American Gods - Neil Gaiman | Book Review

Friday, 27 October 2017

Rating: 4/5


'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'


Firstly, the only reason I haven't given this book a 5/5 rating is that it just took me so long to actually finish the darn thing, of which all of the blame I put on myself.

So, American Gods... where to start.

If you're a regular visitor to my blog, you'll know that I absolutely love sci-fi/fantasy anything, so when I saw American Gods on my local bookshop's shelf, I knew it had to be read. I've read a few of Neil Gaiman's books before, but they were all in the children's' or young-adults section of the bookshop, so when I stumbled across American Gods in the Sci-Fi/Fantasy section, I was intrigued.

American Gods tells the tale of a man named Shadow Moon who has just been released from prison when his wife dies in a car accident (this is honestly no spoiler, it happens a few pages in). His journey in this seemingly new world that he hasn't been a part of for three years sees him meet the mysterious Mr Wednesday, who hires him as an 'errand boy'. From then on we encounter all sorts of gods and deities from all different cultures. I think that's one of the things that I really enjoyed most out of this book; the vast cultural scape that Gaiman covers in regards to Gods.

Another thing that I also really enjoyed was seemingly unnecessary storylines turning into something completely far from what I expected (in the best way possible!). There were a few characters storylines that I thought were going nowhere or felt like they weren't really needed. This was, of course, a huge mistake and I have no idea why I even doubted Gaiman's writing for even a second.; one characters motives/arc I didn't even see coming! It wasn't until Shadow pieced everything together that I even had an inkling as to what was going on.

But one of the things that I took most away from reading American gods was that of the struggle between the old gods and the new ('new' being 'technology' and 'media', etc), which I thought was a very true reflection of what is happening in our world today. We almost worship the screen in our hands and can't bear to be parted with it. Although this book was first published in 2001, it tells a story that is very relevant to how we all live today.

Overall, this was a brilliant book and it certainly took me on an adventure throughout North American and time itself.

I wouldn't recommend this book to anyone under the age of 18 as it has some strong sexual scenes, and swearing is on almost every page.

This book would be great for anyone who has enjoyed Gaiman's previous works, and anyone who enjoys a thought-provoking book.

I hope you have enjoyed the review! Let me know what you thought of American Gods in the comments below!

Love, K :)

Witchy Happenings

Friday, 13 October 2017

For so long I have always wanted to do a Witch/Halloween inspired photoshoot/series of images. So the other day I decided to go out with my sister and take some test images to see if we could achieve what we wanted, and I am so pleased with the results!



I had seen a few pins on Pinterest that really sparked my imagination for inspiration for the series, some of which included levitation. This was something I had always wanted to try, and I saw this as my opportunity to really stretch my technical editing side. I can't wait to make more images that have the same sort of spooky, modern day witch vibe. I might base the photo series on the 'Seven Wonders' posed in the American Horror Story series 'Coven'. Seven magical abilities a young witch has to undergo to unveil if she is the Supreme. 



Those seven 'wonders' are, Telekinesis; the ability to manipulate objects with the power of the mind, Concilium; the ability to impose one's will onto another, allowing it to control many parts of the mind (such as actions, thoughts, memories, etc), more commonly known as Coercion and Mind Control, Pyrokinesis; the ability to create, control and manipulate fire with the power of the mind, Divination; the ability to obtain direct knowledge about an object, person, location or physical event through means other than the user's physical senses. This can be activated by just being around a person, focusing on specific tasks, searching for information, and touching objects, Transmutation; the ability to move instantaneously from one location to another without physically occupying the space in between, also known as Teleportation, Vitalum Vitalis; the ability to balance the scales between one life force and another. Witches can transfer their own life force to nearly dead people in order to heal them and can even resurrect the dead. Commonly seen side-effects are fainting and dizziness due to the strain. Can also be used to drain life force as well, and finally, Descensum; the ability to descend into the netherworlds of the afterlife. Witches are able to project themselves directly into hell, which takes the form of their worst fears.


So that's a lot to work with! I really hope to make something out of this as I am really interested where this could take me creatively! Hopefully, you'll see some awesome images very soon, just in time for Halloween!

If anyone would like a tutorial about how I made these images, just let me know and I'll put together another blog post with loads of details.

Love, K :)

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