A Good American

Thoughts GoodAmerican.indd by Alex George, Amy Einhorn Books 2012, 400 pages, eBook

FIRST sentence:  Always, there was music.

What’s it ABOUT? This is an epic tale of an immigrant couple from Germany who land in the fictitious town of Beatrice Missouri. They have children who have children, run a business, sing some songs and all is told from a grandson’s perspective. We ultimately are charmed, saddened and cheered by the experience.

What’s GOOD: Wow and yikes?! – my description sounds way more boring than the book really is so bear with me! It is light and yet poignant at times, funny most of the times, except when it’s not and a very good general fiction tale about the generations living in the middle of American and embracing American themes. I laughed and cried and those are two good things to remember about a book experience.

Here’s what goodreads says:

An uplifting novel about the families we create and the places we call home.

What’s maybe NOT:  While Nancy thought the end of the book’s coming-of-age ‘feel’ was not her favorite part, I actually thought the ending sections pulled it all together and charmed me to appreciate the entire tale. I was beginning to worry somewhere in the middle that it was becoming a meandering list of who’s who in the family but the grandson’s adventures and realizations about his family’s motivations linked the stories and situations. I was moved by it all, in the end.

FINAL thoughts:  I was swayed in a good way for this book because I have enjoyed reading Mr. George’s tweets. I was swayed in a positive way to love this book because it is set in Missouri and Missouri is one of my most favorite states. I am of German heritage though I do not have any fun stories such as this to tell of my ancestors. I was delighted that the town was named Beatrice because I have Loved Ones living in a town of that name (but not in MO). I enjoyed this book; it had humor and adventure and love. It made me laugh and had scenes that brought tears to my eyes.

RATING: A solid four slice of pie kind of book. Apparently ‘pie’ didn’t make my notes from the book. WHa?!

Other REVIEW/s:  Nancy the BookFool gives an excellent critique.

splenetic p.258 – bad-tempered; spiteful
amatory p.320 – relating to or induced by sexual love or desire

 My apologies to the author for tweeting the title incorrectly. YIKES. I blame it on the format. As much as I like the storage convenience of eBooks, I much prefer physical books to electronic versions.



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15 thoughts on “A Good American

  1. A lot of people have no idea how German parts of Missouri are, especially in light of the French names around where I grew up (Cape Girardeau, St. Genevieve). This author sounds like someone who knows what he’s writing about.

    1. I kept thinking about the Hermann area – such great memories of visiting for Oktoberfest. And I worked with a guy from Westphalia so I thought of him when I was reading this, too. I do have fond memories of living in MO…

  2. I have Nancy’s ARC of this book! I really have to read it! I love books that make me cry :p I haven’t had a good crier of a book in a long time.

  3. Not sure this one is for me but I am glad it worked for you. I haven’t seen many bloggers mention it. I do enjoy stories about family though.

    1. Yea, this might not be one I would recommend for you specifically. But I’m only 2.5 hours away from being done with Mr. Mercedes! I’m thinking about writing a SPOILERIFFIC-able post to chat about it… nah, I’ll just wait and write a non-spoiler review next week.

      1. I’m the opposite of Ti…not a big fan of the family sagas. I think just because I feel like saga automatically = long. And not the good kind of long, like a Stephen King book (see how I brought that around to King so now I can talk about Mr. M?). I have 40 minutes left of Mr. Mercedes and I’m a bit nervous as to how it’s all going to play out!

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