This has been my filler book for the past two months.
In case you are wondering what a filler book is, wonder no more! It is a book used to fill the reading space between the books on your regular reading list.
Consider the scenario where you left the book you are currently reading in the hall but you are stuck in the bedroom. You cannot let this little spatial handicap put you out of the company of a book. Or maybe, your current book has become too dramatic (or mushy or put-downable) that you crave some release – bang comes the filler book to your rescue.
** Spoiler alert applies as usual. Read at your own peril **
I am a sucker for this genre (Tom Holt anyone?) but somehow, it did not work for me. I wanted to like this book, I really really did. But, in the end, it left me feeling meh. I am to blame though. I refused to learn from my previous experience (with Good Omens, which I have officially moved to my Limbo shelf. Even Sir Terry couldn’t redeem that book. Sigh!)
Nothing seems to happen till the book reaches the midway point, when suddenly a lot happen over a very short interval. So, here I am, telling myself, ‘Well, well, the story has finally taken off’, when the carpet is pulled from under my feet and everything stalls again! This was disappointing to say the least.
Mind you, I am very forgiving of unanswered questions but this book had so many that it felt more like I had appeared for my Maths exam after spending the whole night cramming up my geography texts. Maybe the author deals with them in a sequel (I personally don’t have much faith in this seeing how the sequel is about the sons of Anansi).
- I don’t know if I like or hate Shadow. Painfully little is told about his past to understand any of his present decisions. (Now that i come to think of it, not much is told about any of the characters’ pasts). No explanation is given as to why everybody and his uncle is trying to do away with Shadow.
- Even less is told about why exactly Shadow decides that he would be faithful to Wednesday after about two minutes of meeting him!
- Did Wednesday and his ilk have a hand in the death of Laura?
- Why was Bilquis introduced? And why was she killed?
- Low Key Lyesmith – Seriously??????????
- What’s with Wood and Road and Town and World?
- What is the significance of the Gold/Sun coin (or the Moon coin). And how do you just ‘take it’?
- Buffalo Man, Sam Crow, Eagle stone, Thunder bird – the questions are never ending!
- Even I was able to guess that you can’t just kill a God like that, especially a powerful one like Mr. Wednesday. That he has enough power to influence a war means that enough people believe in him, which in turn means that he cannot be obliterated with a bullet. But Loki confirms that Wednesday did die physically but hints about a reincarnation.
These are just off the top of my head and I’m sure there will be plenty more if I sit down and thought about it. But, I’ve decided not to waste any more time on this book.
Next book (wherever you are), ready or not, here I come!
Parting advice – if you do decide to read this book, I’d recommend you have an internet connection (or an encyclopaedia) close at hand to cross reference all the myriad mythological references it throws at you without bothering for an explanation.
PS – I should add a note here saying that this post is a reminder to myself of what kind of misery this book put me through. I can clearly see myself in the not too distant future, picking up Anansi Boys (or Neverwhere or one of those other books) due to sheer temptation. And when that time comes, I will re-read this post, kick myself and pick up something else.
PPS – I am well aware that I haven’t reviewed Origin yet. I am unable to bring myself to draft a review because, honestly, it is too distressing. To think that Dan Brown and Professor Langdon let me down, oh the agony!