Winner of the 2014 PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction
Shortlisted for the William Saroyan International Prize for Writing
Named “Outstanding 2013 Collection” by The Story Prize
Pushcart Prize Winner
In this stunning debut, Shawn Vestal transports us to the afterlife, the rugged Northwest, and the early days of Mormonism. From “The First Several Hundred Years Following My Death,” an absurd, profound vision of a hellish heaven, to "Winter Elders," in which missionaries calmly and relentlessly pursue a man who has left the fold, these nine stories illuminate the articles of faith that make us human.
The concluding triptych tackles the legends and legacy of Mormonism head-on, culminating in "Diviner," a seriocomic portrait of the young Joseph Smith, back when he was not yet the founder of a religion but a man hired to find buried treasure. Godforsaken Idaho is an indelible collection by the writer you need to read next.
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A provocative and revelatory debut, filled with stories about losing faith and trying (often in vain) to find purpose, mainly set amid the sparsely populated Mormon country of the rugged Northwest.Feb 18 2013 | Read Full Review of Godforsaken Idaho
In his debut collection of short stories, Vestal, a journalist for The Spokesman-Review, focuses on down-on-their-luck types, stubborn men in the dregs of society and on the verge of giving up. The unMar 25 2013 | Read Full Review of Godforsaken Idaho
It's a journey through Idaho with a stop in heaven in Shawn Vestal's intriguing short story debut, "Godforsaken Idaho."May 07 2013 | Read Full Review of Godforsaken Idaho
All News Forums ».Apr 20 2013 | Read Full Review of Godforsaken Idaho
THE NARRATOR of “Opposition in All Things,” the seventh story in Shawn Vestal's debut collection, Godforsaken Idaho, is 32 years dead when he wakes up inside the vision of Rulon Warren, the son of a niece he had known when she was just a little girl.Aug 21 2013 | Read Full Review of Godforsaken Idaho
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