A Handbook of American Prayer

A Handbook of American Prayer

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A man walks into a bar. A dispute ensues, and the bartender kills him. He's sentenced to ten years for manslaughter. In prison, the convict, Wardlin Stuart, writes prayers addressed to no god in particular. Inexplicably, his prayers - whether it's a request for a girlfriend or a special favor for a fellow inmate - are answered, be it in days or weeks. When his collection of supplications, A Handbook of American Prayer, is published by a New York press, Stuart emerges a celebrity author. Settling into a new life in Arizona, he encounters a fundamentalist minister. The two are destined for a confrontation. In the interim, it seems that the god to whom Stuart has been praying has manifested himself on the earth. In this short novel about America's conflicting love triangle - celebrity, spirituality, and money - Shepard negotiates the thin line between the real and the surreal, expounding upon violence and redemption along the way. this story of an unlikely American messiah shows why The Wall Street Journal has compared Shepard, an award-winning author, to Graham Greene, Robert Stone, and Ward Just.A former Vegas dealer and showgirl (and, it was rumored, hooker), sheremained, atfortyone, a very attractive woman, goinga bit leathery ... had a thought or two about Nancy Belliveaua#39;s breasts It went on to contrast the frosty dark space of the bar, the quiet talk, old desertcore guitar bands riffing softly on the jukebox, with the Mesaa#39;s hotly spiced cuisine, a culinary analogue toNancya#39;s sexual home cooking.

Title:A Handbook of American Prayer
Author:Lucius Shepard
Publisher:Hachette UK - 2014-04-30


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