Days before his release from prison, Shadow’s wife, Laura, dies in a mysterious car crash. Numbly, he makes his way back home. On the plane, he encounters the enigmatic Mr Wednesday, who claims to be a refugee from a distant war, a former god and the king of America.
Together they embark on a profoundly strange journey across the heart of the USA, whilst all around them a storm of preternatural and epic proportions threatens to break.
This is a reread. I had actually intended to reread Gaiman & Pratchett’s Good Omens but couldn’t find my copy. It’s probably in the attic in Sligo somewhere. But I saw this on the shelves, and had been intending to reread it before the TV show airs.
It’s just as good as I remember it being, if anything it is better. Shadow is a great central character. A lot of the book is him just going along with the other characters, or just doing things to be doing something. He’s an easy going guy, for the most part, but that doesn’t mean he does have his own arc and reasons and motivations. His world sort of fell apart when he learned that Laura was dead. Not to mention when he learned about her actions before her death. He has a lot to process.
It’d be a great book to inspire a road-trip of the states I think. As I was reading I was thinking how awesome it’d be great to visit at least some of those roadside attractions.
But the book isn’t just about weird tourist traps, it is about guilt and redemption, belief and gods and magic. Death and life. About sacrifice and love. All wrapped up in a great story.