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James Sturm's America: God, Gold, and Golems
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James Sturm's America: God, Gold, and Golems

3.87 of 5 stars 3.87  ·  rating details  ·  193 ratings  ·  30 reviews
Focusing on less sensational times in U.S. history (non-war and pre-Depression) James Sturm's America draws a portrait of the people and their dreams that make up this country. Comprised of three chapters--"The Revival," "Hundreds of Feet Below Daylight," and "The Golem's Mighty Swing"--the stories grow as the country grows: from pioneers searching for a place to call home ...more
Hardcover, 192 pages
Published October 2nd 2007 by Drawn and Quarterly
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Sam Quixote
This is a collected edition of three books James Sturm has written/drawn - "The Revival", "Hundreds of Feet Below Daylight", and "The Golem's Mighty Swing". All of the stories are fictional but have a basis of historical record.

"The Revival" is the shortest of the three and is set in late 18th century America. A couple are walking through the woods on their way to hear a preacher's sermon. They devoutly believe in God and talk vaguely about a miracle. I won't spoil the surprise but it's a dark,

I first read James Sturm, and really liked his work- so I tracked down this book through an inter library loan- and I was not dissapointed!

This is a three-story volume, containing one that I had already read ("The Golem's Mighty Swing") and two more that I had not. ("The Revival" and "Hundred of Feet Below Daylight")

The facinating thing about this book, is how it is, in essence, a perfect picture of american history... and yet told in scrawls and sketches, ink and paint... you see it through the
Edward Sullivan
A collection of three previously published graphic novels offer a clever look at leser-known episodes of America's past.
When I saw this volume in the Library the main thing that drew me to it was the fact that it had "The Golem's Mighty Swing" story in it. This is a graphic novel I've wanted to read for a couple years now. I enjoy baseball and love the stories behind the game. This story was no exception. It was a beautifully drawn story and a great baseball story. There are not that many baseball comics in America. This is one of the great stories. James Sturm knows how to draw baseball comics. This is the secon ...more
This book is a collection of three separate stories, each looking at a glimpse of a time and place in American History. The third, "The Golem's Mighty Swing," was recommended for thinking about GN narrative flow.

In the first story, "The Revival (1801)," we encounter a couple attending a camp meeting in Kentucky, complete with revival, dynamic "miracle-working" preachers, and a startling twist at the end.

"Hundreds of Feet Below Daylight (1886)" chronicles the people and problems in a mining town
Tyler Hill
There are some books that you search out, and other books that -through fate or circumstance- seem to find you. This book definitely fell into the later category for me. And, I'm really happy it did. I'd never encountered Sturm's work before, but when someone in my illustration group brought in an old copy to give away, I grabbed it, hoping it would satisfy my budding interest in all things early Americana.

This book is actually an anthology of three short stories. The first, involves a family a
This book is comprised of three unrelated stories. I liked the first one - it was eerie and memorably weird - but didn't care much for the other two.

If I ever write a book and ambitiously call it "America," I'll make sure to put some immigrants, black people, and women (who aren't either dead or crazy) in it.

Yes, violence against women, children and non-whites has been real in American history. But I feel like there are more intriguing and empowering ways to tell these stories than to just sho
Apr 09, 2010 Brian rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: teh jews, baseball lovers
Given the title and format, I expected some supernatural stories tied into our nation's founding. But I was wrong, and I'm not the worse off for it.

The first two stories are interesting enough, but are throwaway. They take up less than half the book. The best part is undeniably the final story of the 1920s Jewish baseball team. The delivery and pacing is perfect, and utilizes the capabilities of a graphic novel to their fullest. That the author credits a lot of baseball manga that he cribbed off
Bob Redmond
Sturm's book addresses some of my favorite territory: American history and baseball. I found those themes, as well as his drawing style, irresistable. It's impossible for such a captivating book to earn less than 4 stars here, although I was disappointed in the sketchy nature of the narratives.

There are three short stories in this book: other than the loose theme of Americana, there is no connection at all between them. They are presented chronologically: a religious revival in Kentucky (from 18
Rocco Versaci
Sturm's specialty is to unearth those rich yet obscure footnotes of American history that shed light on our country and its people. in his book, "James Sturm's America," he collects three previously-published works: "The Revival" (a Hawthornesque story about a pioneer family at a religous revival), "Hundreds of Feet Below Daylight" (a tragedy set in a small mining town), and "The Golem's Mighty Swing" (a longer piece--previously published as a graphic novel--about the Stars of David, a traveling ...more
The first two stories are solid, but The Golem's Mighty Swing is excellent. If it were a bit longer and more in-depth, it would rate among the very top in the genre.
sweet pea
this is an interesting collection with beautiful illustrations. of the stories, the first - about the revival - appealed to me the most. each story is a snapshot of a period of time. the story and illustrations combine to transport one back in time. both the second and third stories end kind of abruptly and make me wish there was a little more. i haven't seen anyone do historical snapshots in the graphic form exactly like this. in that way, it reminds me a bit of Eisner. definitely views history ...more
Fantastic GN. As the title gives away, it tells bits of American history in 3 parts: "God," about religious life in the form of a camp revival in 1801 Kentucky; "Gold," about late nineteenth-century gold-mining, and "Golems," about a Jewish baseball team. I don't consider myself a baseball fan, but "Golems" was intriguing, fascinating and it really drew me in.
There's a lot of emotion, history and thought-provoking ideas in these three bits of historic American life.
A compilation of three works, each representing god, gold, and golems, and as a whole, James Sturm's picture of America. It's all there in the title. :) It was a provocative piece, and the third story, The Golem's Mighty Swing, was both what drew me to this work and what made it worth my time.
This HC has 3 different stories, I've already read The Golem's Mighty Swing--and that story is excellent--but the other two stories will be new to me...and now that I finished those two it's no surprise as they too were excellent.
A nice anthology of stories from the gritty underbelly of American history. A few to many crazed and angry facial expressions in the artwork at times, but I don't think realism was intended.
Emilia P
Jan 29, 2008 Emilia P rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: my mom
Shelves: comic-books
I really love how Sturm is able to get really into a time period and mindset without beating you over the head about how history is cool. Right on, dude.
Matt Piechocinski
I didn't like the middle story as much as the other two ... the first being especially creepy, and the Golem's Mighty Swing just being pretty awesome.
William Clemens
Three great stories that left me wanting more I really enjoyed this book and Sturms vision of some of the more unsavory aspects of American history.
I didn't understand any of the baseball stuff but the stories were great and told/drawn in an engaging/entertaining/occasionally unsettling way.
3 stories, all which take place between 1800 and 1920 or so. Of the 3, the one on baseball (Golems) is the the best. Sad and sweet and funny.
incredible. excellent book. should, could be taught in high school/college. really good account of early america. akin to wil eisner books.
Jake Forbes
I've never been exposed to James Sturm before, but this collection of three historical stories has made me an admirer. Wonderful comics.
Amar Pai
The story about early American revivalism was particularly haunting. Maybe just cos I have a kid now... some images you don't want to see
2 1/2 really..I loved the drawings but found the stories to be eh....especially the abrupt endings on all of them.
A good overview of Sturm's development as a cartoonist and a storyteller -- worth it for Golem alone.
Shivering William
Devastating in its simplicity. Reveals much about faith, fortune, and fame.
Out of the three stories, The Golems Mighty Swing was my favorite.
Three very different stories, all in historical contexts.
God: A
Gold: C
Golem: B
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James Sturm is the author of several award-winning graphic novels for children and adults, including James Sturm’s America, Market Day, The Golem’s Mighty Swing and Satchel Paige: Striking Out Jim Crow. He is also the founder of the Center for Cartoon Studies and the National Association for Comics Art Educators. He created Adventures in Cartooning with collaborators Alexis Frederic-Frost and Andr ...more
More about James Sturm...
Adventures in Cartooning: How to Turn Your Doodles Into Comics Market Day Satchel Paige: Striking Out Jim Crow The Golem's Mighty Swing Fantastic Four: Unstable Molecules

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