American Gods, by Neil Gaiman, is one of the best stories I have ever encountered. I once read it, oh, must have been two to three years ago. Then I bought it from Chapters last week on a whim, even though I barely remembered the plot. When it arrived and I picked it up and started to read, I instantly felt better. Just being able to sink into the universe that Gaiman creates with his words.
The tale is compelling, and it blows my mind. Very few books do that for me--I enjoy most of the books that I read. Some of them I find hard to put down (lately, for example, I have been reading some Jennifer Fallon. She is no Gaiman, but I still hurry to reach the end of her books). But my memory isn't that great, and they slowly slip away. Dune, Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, American Gods ... these books resonate and impart something to me that transcends that. It's why books are so great.
I'm going to try and read my entire novel in one sitting now. I finished the second draft a few days ago, and I have found a title. Now comes time for a final look, a gentle dust and polish, before sending it once again to people who say they'll read it even if they never do. :r Maybe someone will read it this time. Hopefully.
Anyway, I just wanted to point out American Gods to you if you haven't read it already. Mind blowing. Read it. That is all. :)