Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman

Anansi Boys for me can best be described as Gaiman's latest attempt to write a novel-length comedy and achieves mediocre success at best. It's not his first attempt to do so as he did an excellent collaboration with Terry Pratchett on Good Omens, but the comedy of this book seems like Terry Pratchett's style (minus the footnotes) with less of a bang. That's not to say that there aren't funny parts, but they're rather low-key and not the laugh-out-loud type. Thankfully, Gaiman is nonetheless a good writer, period, which is why Anansi Boys isn't simply a punchline type of book. The plot is interesting, and more so the characters. Drawing from African folk lore, among other sources, Anansi Boys has just that right mix of mythical and modernity plus shreds of pop culture and literature (K, anyone?) references. Overall not a bad book but it's also far from Gaiman's best work.

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