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American Angst [Kindle Edition]

Laurel Osterkamp
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Intimate, snarky, and completely relatable, American Angst is about two women grappling with love and pregnancy, sex and careers —while attempting self-discovery in a crazy world.
Lucy needs to save her family. Robin needs to save herself. These tightly interwoven stories chart their growth as they make their way through Thanksgiving dinners, bad breakups, celebrity scandals and political campaigns. For laughter through tears, don’t miss American Angst, whether you’re new to these characters or you think of them as old friends.
(Included in this collection are Lucy’s posts about the 2012 election, which were originally seen on her liberal blog, There’s new, additional material! Spoiler: Obama still wins.)
Bonus: This edition includes an excerpt from The Holdout

Editorial Reviews


Praise for other works by Laurel Osterkamp - 
The Holdout:
"Compelling entertainment, like an episode of reality TV." - Kirkus Reviews
"Well-written and smart!" - San Francisco Book Review
"A fun, hard-to-put-down read, and fans of chick lit will definitely enjoy it!" - Indie Reader
Starring in the Movie of My Life:
"A riveting romance and drama. Highly recommended."  -Midwest Book Review
"Two stories collide in this novel that deals with acceptance, love and revenge."  -4-Star RT Rating
* Award Winning Finalist, Indie Excellence Awards and International Book Awards
Following My Toes:
 "A wonderful story of learning to forgive yourself and others, trusting your instincts and not giving up... a great read." - Muse Book Reviews
*Winner! Indie Excellence Awards(chick lit category)
Scared Together:
*Short-listed for the Sophie King fiction prize.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1194 KB
  • Print Length: 150 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: PMI Books (May 12, 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #199,439 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars The Perfect Summer read, A Unique American Story June 21, 2014
By Saved
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I couldn’t help myself, I had to read American Angst by Laurel Osterkamp, a story about two cousins-in-law, Lucy and Robin Bricker. I’d met them before—I’d read and loved The Holdout, Starring in the Movie of My Life, and Blue State—so I was looking forward to hearing more from them. I knew I wouldn’t be disappointed, and I was right. The story is an intrigue, a perfect summer read, a romp and dig, a surprise through the lives of two cousins-in-law and their significant others.

The structure is pure Osterkamp, each chapter weaving Lucy’s story and POV with Robin’s. Although at one point the characters meet in a believable and humorous situation, most of the time the chapters concern either Robin or Lucy. In addition to the structure, what I love about the book are syntax, plot, its unique American flavor, and above all, the way Laurel Osterkamp’s characters grow—or not.

American Angst is an unputdownable read. It’s about young adults who grow and slip, who love and suffer, who are together in their being part of—and apart from—the same generation in the same family. It’s about married Lucy and single Robin. It’s about the push and pull of family, the impact of public events on private lives. If you love drama and humor, surprise and sorrow, you won’t want to miss American Angst.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Read it, you'll like it. June 16, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Sharing the lives of the two women in American Angst feels like spending a weekend with good friends. It’s great conversation, memorable stories, a little drama, some tears, and a whole lot of fun. I read American Angst expecting a lively read with compelling and interesting characters, and I wasn’t disappointed. Osterkamp delivers another character-rich story of two women trying to discover and use their strengths to help themselves and their families. There are plenty of surprises along the way, and a consistent page-turning anticipation leading to a satisfying conclusion. I thoroughly enjoy getting to know all these characters whose lives are so intertwined. If you like chick-lit that's a cut above the rest, you'll love this book. American Angst demonstrates Osterkamp’s continued development as a novelist, and I look forward to her next book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Skillful prose June 13, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
Sometimes, books in the humor or satire genre can be a bit of a hit-and-miss with readers--especially if the writer is trying too hard to be funny and jokes fall flat. I am sometimes also wary of glittery descriptions because I prefer substance to hype.

At the time of this posting, the product description for this book mentions that the book is "intimate, snarky, and completely relatable." As I read the book, I was glad to be reminded of these adjectives in the product description--I was NOT disappointed as a reader and didn't feel misled or that the description was unwarranted.

Topics like marriage, sex and pregnancy can be tiresome to wade through (depending on a reader's individual tastes and preferences). What I liked the most was the fresh vibe of Ms. Osterkamp's writing style, combined with an original prose structure (each chapter is quite long and covers quite a bit of range in terms of time). The content was contemporary but relatable enough that the themes of the story won't become dated and irrelevant (yes, even with mentions of a certain celebrity in the last chapter!).

These lines from the first chapter in particular stood out to me:

"...and he didn’t start out determined to stay single, like I had."

"Because what you didn’t hear about from friends, what they didn’t show you on TV was how sloppy starting a family was."

"Sometimes I wondered if marriages should be private affairs, meant only for the bride and the groom to quietly express their love and commitment."

These are certainly things that many people think about, which make the characters and story instantaneously believable.

A memorable book if you're looking for a thoughtful, contemporary story about self-discovery, that isn't dragged down by unimaginative and rehashed genre tropes.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Another hit by a talented author! June 9, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
American Angst takes staples of American culture, like Thanksgiving dinners, politics, and celebrity scandals, and centers stories around these themes that are personal and emotional. Miscarriages, breakups, and attempted murder - this book runs the gambit, but it's also funny and clever. Osterkamp uses lyrical prose and excellent character development, and I couldn't stop reading it. Another hit by a talented author!
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5.0 out of 5 stars I Love Lucy (and Robin) May 31, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
American Angst follows the lives of Lucy (Campaign Promises, November Surprise, Blue State) and Robin (The Holdout). Each chapter is a short story focusing on a ‘moment’ in the character’s life (sometimes Lucy is narrator, sometimes Robin). When I say a moment, the story may stretch over weeks or months but revolves around a central idea. I love this technique of slowly revealing a character through a series of vignettes. It worked so well in Lucy’s earlier books and just as well here. The author’s talent for writing dramatic scenes lightened with comedy was well displayed again. I particularly loved Robin’s email competition with her friend in chapter two – just the right amount of humour with the angst. I’ve long been a fan of Lucy’s blog so, even though I’d already read most of the material in that chapter as updates to the blog, I really enjoyed reading it again as a complete story and I’m glad that I now have it available to me in this book. Makes rereading much easier. Really looking forward to the next publication from this talented author.
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More About the Author

I have written four full-length novels and two novellas, which have been Amazon best-sellers, but I'm only getting started!

I get very attached to my characters. Lucy debuted in Campaign Promises, a free novella that I released to thank all my awesome readers. Then Lucy's story continued with November Surprise and Blue State, both available on Amazon. Most recently there's The Holdout, also featuring Lucy, but the main character is Monty's cousin Robin, and it's about love, justice, and reality TV.

You can find me on Twitter but I don't tweet super often. A better idea is to follow my blog,, or Lucy's blog,, where you'll read about Lucy's career, marriage, and politics.

I teach in Minneapolis, MN, where I enjoy my boot collection, spending time with my husband and two chatty children, and finding time to write. My other novels are both award winning - Following My Toes and Starring in the Movie of My Life. Visit me at

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