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One of fiction's most audaciously original talents, Neil Gaiman now gives us a mythology for a modern age -- complete with dark prophecy, family dysfunction, mystical deceptions, and killer birds. Not to mention a lime.

Anansi Boys
God is dead. Meet the kids.

When Fat Charlie's dad named something, it stuck. Like calling Fat Charlie "Fat Charlie." Even now, twenty years later, Charlie Nancy can't shake that name, one of the many embarrassing "gifts" his father bestowed -- before he dropped dead on a karaoke stage and ruined Fat Charlie's life.

Mr. Nancy left Fat Charlie things. Things like the tall, good-looking stranger who appears on Charlie's doorstep, who appears to be the brother he never knew. A brother as different from Charlie as night is from day, a brother who's going to show Charlie how to lighten up and have a little fun ... just like Dear Old Dad. And all of a sudden, life starts getting very interesting for Fat Charlie.

Because, you see, Charlie's dad wasn't just any dad. He was Anansi, a trickster god, the spider-god. Anansi is the spirit of rebellion, able to overturn the social order, create wealth out of thin air, and baffle the devil. Some said he could cheat even Death himself.

Returning to the territory he so brilliantly explored in his masterful New York Times bestseller, American Gods, the incomparable Neil Gaiman offers up a work of dazzling ingenuity, a kaleidoscopic journey deep into myth that is at once startling, terrifying, exhilarating, and fiercely funny -- a true wonder of a novel that confirms Stephen King's glowing assessment of the author as "a treasure-house of story, and we are lucky to have him."

Topics: Mythology, Magic, Brothers, Supernatural Powers, Gods & Goddesses, Race Relations, Adventurous, Funny, Magical Realism, England, Florida, Speculative Fiction, and Series

Published: HarperCollins on Oct 13, 2009
ISBN: 9780061794971
List price: $7.99
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this was a good book. the pacing of the book was a little wierd, it alternated from being really fast to really slow. the charachters were hit and miss. but it is entertaining, and some of the stuff in the book was very funny.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Audio Book. A modern fairy tale about two sons of Anansi who must reconcile their differences to face the common threat. The story is more non-fantasy as it focuses on character interaction and family relationships, although Gaiman does a great job of weaving the supernatural in. Overall I was a little dissapointed and expected more innovation from the unique concept. Gaiman also has some very clever wordings, but several characters seemed like mere plot devices. The reader was good, although it can get tiresome to listen to many takes on black British voices. As a previous reviewer notes, if you enjoy this book, definitely check out Christopher Moore. I have the same opinion that Moore is better at this style by far.read more
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Interesting and funny. Highly enjoyableread more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
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Reviews

this was a good book. the pacing of the book was a little wierd, it alternated from being really fast to really slow. the charachters were hit and miss. but it is entertaining, and some of the stuff in the book was very funny.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Audio Book. A modern fairy tale about two sons of Anansi who must reconcile their differences to face the common threat. The story is more non-fantasy as it focuses on character interaction and family relationships, although Gaiman does a great job of weaving the supernatural in. Overall I was a little dissapointed and expected more innovation from the unique concept. Gaiman also has some very clever wordings, but several characters seemed like mere plot devices. The reader was good, although it can get tiresome to listen to many takes on black British voices. As a previous reviewer notes, if you enjoy this book, definitely check out Christopher Moore. I have the same opinion that Moore is better at this style by far.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Interesting and funny. Highly enjoyable
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
I liked American Gods more, and I felt that this book dragged a bit.BUT, it was worth reading...
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Kept waiting for it to turn into a sequel to American Gods, but it never did. Which left me disappointed. Probably would have liked it better had I realized that going in.Oh well.
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As I was reading Neil Gaiman's Anansi Boys, I was inspired to write a few blogs in advance, something that hasn't happened before (at least not merely from reading a book--I've had several "genius" blog ideas in advance, some of which have made it live). And since I wasn't sure how long I was going to take to finish the novel, I jotted them down elsewhere and waited to see if they still had merit. I think they do. Here's the first of three installments, this one from when I was still in the first third of the book. Part II like my commas. I like them fluttering about the text, adding on little bits of information, inserting asides, tucking away last-minute thoughts into otherwise rather rambling sentences. When I edit, whether it's self editing as I write or editing a novel, a blog, or sometimes even an email, most of what I do is straighten sentences out, organize them, do the literary equivalent of straightening the tie against the collar of my sentences, if that makes sense to anyone but me. Neil Gaiman's Anansi Boys is not doing me any favors either. If ever there were a novel written for lovers of commas and the interjections of rambling side-thoughts of a character scattered amidst the factual information being delivered by a sentence, this is the book. (Having never read another Gaiman novel before, I can't say if they're all like this. I have a feeling they're not, since the style so aptly fits the character.) Part II I can't decide if I like Neil Gaiman's style or not. Okay, that's not accurate. I like his style. It fits the character. What I really don't like is the main character. Fat Charlie is so weak, there is nothing to root for. Every chance he gets to redeem himself, to fight back, to take a stand, he wimps out. It's not a trait I like in a person or a character. I like to read books about characters I like, not characters I like to hate. I spend a lot of time with each book (especially now that I'm trying to slow down and study them a little, per Prose's comments). So reading about a character that I just plain don't like is like inviting people that I don't like to dinner. All the fun things, all the shared conversations, are drained dry, sucked of fun. It's not something I would do to myself in real life. And yet… Yet, I argued with myself every time I thought, "Let's just skim ahead and find out what happens, put this book aside, and go back to enjoying the rest of the books on my shelves." I couldn't make myself do it. I want to continue to read, if only, I decided, for one simple reason: Gaiman has no qualms about making his characters miserable. Not just making their lives miserable and yet having them buoyed by some inner strengths through the rough times. Nope. Not Gaiman. He leaves Fat Charlie to suffer, and suffer, and just when it couldn't—shouldn't—get worse, Gaiman adds a little more to Fat Charlie's load. As an author who cringes when putting my favorite characters through tough ordeals, it's a good lesson for me to watch a master perform. Books without conflicts are dull. Characters who have it easy are no fun. I understand this, but try spending a month or two with a person, and during that time wishing them ill will at every turn. It's hard. So I continued. Will I read another Gaiman novel? Not for a long time, if ever. Am I glad I did. Yes. Frustratingly, yes. Part III (This is from a few days after I finished the book, about ten days after I wrote Part II.) Did I like Anansi Boys when it’s all said and done? The fact that I’m still talking about it says a lot. Yes, I ended up liking it. I liked the character growth. Fat Charlie grew on me, as he was supposed to. I liked the fantastical elements interwoven. I liked that it got me out of my comfort zone. (I say this, having finished it and now being back within my comfort zone.) Am I ready to rush out an buy another Neil Gaiman book? Definitely not. Will I ever? Yes. Reading this book made it hard for me to find the next book to read. For me, that’s a good sign. It means I was so in an author’s world that I’m not ready to leave it.
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