Sunday, January 08, 2006

book 5: Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman

Holy shit, my jaw hurts.
Okay, so here's the story. I read Neverwhere last year (after hearing a bunch of you internet people wet yourself over it) and was sorely disappointed, so disappointed that I wrote it down (see comments). Good luck Anita!
Anyway, I went to the library on Saturday and saw Anansi's Boys on the new books shelf. I thought, God, I feel like shit. This will at least be diverting, and if it is stupid too, like Neverwhere, I can tear it apart on my blog. Tearing things apart always makes me feel better.

So I got it and read it in about 4 hours.

It was good, not great, not bad. Gaiman's main character is still annoyingly Arthur Dent-esque- the fumbling, boring everyman with a heart of gold- and his fate seems a little silly. The other characters are a little more original, but not much. Anansi's Boys is about what happens when the old gods have kids in the new world. There are witches and curses and seances. There is love, a murder and a trip to St. Andrews. And, because this is Neil Gaiman, everything is presented with an ineffable cheeriness, even the nasty parts. That's what hard about his novels- they are inventive, but you know how everything is going to turn out. Even so, it was fun to read, but I should have saved it for the airplane.

That was not the best review, I know. I blame my teeth and the fact that I can't turn up Sparks: Kimono My House as loud as it needs to be.


doris day said...

you should give Good Omens a try... co-written by Gaiman and Terry Pratchett.... funny stuff

Carrie said...

I heard that was good. I saw a shitty paperback copy of it in a used bookstore in London a few moths ago, but I didn't buy it because of the bad bad bad dollar and its weakness against the pound. Now I kind of regret that.

Carrie said...

Any other suggestions, doris? More sci-fi would be nice...

Mike said...

Neil Gaiman is my favorite author I can't stand reading. I visit his blog occasionally when I'm bored at work, and always find him very pleasant and likable; however, his novel writing? Not so much.

Granted, I'm not a big fan of much speculative fiction. I just can't get that worked up about elves and parallel universes. But for Gaiman in particular, I just don't feel like he's got any follow-through. He can't end a novel at all. I read both Neverwhere and American Gods and both left me pretty cold and frustrated as a reader. (Especially AG, where we spent a large chunk of the book getting ready for this huge battle, only to have that battle not happen.)

I'm also not much for Terry Pratchett. He's too much Monty Python humor for me -- and I can't stand Monty Python humor.

Carrie said...

That's funny; I love Monty Python, I love Douglas Adams, but I hate most things that emulate them.

I guess I'm just an originality-slut. I only want to give it up for the oldsters...

Re: Gaiman- I also love him. I love his floppy hair, I love his comics. His books are crap. Thanks for commenting Mike- I'll ignore the totally ignant elves commment.