Wednesday's Inspiring Book

OK, I cheated a bit last time, and bigged up a book I hadn't read. Well, enough of that. Today's inspiring book is a real winner.

American Gods, by Neil Gaiman.

British covers till I die. Word.
I came to Gaiman later in life than I should have. In fact, I didn't know any of his stuff when I first met my girlfriend / fiance / wife, and that became a talking point. From her descriptions he sounded made-up, with his artistic friends and bohemian-cum-literary lifestyle. He'd make a good, if slightly unbelievable, character in a children's book, for sure.

Still, a writer she liked was a writer I would like, and so I went forth, adventuring.

American Gods is probably well-known to you all. I'm not going for originality here, or piercing literary insight. This 'Inspiring' series is supposed to be books that led me to where I am today. It's a personal thing. And American Gods certainly counts Not just because of the connection to my wife. Not just because I read it while I was living in Japan, and now every reread is infused with everything I had over there. It's simply an amazing book, and Gaiman's use of language, and his breezy, casual, natural way of telling stories, of creating characters whose dialogue is just as much a part of them as their description, is something I admire hugely.

We write in very, very different styles, on different topics, but that doesn't mean I can't steal from him, magpie-like, and hope that I can pick the nicest, shiniest bits I find and work them into my own nest / book / whatever fitting metaphor you like. His Coraline is much more in-line with my EREN, and I would love - love - to see them side by side one day.

Maybe if EREN does get out there, I'll line up all the books from this series, and take a photo. It'll be a big ol' literary journey. That'd be fun, eh? (Well, it would be for me, you meanies)

Go, read! Report back. Read some more.


  1. I haven't read enough Neil Gaiman and not this one. Only read Anansi Boys, Coraline and Good Omens. This one can go on my must-read books list on my blog...

  2. Stardust is shorter, and a great story - I'd certainly recommend that one