Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.

Qty:1
  • List Price: $17.95
  • Save: $3.72 (21%)
FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books.
Only 8 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
God Bless America: Storie... has been added to your Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $25.
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Solid used copy with visible wear.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

God Bless America: Stories Paperback – October 25, 2011

4.9 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

See all 2 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Price
New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Paperback
"Please retry"
$14.23
$6.75 $0.01

2016 Book Awards
Browse award-winning titles. See all 2016 winners
$14.23 FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books. Only 8 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • God Bless America: Stories
  • +
  • (Not That You Asked): Rants, Exploits, and Obsessions
  • +
  • My Life in Heavy Metal
Total price: $43.54
Buy the selected items together


Editorial Reviews

Review

"Steve Almond's work is funny and beguiling and completely original." --Lorrie Moore, author of A Gate at the Stairs

"Steve Almond is one of our finest literary provocateurs. His stories are without equal in their beautiful terrible honesty. Stylish and finely wrought, these are tales with the force of life itself." --Junot Díaz, author of The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

"These wonderful, wickedly hilarious stories have forgiveness at their core. Steve Almond's characters are sons and fathers, inveterate gamblers, thwarted dreamers, the mothers of children gone astray, and God Bless America teaches us how to love every one of them. Almond always has an ear to the ground for the 'dumb throb, the frantic seep' of human hope, which his prose transmutes into music." --Karen Russell, author of Swamplandia!

"You could drop Steve Almond onto any strange planet and within days he'd beam back a story written by an insider, maybe even a native, that creeps you out it's so familiar and strange. His imagination is chameleon and ruthless, his fiction masterful right down to the sentence, the word." --Brad Watson, author of Aliens in the Prime of Their Lives

"I can't resist saying it: God bless Steve Almond. And God bless his inexhaustible imagination, compassion, and élan. This is a wonderful collection of stories, sharp-witted and big-hearted in equal measure." --Sarah Shun-lien Bynum, author of Ms. Hempel Chronicles

"Steve Almond is one of our most prolific-fearless-political-hairy-intelligent-sexy-hilarious writers. He makes me shake my head with sadness one page, snort coffee out my nose the next. And he makes me care deeply about his characters, so many of them wrong in the head and right in the heart, down on their luck but clinging to the desperate hope that the next hand of cards will turn up flush." --Benjamin Percy, author of The Wilding

"Steve Almond's work is funny and beguiling and completely original." --Lorrie Moore, author of A Gate at the Stairs

"These wonderful, wickedly hilarious stories have forgiveness at their core. Steve Almond's characters are sons and fathers, inveterate gamblers, thwarted dreamers, the mothers of children gone astray, and God Bless America teaches us how to love every one of them. Almond always has an ear to the ground for the 'dumb throb, the frantic seep' of human hope, which his prose transmutes into music." --Karen Russell, author of Swamplandia!

About the Author

Steve Almond is the author of the story collections The Evil B.B. Chow and My Life in Heavy Metal, the novel Which Brings Me to You (with Julianna Baggott), and the nonfiction books Rock and Roll Will Save Your Life, (Not That You Asked), and Candyfreak. His stories have appeared in Tin House, Playboy, Zoetrope: All-Story, Ploughshares, Virginia Quarterly Review, and Ecotone, among other magazines, and have been reprinted in Best American Short Stories and The Pushcart Prize. Almond lives outside Boston.
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Image
Interested in the Audiobook Edition?
If you’re the author, publisher, or rights holder of this book, let ACX help you produce the audiobook.Learn more.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 211 pages
  • Publisher: Lookout Books (October 25, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0984592237
  • ISBN-13: 978-0984592234
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.8 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #903,729 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

5 star
88%
4 star
12%
3 star
0%
2 star
0%
1 star
0%
See all 8 customer reviews
Share your thoughts with other customers

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've been a big fan of Almond's since his first story collection, My Life in Heavy Metal, which I re-read several times, and I've followed his career through all the subsequent story collections, books of essays, and the novel he co-wrote with Julianna Baggott. Through it all, Almond never disappoints. His language is always so simultaneously inventive and precise, plumbing the depths of characters whose weaknesses and worst instincts are all too familiar. Steve's also got a strong iconoclastic/provocateur streak so he takes you to places some writers might not dare to go, as he holds up a mirror to sides of ourselves we might not always be the most proud of. God Bless America is another great collection, displaying his exceptional talent. The 13 stories in the collection are:

1. God Bless America - 15 pp - A very funny story in the rich vein of marvelously self-deluded protagonists. A young man who works as a stock boy in a drugstore accidentally takes an acting class at an adult education center. With no talent but a new passion for the dramatic arts and with dreams of becoming a major star, he takes a job as a tour guide for Duck-boat-like company in Boston. The shady North End characters who run that operation get him unwittingly involved in some high crimes, and with serendipitous luck he manages to have his own little share of the American dream come true.

2. Donkey Greedy, Donkey Gets Punched - 22 pp - A great story, chosen for the 2010 Best American Short Stories collection. Steve, I think, is the son of analysts, so he has a lot of fun tweaking the profession. He wrote another very funny story about an analyst who likes to parade around naked in his office after hours.
Read more ›
Comment 8 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
Steve Almond creates realistic characters, young and old, dealing with their own demons, flaws, and the pressures of American life. I laughed at times and nearly cried at others. Almond's wit and gift for storytelling made this collection one of the most enjoyable I've read.

My favorite story, mostly because I love to play, read about, and write about poker, was "Donkey Greedy, Donkey Gets Punched." Forgetting all of the clever idiosyncrasies on display in each of the two main characters, a psychoanalyst irresistibly drawn to the poker tables to combat his secretly depressive personality and his swashbuckling professional poker playing patient, Almond's portrayal of the poker action itself in the climactic final scene propelled this story into a special place within my personal poker-related canon.

Writing is said to be a decision making process, always considering the next word, and when writing about the progression of a fictional poker hand, that decision making process is compounded by many potential choices regarding cards, odds, player psychology, etc., and Almond's description, what he chose to include and what he left up to the reader, captivated and enthralled. I admire his focus on the players' psyche and conversation, adequate but not overwhelming attention given to the cards themselves, and the overall flow of the game's action. As the Dr. and patient square off at the table during the final sequence, Almond begins from the Dr.'s perspective and I never saw the end coming, kicking myself in retrospect for not being a more astute prognosticator. In my defense, I was gobbling up the words so quickly, so eager to learn the result of the game and story, that I didn't try very hard to predict any outcome other than the one that seemed to be on its way.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Kindle Edition
Like most fiction I enjoy, Steve Almond's fluid, distinctive style led me to read the stories once for pleasure and again to see if I could figure out "how they worked." My second reading usually includes as much pleasure as the first.

The best fiction presents a quality most easily defined as magic. All good fiction requires mastery, training, and rigorous practice. But beguilement occurs (I believe this like religion) when readers are compelled to participate. The writing demands the reader's perspective, his or her opinions, and experiences. Fine fiction arouses memories or thoughts and feelings powerful enough to imbue stories with recurring spirit. At the same time, the receptive reader develops a new and intimate awareness. That's my definition of art. (I cannot consider my own fiction finished or even promising without readers.) A fanciful, even mystical theory, but other readers and writers share my standard or else I've misread several essays.

Either way, the fourteen fictional pieces in Steve Almond's "God Bless America: Stories" offer you that chance of enthrallment. They progress from hilarious ("God Bless America" and "Donkey Greedy, Donkey Gets Punched"); to funny but sad ("Not Until You Say Yes" and "Shotgun Wedding"); then sad but funny ("Tamalpais" and "What the Bird Says.") I've settled on poignant for "The Darkness Together." Following these are: the sick-sad-funny ("A Jew Berserk On Christmas Eve"); the tragic ("Akedah"); creepy-political ("Hagar's Sons"); tragic-political ("First Date Back"); and finally a man's hard life climaxing in horror that may or may not offer redemption ("A Dream of Sleep".) God Bless America: Stories
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

God Bless America: Stories
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more
This item: God Bless America: Stories