Automotive Holiday Deals Books Gift Guide Books Gift Guide Shop Men's Athletic Shoes Learn more nav_sap_SWP_6M_fly_beacon Black Friday egg_2015 All-New Amazon Fire TV Beauty Gifts Gifts Under $50 Find the Best Purina Pro Plan for Your Pet Amazon Gift Card Offer bf15 bf15 bf15 $30 Off Amazon Echo $30 Off Fire HD 6 Kindle Black Friday Deals Shop Now Tikes
God Says No and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more

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.

FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Only 1 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.
God Says No has been added to your Cart
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Some wear on the dj. Book inside is in good and clean condition.
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 Says No Hardcover – May 25, 2009

18 customer reviews

See all 4 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
New from Used from
"Please retry"
"Please retry"
$7.57 $0.01

"The Lost Codex" by Alan Jacobson
Two ancient biblical documents reveal long-buried secrets that could change the world as we know it. The team's mission: find the stolen documents and capture—or kill—those responsible for unleashing a coordinated and unprecedented attack on US soil. See more
$22.00 FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Only 1 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.

Special Offers and Product Promotions

  • Take an Extra 30% Off Any Book: Use promo code HOLIDAY30 at checkout to get an extra 30% off any book for a limited time. Excludes Kindle eBooks and Audible Audiobooks. Restrictions apply. Learn more

Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

“A tender, funny tour of a mind struggling to do the right thing. A
revelatory and sympathetic guide to a misunderstood world.”

--Steve Martin, author of "Shopgirl" and "Born Standing Up"

"James Hannaham's GOD SAYS NO introduces a groundbreaking new American
voice: a writer of spectacular sentences who has trained his sights on a
world that has hardly been touched by literary fiction. Topical and
ambitious, disturbing and hilarious, GOD SAYS NO is everything a person
could ask of a first novel — and twice that much. "

--Jennifer Egan, author of "Look at Me" and "The Keep"

"This novel is an absolute original. Gary Gray's search for wholeness and
acceptance is a heartfelt (and often very funny) plea for all men (and
women) to be embraced just as they are. A wonderful debut."

--Martha Southgate, author of "Third Girl From The Left"

“GOD SAYS NO is a book that was desperate to be written but well out of
reach. And then James Hannaham came along and wrote it, with the kind of
care, wit, sympathy and fury that the book deserved. Imagine Candide…—
okay, imagine Candide as a black man, a southerner, a Christian
fundamentalist, middle-class, obese, married, a father, and utterly, even
profoundly gay.
If a comedy, in the classical sense, is a story then ends in a
marriage, and a tragedy is a story that ends with a death, then what do you
call a book that ends with a split and a resurrection? A truly daring first
novel, and something to read.”

--Jim Lewis, author of "Why the Tree Loves the Ax"

About the Author

James Hannaham was born in the Bronx and grew up in Yonkers, New York. His fiction has appeared in the Literary Review and several anthologies. He teaches creative writing at the Pratt Institute and is a staff writer in the culture department at Salon.

Hero Quick Promo
Holiday Deals in Kindle Books
Save up to 85% on more than 1,000 Kindle Books. These deals are valid until November 30, 2015. Learn more

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 300 pages
  • Publisher: McSweeney's (May 25, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1934781401
  • ISBN-13: 978-1934781401
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,071,709 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By abraham burickson on June 20, 2009
Format: Hardcover
It is a rare thing indeed that I want to have a good experience reading a book and then do. God Says No began with a premise I wasn't sure about and a character whose credulity I wasn't certain I could relate to, and a tone I couldn't quite parse at first, but after a few chapters I was hooked. What Hannaham has done here is to turn his protagonist - a pitiable character not normally found in the protagonist role - and turn him into the Everyman. Though I am neither gay nor black nor Christian nor overweight nor from deepest Florida, I cannot help identifying with Gary Gray. He is a man fundamentally at odds with who he is and on a quest to make amends; who of us hasn't experienced that?

It is always interesting to find a protagonist who is clearly less intelligent or less in the know than the author. Gray is one of these, and his innocence makes him a foil for the endless string of absurdities that is American Sexuality. Nobody really gets off scott-free here, and nobody is fully skewered. The most potent part of the book is when Gray is at Restoration Ministries (where they turn homosexuals straight). The idea is hard to think of but with mockery, but this is where Gray has his first taste of introspection, of acceptance, and of cameraderie. As a reader you feel the painful irony of it; you are pulled in two directions: wishing for Gray to escape their clutches and hoping he'll stick around with them long enough to give himself an honest look.
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
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By amy bou on May 29, 2009
Format: Hardcover
GOD SAYS NO is a novel that does what literature should do: make a completely unique and fully realized character seem utterly human and relate-able. I challenge any reader who skims the book jacket copy and pauses to wonder what they might have in common with the narrator, Gary Gray--a young Christian fundamentalist black man from the South who is gay--to walk away without feeling affected by this story and this character.

The writing is poetic, surprising, and extremely funny. James Hannaham has a truly original voice with an important (and entertaining) story to tell. A majorly good new novel by a major new American writer.
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
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By scoundrel on December 3, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Stereotypes: gotta love ‘em, gotta hate ‘em. Mostly, though? Hate ‘em. With his first novel, James Hannaham deftly avoids the two most common stereotypes of gay African-American men (the rugged but closeted dynamo; the overly flamboyant drag queen) for someone more unassuming and painfully real. Gary Grey, the overweight narrator of God Says No has neither the flash of E. Lynn Harris’ characters nor the “Lord ha’ mercy!” minstrelsy of a closeted choir director (another infamous stereotype), and Gray’s struggle with marriage, religion and desire becomes all the more moving for its real-life dimensions.

We first meet Gary at a Christian college, fighting his roommate over a broken Jesus. Gary’s language, by turns sincere, naïve and lustful, reflects not only a religious upbringing, but also his Southern roots; he describes a love as fleeting as “a sugarcube in a hot shower.” But even as he tries to remain true to his moral code—chastising those take the Lord’s name in vain, for instance—his desire for other men overwhelms up his judgment. Gary prays for the Lord to change him but soon takes matters into his own hands: he impregnates and wed his fellow student and Disney World admirer, Annie. Despite his best intentions, however, Gary finds himself drawn to public restrooms and parks for his sexual urges until he finally finds himself in an ex-gay ministry.

Here, too, Hannaham avoids portraying the ministry as villainous. Even if the ultimate goals of Resurrection Ministries is suspect, the support mechanism the men in the ministry provide is touching, even as they relapse with too-long hugs or unsportsmanlike butt-grabs.
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
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Michael P. McCullough on August 7, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I am a member of the "McSweeney's Book Club" and am enjoying reading the books I receive (approximately) once a month.

A book that takes the reader to a new and different world can be quite a diversion - the narrator of *God Says No,* is black, gay, fundamentalist Protestant, Southern, and obese. It would be hard to find more differences. (Okay, okay - I could stand to lose a few pounds!)

When I began I completely expected this book to be a smug and judgmental satire denigrating (Southern) religious views on being gay. While the narrator clearly seemed to be a little less intelligent than the writer, this book is a genuine and sincere presentation of his problems from his point of view, and has a surprising and satisfying conclusion. The book was kind and frank regarding all points of view presented.

Most highly recommended.
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
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By P. Funkenbusch on August 5, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I stayed up very late last night to finish this novel I'd begun the day before. I can't remember the last time I read a "couldn't put it down" book. What a beautiful, funny, brutally honest book. As a student at a Christian college in the 1970's, everything he writes rings true and the story brought back many memories, including the pain that the main character lives through. The fact that he does live through it all makes it a book I plan to give many people. I don't know if the author would even consider writing a sequel but I would like to find out the next chapter in the life of this Candide for the 21st century. Am so glad I read this novel. Laughed, reflected, was choked up a few times. Truly did not want it to end. Definitely a book for discussion.
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

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more
God Says No
This item: God Says No
Price: $22.00
Ships from and sold by

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Want to discover more products? Check out this page to see more: psychological thriller