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God's Kingdom

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  402 ratings  ·  91 reviews
Howard Frank Mosher is one of America's most acclaimed writers. His fiction set in the world of Vermont's Northeast Kingdom chronicles the intertwining family histories of the natives, wanderers, outcasts, and fugitives--white, Native American, escaped slaves fleeing north, French Canadians, and others--who settled in this remote and beautiful place.

Set in the 1950s, God's
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published October 6th 2015 by St. Martin's Press
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Average rating 3.95  · 
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”Someone, perhaps Samuel Clemens, said that every story begins with a stranger coming to town or with a man or a woman going on a journey. Certainly this definition holds true for most of the best stories of God’s Kingdom, from the arrival of Charles Kinneson I onward.”

This is the story of a town, of its’ people, a coming-of-age story of a young aspiring writer, James Kinneson, III, a story set in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom, beginning in the 1950s. The area is rich in history
Elyse  Walters
Sep 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
"God's Kingdom", takes place in the little known mountains of northern Vermont near the
Canadian border. The regional imagery inspires the magnificent storytelling....and the
storytelling inspiring the beauty of the land.

"Just Ahead, Second-Largest covered Bridge in the World" ......
"Jim read the historical marker beside the entrance of the bridge:
"This covered bridge over the upper Connecticut River was built by James Kinneson
in 1789. In 1812, 'Abolition Jim' rallied a contingent of local logg
Angela M
Sep 15, 2015 rated it really liked it

There are two main characters here , our protagonist James Kinneson III , Jim who matures before our eyes , of course it's his story and the Reverend Dr. Pliny Templeton , long dead is also at the center of it . Maybe there's three because this place Kingdom, Vermont and everything about it is a character in its own right .

We meet Jim at age 14 in this first poignant tale of "Blooded" , about the ritual of getting your first deer. The next four years are depicted in stories around Jim Kinneson a
Diane S ☔
Sep 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
God's Kingdom, Vermont just over the border from Canada. The story of the Kinnesons told not in a straightforward narrative but rather like snapshots. Stories told to a young Jim Kinneson who wants to be a reporter, a long family history that covers, whiskey still and prohibition, slavery, a horrible fire, the KKK, the fight to form a union, hunting and fishing trips with his grandfather, competitive baseball games, basketball, triumphs and sorrows are all part of a long history.

Told in vivid an
Nov 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
Both my husband and I enjoyed this book.

This was a wonderful story of family and coming of age of a young man, Jim Kinneson. Jim learns the history of his family and though it takes many twists and turns, the warmth and love is so apparent. Using the background of life on the Maine/Canadian border, the author invokes the beauty of nature, family,and roots that trace back many years. As we learn of the family and its ancestors, we begin to understand relationships within the family and people li
Aug 26, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
If you are not religious, no need to worry that God's Kingdom is a religious book. It's actually a book of interconnected stories set in a fictitious place called God's Kingdom, in Kingdom County, Vermont on the border with Canada. The stories take place in the 1950s, and are told from the perspective of teenage Jim Kinneson, an aspiring writer whose family has lived in the region for many years. Mosher's understated writing and deceptively simple storytelling grew on me, and made for a lovely r ...more
A well-crafted tale of a budding writer growing up in the 50s in a remote rural community in northeastern Vermont known as the “Northeast Kingdom” or just “The Kingdom”. It continues the journals of young Jim Kinneson that started with Moser’s wonderful “A Stranger in the Kingdom”, which I read over a decade ago (published in 1989, or a 25 year gap). Jim at 15 has the benefits of a tight, loving family, including a warm, wise mother, a father who is a liberal newspaper editor, and an older broth ...more
Aug 13, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed, goodreads
This book is a partial history of Kingdom County, Vermont, told in a series of beautifully crafted short stories. Although it is called a novel, there is no overall plot. The stories are linked by time (1950s), characters, place and theme and are told by Jim Kinneson between the ages of 14 and 18. The history of the Kinneson family is inseparable from that of God's Kingdom. The members of the Kinneson family have been farmers, abolitionists, whiskey brewers and Pulitzer Prize winning newspaper e ...more
Sep 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
This was my second Howard Frank Mosher novel. After reading A Stranger in the Kingdom from 1989, I was impressed with Mosher's storytelling skills. I can't believe it took me so long to read another one of his novels.

Like A Stranger in the Kingdom, this Kinneson family story is brought to you from fictional Kingdom County, Vermont and based around Jim Kinneson as he grows through his teens in the 1950's. It is filled with stories of the Kinneson family, of humor, of small town life, of beauty,
Melissa I
Aug 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Review to come and a million thanks to #StMartinsPress #ShelfAwareness and the author Howard Frank Mosher for the opportunity to read yet another fantastic book from this publisher and another great for the 2015 Book year. One of the best reading years of my life. I'm stunned at the amount of truly amazing books I've been blessed to read and thankful for every single one. ...more
Steven Robinson
Oct 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Emotional read.

The ability to write a story that evokes so many feelings will keep me wanting more. Get back to work Howard Frank, I will be waiting.
Carol Royce Owen
Apr 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Many years ago I was at a conference where Howard Frank Mosher was the keynote speaker. I didn't know of his works, but came away in awe when he said that he would often revisemany of his manuscripts as often as 50 times by hand - no computer. As I read God's Kingdom, his newest novel, I was reminded of this as lines jumped out at me that were so beautifully written, flowing as effortlessly as the waters in the rivers that run through God's Kingdom.

Jim Kinneson III is the son of Editor Charlie K
Donald Crane
Oct 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The first Mosher book I read, back in the mid-nineties, was A Stranger in the Kingdom, and have longed for another by him that rivals it. This (God's Kingdom) was pretty close, and it involves the same characters as Stranger.

I was a little disappointed early in the book... it seemed like just a collection of chapter-long short stories, with no overarching connection. Interesting short stories, and fun to read, but this book was billed as a novel. I wasn't seeing it. (Yes, the characters were the
Ronald Koltnow
Jul 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
To be published by St. Martin's Press 6 October 2015

Howard Frank Mosher makes it all look easy. This deceptively simple novel about a young man's coming of age, encumbered by the weight of his family history, seems at times to be a memoir. Young Jim Kinneson goes hunting, goes fishing, plays baseball, falls in love, meets with life and tragedy. That is the story. Yet few writers could imbue this with the wisdom. the wit, the passion that Mosher does, and has been doing since DISAPPEARANCES in 19
This was a 3.5 read for me.

A skillfully paced novel about one young man’s reckoning with his family’s past and his duty for the truth as he stays true to himself. This story follows the Kinneson family since their arrival in the Northeastern part of Vermont in the 1600’s but is mostly the story of Jim Kinneson who turned fourteen in 1952 and begins to write down family stories that has been passed down to him. In this quest, he encounters situations and people that at times differ with the perce
A funny, poignant set of tales about a boy growing up in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont in the 1950s and learning about his family's and his close-knit community's history. Book comes out in October 2015. ...more
Aug 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: advance-copy
4.5 stars. I love Howard Frank Mosher's stories of Vermont's Northeast Kingdom. They are tragicomic--heart-wrenching at times but often very funny. This is a collection of interrelated stories about the coming-of-age of Jim Kinneson, future writer. ...more
Sep 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Mosher's interconnected stories about Jim Kinneson and his family are wonderful. They are told from Jim's adolescent point of view overlaid by his middle-aged omniscience. Mosher evokes "place" in the achingly poignant style of Wendell Berry, Jon Hassler, and Garrison Keillor. ...more
Mary Huissen
Jul 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Loved it. Now I want to read the two books that came before this one. Out of order, but no matter
Stephen Payne
Mar 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
In God’s Kingdom, Howard Mosher has continued to develop the rich, nourishing landscape of Kingdom Common, Vermont, teasing a series of morality plays from the beautiful and sometimes savage world about which he writes with such deep passion and authority. There are scenes that elicit powerful and unexpected emotion and others – like the chapter about the local baseball ‘players’ “Moose,” and “Mike-the-moose,” a real moose who attempts to steal first base—that are truly laugh-out-loud funny. Tho ...more
Apr 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
You will have seen many of the components of God's Kingdom before: a coming-of-age story involving a hunt (failed or otherwise), a wise grandfather figure, a busy family, a young and star-crossed romance, and a land outside of time--a land so atmospheric, so evocative, that it becomes a central character in and of itself. The book is structured as a series of interconnected vignettes, a la David Mitchell and others. To be perfectly honest, I spent the first couple of chapters thinking rather imp ...more
Dec 30, 2015 rated it liked it
While there are some good concepts to build a story line in this book, the overall execution or delivery fell short for me. James (Jim) Kinneson III wants to be a writer and pursues the historical facts and truths about his family, community and geograph history. Set in God's Kingdom on the borders of Canada, Maine, Vermont and New Hampshire, the area is rich in history of the Underground Railroad of slaves. An escaped slave, Pliny Templeton, from a tobacco plantation in Kentucky chops off his h ...more
Nov 10, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
Reading a novel by Howard Frank Mosher is like sitting down for a chat with an old and valued friend. I've been a fan since reading his first novel, Disappearances.
This latest in his output is no disappointment.
God's Kingdom (northeast Vermont) is told from the viewpoint of Jim Kinneson, a budding young writer in the 1950s, who absorbs the history of his family from their arrival in the territory in the 1750s down to his time through stories told by his beloved grandfather and others. Hovering a
Nov 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
Stumbled upon this at the library and decided to give it a go. After about fifty pages it really started to click. A wonderful book about how we record history and inter familial relationships. The back drop is rural Vermont mid 20th century as viewed from the teenage boy in the family.
There's a small scene in the book where one of his family members is rewriting the bible and omitting things she doesn't like and adding stuff she'd rather see. While it's a small scene it is somewhat of a metaph
Oct 21, 2015 rated it liked it
It is always a pleasure to submerse myself in Howard Frank Mosher’s Vermont and his lush and evocative descriptions of the “Kingdom”. His Northeast Kingdom novels are filled with well told stories and well drawn characters. There are moments of humor, tragedy, love, and sadness as we watch Jim Kinnison come of age. Another outstanding book in this series.

Thank you to St. Martin’s Press and NetGalley for an advance copy of this book.
Linda Gaines
Nov 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I love Mosher's books about Vermont's Northeast Kingdom. The closeness of the people remind me of Wendell Berry's Port William community. Jim Kinneson studies the family lore of the past and finds lots of prejudice and violence but also people standing up for justice and love.
He goes hunting and fishing with father and grandfather but he can't kill the mighty buck or catch the rainbow trout (to be mounted on a wall --its beautiful colors fading away).
Oct 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This was a beautifully told coming-of-age story set in Vermont (God's Kindgom) in the 1950s. I loved so much about this book, from the history of the Kinneson family to the examples of "choosing to do the right thing" to the love stories and the haunting tragedies.

Won through Goodreads and highly recommended for lovers of historical fiction.
Melissa Acuna
Nov 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
God's Kingdom may be Howard Frank Mosher's best book since A Stranger in the Kingdom. Every sentence in this book is perfectly crafted and draw the reader back to rural Vermont during a time of change in the 1950's.

This is a book that will resonate for generations.
Jan 21, 2018 rated it liked it
I didn’t enjoy this as much as I expected to. Usually I love books set in the remoter parts of the US – in this case north-eastern Vermont – but I found this novel, which is really a series of linked vignettes rather than a sustained narrative, although interesting from an historical point of view, with its cast of white settlers, Native Americans, French-Canadians and escaped slaves from both the past and the present, somehow fell flat in its characterisation, and I failed to engage with any of ...more
Nov 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was such an incredible book! How have I never come across Howard Frank Mosher's books before?! The story is set in God's Kingdom, Vermont, and is a coming-of-age tale mixed with a frank look at racism's ugly footprint in New England. Mosher's use of language of luxurious, rich, vivid - I had to sometimes re-read sentences several times just to fully experience (taste? feel?) the metaphors and adjectives. The stories are warm and heart-felt - some make you laugh, some make you angry and disa ...more
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Howard Frank Mosher was an American author. Over the course of his career, Mr. Mosher published 12 novels, two memoirs and countless essays and book reviews. In addition, his last work of fiction, points North will be published by St. Martin's press in the winter of 2018.

Mosher was a Guggenheim Fellow in 1979. A Stranger In the Kingdom won the New England Book Award for Fiction in 1991, and was l

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