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Anansi Boysby Neil Gaiman
Synopses & Reviews
Fat Charlie Nancy's normal life ended the moment his father dropped dead on a Florida karaoke stage. Charlie didn't know his dad was a god. And he never knew he had a brother.
Now brother Spider's on his doorstep — about to make Fat Charlie's life more interesting...and a lot more dangerous.
"If readers found the Sandman series creator's last novel, American Gods, hard to classify, they will be equally nonplussed — and equally entertained — by this brilliant mingling of the mundane and the fantastic. 'Fat Charlie' Nancy leads a life of comfortable workaholism in London, with a stressful agenting job he doesn't much like, and a pleasant fiance, Rosie. When Charlie learns of the death of his estranged father in Florida, he attends the funeral and learns two facts that turn his well-ordered existence upside-down: that his father was a human form of Anansi, the African trickster god, and that he has a brother, Spider, who has inherited some of their father's godlike abilities. Spider comes to visit Charlie and gets him fired from his job, steals his fiance, and is instrumental in having him arrested for embezzlement and suspected of murder. When Charlie resorts to magic to get rid of Spider, who's selfish and unthinking rather than evil, things begin to go very badly for just about everyone. Other characters — including Charlie's malevolent boss, Grahame Coats ('an albino ferret in an expensive suit'), witches, police and some of the folk from American Gods — are expertly woven into Gaiman's rich myth, which plays off the African folk tales in which Anansi stars. But it's Gaiman's focus on Charlie and Charlie's attempts to return to normalcy that make the story so winning — along with gleeful, hurtling prose. Agent, Merrilee Heifetz of Writers House. 16-city author tour. (On sale Sept. 20)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"The result, though less dazzling than American Gods, is even more moving. Intermittently lumpy and self-indulgent, but enormously entertaining throughout. And the Gaiman faithful...will devour it gratefully." Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)
"[A] romantic screwball comedy seasoned with murder, magic, and ghosts....[Gaiman is] the folksy, witty, foolishly wise narrator to perfection, drawing us into the web he weaves as skillfully as any...spider." Booklist (Starred Review)
"[A]pparently, there isn't much Neil Gaiman can't do. Anansi Boys is one of the finest screwball comedies to come along since To Say Nothing of the Dog by Connie Willis....[A] remarkable and entertaining book." Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
"A fun book with a little of everything — horror, mystery, magic, comedy, song, romance, ghosts, scary birds, ancient grudges, and trademark British wit....Another lovely story as only Gaiman can tell it; necessary and recommended." Library Journal
"With Anansi Boys, Neil Gaiman's delightful, funny and affecting new novel, the bestselling author has scored the literary equivalent of a hole in one, employing the kind of self-assured storytelling that makes it all look so easy." Elizabeth Hand, The Washington Post
"Set in a dreamlike world of reality and circumstance, Anansi Boys belies Gaiman's admonitions. No, it is not big, and it may not even be serious, but it is laugh-out-loud funny and scary as a spider on your arm." USA Today
"The genre-busting novel is very creative and very funny, two Gaiman specialties. Its sweep is less epic than American Gods, but it works well on its own terms. (Grade: A-)" Christian Science Monitor
"Gaiman is witty and engaging, but his power is more as a storyteller than as a stylist, and I think what his fans find so appealing about his stories is that they are comforting, no matter how scary, like a good bedtime tale." Minneapolis Star Tribune
"[F]unny and subversive, a comedy of ill-mannered gods and bad-hearted mortals....Gaiman's mastery of language carries the reader through to a satisfying conclusion." USA Today
"[A] giddy but somewhat unsatisfying ride. Whenever Gaiman runs into a narrative jam, he veers off in an exhilarating new direction, a diversionary tactic that starts to feel like a cheat. (Grade: B-)" Entertainment Weekly
"[Q]uite inventive, if not revolutionary....I found [it] immensely fun to read, very clever and sharp....
"With its quirky, inventive fantasy, this is a real treat for Gaiman's fans....Darkly funny and heartwarming to the end, this book is an addictive read not easily forgotten." School Library Journal
One of fiction's most audaciously original talents, Neil Gaiman now gives us a mythology for a modern age — complete with dark prophecy, family dysfunction, mystical deceptions, and killer birds. Not to mention a lime.
Charlie's dad wasn't just any dad. He was Anansi, a trickster god, the spirit of rebellion able to overturn the social order, create wealth out of thin air, and baffle the devil. When he dies on a karaoke stage, things get very interesting for Charlie.
About the Author
Neil Gaiman is the critically acclaimed, award-wining creator of the Sandman series of graphic novels; author of the novels American Gods, Stardust, Neverwhere, and Coraline; the short fiction collections Smoke and Mirrors and the upcoming Fragile Things; and the bestselling children's books The Day I Swapped My Dad for Two Goldfish and The Wolves in the Walls.
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