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Gaiman's Back in Book Stores

Read what one of today's most imaginative writers has to say about his epic exploration of the soul of America

By ERIC MORO     June 19, 2001

AMERICAN GODS by Neil Gaiman
© 2001 HarperCollins

Once again, author, screenwriter and comic book scribe Neil Gaiman tackles the seedy underworld of contemporary America. However, this time he does so through the pages of his latest novel AMERICAN GODS. Perhaps best known for his award-winning DC Comics' title SANDMAN, the British-born writer has crafted a novel described as mythic in dimension and heroic in spirit.

The story focuses on Shadow, who, after just being released from a three-year prison term, discovers that his wife, Laura, has been killed in a car crash. On the way to her funeral, he meets an unusual businessman who offers him a vague yet enticing job. No sooner does Shadow accept the assignment than he finds himself swept into a journey through the heart of the country a trip that takes him to places strange yet familiar, and where he meets people as weird, welcoming, and threatening as America itself.

In an interview last year with our correspondent Steve Fritz, Gaiman said that his latest novel 'is almost like a Rolling Stones record: it's very street level and blue collar. It is also very spooky.' He added, "There's a murder mystery. It's a crime story. It's a war story. It's a short story collection. It's mythic. It's all of those kinds of things. After living in America for seven years I thought it would be interesting to write about things I liked and things I didn't like. I wouldn't say that religion is the central theme, but gods are."

While the novel itself will be available in bookstores on June 19, a cyber-version of AMERICAN GODS as well as STARDUST, SMOKE AND MIRRORS, and Gaiman's first novel NEVERWHERE will be published by PerfectBound (the e-book imprint of HarperCollins) on July 3. The e-books will be available in Gemstar, MS Reader, and Adobe EBR formats.

[Click the related article below to read the rest of Neil Gaiman's comments regarding AMERICAN GODS.]


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