that his lineage fell flat at the end. I also wanted more from the "new" American gods. Beyond Media and Technology, I never got a good sense of who they were. Ultimately, it was elements like this that lead me to give it a 4 of 5 stars.
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