Sunday, January 04, 2009
When this book first came out, back in 2005, I bought it immediately because I thought American Gods was brilliant and I was so excited there was a sequel (only it's not really a sequel...you could very easily read these books independent of each other). Then I never got around to reading it and it sat, unread, on the bookcase for three years. Three years! I know, I know. How could I?
But then The Graveyard Book and came out I renewed my infatuation with Gaiman. So Anansi Boys started calling my name, and this time I listened.
Charles "Fat Charlie" Nancy is the son of a god. Not that he knows that. Fat Charlie has always been embarrassed by his flamboyant, prankster father. So embarrassed that he moved to England to avoid him. However, when Mr. Nancy dies, Fat Charlie returns to Florida for the funeral. While there, he learns of the possible existence of a brother he never knew (or maybe just forgot) he had. Supposedly, if he wants to see this mysterious brother, all he has to do is tell a spider. Yeah right, thinks Fat Charlie, and he returns to London.
Only thing is, Fat Charlie does pass the message along to a spider, and before you know it, the mysterious brother, Spider, has appeared and taken over Fat Charlie's life. Havoc ensues. Fat Charlie learns a few things about life and his father and himself. Spider learns a few things, too. Everyone lives happily ever after. The end.
Obviously, being a Gaiman book, there's much more too it than that. It's got humor, and woo-woo stuff, and the backing of a great imagination. I'd have a hard time not liking anything Gaiman. But it's not my favorite. I think American Gods will always remain my favorite, simply because it's the first of Gaiman's books that I ever read, and I was floored by the world he created. Anansi Boys is set in that same magical world, but it lacked a certain sumthin' sumthin'.