Weekly Book Recommendation 6/10/09: Neil Gaiman

A couple years ago, I stumbled upon an author that I’d never heard of, but in such a way that I knew I should know who he was. That is to say, a movie trailer specifically gave his name which happens so rarely with any author short of Stephen King or John Grisham that I was actually surprised by the inclusion (pleasantly surprised as authors get little enough attention in an A.D.D. culture already). After seeing the movie which made me laugh harder than I’d laughed in a long time, I decided to do a little research on this author, after which point I promptly went to the bookstore and purchased four of his titles. What can I say? I was feeling brazen.

The first of the books from this small stack that I read was Neverwhere. I started the book at 5:30 pm. I finished it just after 11 that same night. I knew from page 2 that I hadn’t wasted my money. Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere is deceptively easy to read. The style is suitable for a 5th grader, but the book itself serves as an extended commentary on urban culture and the financial-success-based mentality that has overcome much of the west. The world for people who have fallen between the cracks is both frightening and strangely appealing. And when you’re done reading Neverwhere and are ready for something even more thought-provoking and a little less “fun,” I also highly recommend American Gods, the first book in a long time to cross genres multiple times within its pages, still win a multitude of awards, and perhaps most surprisingly, to have deserved them all.

 

Cross-posted at The Externalist Blog.

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