Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “God Save Texas: A Journey Into the Soul of the Lone Star State” as Want to Read:
God Save Texas: A Journey Into the Soul of the Lone Star State
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

God Save Texas: A Journey Into the Soul of the Lone Star State

4.01  ·  Rating details ·  4,659 ratings  ·  691 reviews
With humor and the biting insight of a native, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Looming Tower explores the history, culture, and politics of Texas, while holding the stereotypes up for rigorous scrutiny.

God Save Texas is a journey through the most controversial state in America. It is a red state in the heart of Trumpland that hasn't elected a Democrat to a statewi
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published April 17th 2018 by Knopf Publishing Group
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.01  · 
Rating details
 ·  4,659 ratings  ·  691 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of God Save Texas: A Journey Into the Soul of the Lone Star State
Hank Stuever
Dec 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What a treat to have read "God Save Texas" after reading Sam Anderson's "Boom Town" (about Oklahoma City) and Lou Berney's "November Road" (a novel about the JFK assassination in Dallas that's also partly set in Oklahoma). It's soooo nice to take such deep, thoughtful and intelligent dives into MY part of the world instead of all the East Coast-preoccupied literature out there. (Yes, I live in Washington, D.C., but I was born and raised in Oklahoma City and lived and worked for a few years in Au ...more
Elyse  Walters
May 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Audiobook....narrated by the author, Lawrence Wright, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for book “The Looming Tower”.

This is my first book by Lawrence Wright....
.....which is entertaining and informative....’fascinating info.’

I sure wouldn’t hesitate reading any one of Wright’s other books — each one are interesting topics & issues: Twins and what they tell us....The Terror Years from Al Qaeda to the Islamic State....Scientology.....animal welfare, “ The Right of Mice”.....etc.

Besides learning tha
Joe Valdez
Jun 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
My introduction to Lawrence Wright is God Save Texas: A Journey Into the Soul of the Lone Star State. Anyone who savors long reads in Texas Monthly or the New Yorker should feel right at home with this terrific book published in 2018 and with Wright, a screenwriter/ playwright/ Pulitzer Prize winning journalist who's contributed pieces to those two magazines. Wright grew up in Dallas in the '60s and with his own family, relocated from Atlanta to Austin in 1979. His perspective is that of a nativ ...more
This is a fast and fabulous, smart and funny read…the kind that reads so effortlessly because the author has a lifetime of writing experience. There is a big-hearted generosity in Wright’s view of Texas, though he doesn’t hesitate to point out personalities or policies that diminish what he believes the state could be. Wright lived many years in Austin, the big blue liberal heart of Texas, a city that attracted so many people to what the city once was that it no longer resembles that attractive ...more
May 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
With summer approaching, I find myself drawn to books set in warmer locations. Each summer I also search for a travelogue that takes me along the open roads. Although not exactly a travelogue, when a group in the nonfiction book club started reading G-D Save Texas by former Pulitzer winning and long time Texas resident Lawrence Wright, I was moved to join them. Wright takes his readers on a journey through the state in a way that only a Texan can. The rest of the readers in my group happen to be ...more
Jan 28, 2019 rated it it was ok
If you have ever had a friend who can´t stop bragging about himself, begins the conversation following one topic just for you to realize quickly that he has meanwhile slipped into an unrelated digression, constantly dropping names regardless of what people around him talk about, then you know how it feels to read "God Save Texas: A Journey Into the Soul of the Lone Star State" by Lawrence Wright.
I was so excited to read about Texas because I felt like this was such a brilliant field to explore
Chantal Lyons
Jan 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
If America interests you in any way, you'll almost certainly get something out of "God Save Texas". As an Americanophile who recently visited Dallas and Austin, reading the book was fascinating and enjoyable.

I'm afraid I've never heard of Lawrence Wright, but his diverse career and connections afford him the most intimate of insights into the artistic and political worlds of Texas - and beyond, in the case of presidential politics, since Wright has known the Bushes well for all his life. This fa
May 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites, reviews
I have learned so many things about Houston`s history and Texas from this book. I liked it very much. It is a book that explains, embraces and forewarns about the TEXAN evolution. Anyone with an interest in Texas or US politics will enjoy it very much. I love reading books like this when the narrative flows effortlessly, and you can stop and sip your tea and do your thing and come back and continue where you've left with ease. In this one, one can additionally see the wide open spaces which many ...more
Jun 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 4-stars, nonfiction
A nice glimpse into the current cultural, political, and social environment of the Lone Star State. Wright also includes some interesting historical tidbits and introduces us to several fascinating and oftentimes hilarious characters. I laughed a lot while reading this.

Not just for Texans, either. Anyone interested in learning about the cultural melting pot that is Texas would enjoy this one. It’s a much more complicated and, dare I say, interesting place than it’s reputation would suggest. Exc
Jan 12, 2018 rated it liked it
Oh boy
Jill Mackin
Sep 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
A love letter to Texas. Very informative and full of quirky Texas personalities. Enjoyed it immensely.
Jul 26, 2018 rated it it was ok
Hmmmm! Can I say that I choose this book from the ratings and the trailer. And that it was on the shelf at my home library. That too, as well. And that I have visited Texas about 5 or 6 times in the last 10 years (every time in winter). Those are my disclaimers. And that I love the South and the people I have meet have been tops (above average in interchange, kindness, service when required, happy quotient etc.) and also intelligent in conversations. That's my experience.

This book is written in
May 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Lawrence Wright’s first rate new book, God Save Texas: A Journey into the Soul of the Lone Star State, is a clear-eyed, yet affectionate exploration of America’s 28th state which Wright also calls home. It can be said that Texas (with it’s political unrest, populism ideology, and general cantankerousness) is a reflection of the United States of America as a whole. This is not unlike how my wife says I am a reflection of Hugh Jackman.

Texas has a kind of cultural identity that makes it like no ot
Ian Cook Westgate
May 04, 2018 rated it liked it
I’m not sure what the point of this book was. Each chapter tends to embrace a different city or concept. But then the organization is all over the place. In one section, you might get a fascinating political/sociological look at some major thing that happened in Texan history. The next, you’ll get some interesting but ultimately irrelevant fluff.

It is hard to describe without giving a few examples. For one, in the chapter about Texan presidents, the author randomly spends what felt like a third
Aug 31, 2018 rated it liked it
This book is really well-written, funny, and interesting. It's about Texas and it's about America. But it's more about Wright and Wright's texas than it is about Texas and America. For example, when he talks about Mexicans, he only talks about the border and the undocumented Mexicans. But Mexicans have occupied Texas since before Wright's people have. Brownsville, Houston--all over Texas. Why not talk about their Texas too? Or the native Americans?
Jay Pruitt
May 27, 2018 marked it as stopped-reading
Liberal perspective from author who trashes all Texans but those living in left-leaning Austin.
God Save Texas: A Journey into the Soul of the Lone Star State was a delightful memoir by Pulitzer prize winner author Lawrence Wright and a tribute to the state of Texas, and how his life is inextricably woven, not only to the history of this country, but to the state of Texas.

Growing up in the southwest, the state of Texas has always been an interesting part of history of the United States. Lawrence Wright keeps one interested as he talks about his childhood in Texas, living in many places in
Ian Holmes
May 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a marvelous book about the beauty and contradictions of Texas. It's part memoir, part collection of essays, but all Texas. Makes me a little homesick, but as it it Texas, it also makes me a little sick.
Michelle Lancaster
Apr 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Lawrence Wright
God Save Texas: A Journey into the Soul of the Lone Star State
Alfred A. Knopf
Hardcover, 978-0-5255-2010-4, (also available as an e-book, on Audible, and as a large-print paperback), 368 pgs., $27.95
April 17, 2018

In a former life, I was a paralegal for an international law firm in Dallas. During a conversation with a lawyer from Philadelphia, he told me something astonishing. According to him, neither does Pennsylvania require years of state history in
Sep 23, 2018 rated it it was ok
This book reads like a collection of vignettes hastily put together at the suggestion of Mr Wright's editor at The New Yorker. There is no attempt at analysis. It has more of a feeling of "let me tell you about this and now let me tell you about that because I've got to make this a full-length book." What a missed opportunity. In addition, I listened to the New York Times Book Review podcast about "God Save Texas" and attended Mr Wright's talk in Dallas when he was promoting it and he shared exa ...more
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Lawrence Wright is a storyteller, a magical storyteller. I'm so happy he chose our oddity of a place to make his home because this is the place he has chosen to tell stories about.

That's what this book is about. Stories upon stories upon stories. All set in Texas, and every story with a thread or two of such zaniness that you wouldn't believe it if you were a responsible citizen and saw it on Fox News. Not just little odd stories, mind you, of odd people he happened upon in the Texas backwaters
Jill Meyer
Apr 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Lawrence Wright is a noted writer of non-fiction - his book, "The Looming Tower" was a Pulitzer Prize winner - and one work of fiction. As an almost life-long resident of Texas, his latest book, "God Save Texas: A Journey into the Soul of the Lone Star State", is a journey through the history of the state as well as a bit of a journey through his life. He and his family have lived decades in Texas - mostly in Austin - and he's lived though some of the most important events since 1950. His book i ...more
Chris Ladd
Jul 13, 2018 rated it it was ok
Let's be clear - It is difficult to write about Texas. Render it too literally and the work comes off like a caricature. Let yourself be seduced by its romanticized lore and you've just produced another dimestore Western. Try too hard to explain it without stepping on any toes, and you end up writing a story about yourself. That's what happened in God Save Texas.

The book skirted the hard stuff, retreating into namedropping anecdotes when the material wanted to go deeper. The format, as a collect
Mar 29, 2019 rated it liked it
Where are the BBQ recipes?

Okay, all kidding aside I did enjoy most of this book about my home state but I thought it would be deeper. What about the everyday people, food, and beautiful places (besides Big Bend) Texas has to offer? I did learn a few things I didn’t know like Texans can openly carry swords. LOL. I’m yet to see someone do that. The historical aspects and the chapter on Houston are the best parts of the book IMHO. This book does contain a lot about Wright himself and heavy handed o
Jun 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Wright is most remembered for his Pulitzer Prize-winning The Looming Tower, about the rise of al-Qaida. But, he has also written film scripts, plays, and is a regular contributor to The New Yorker. He seems to have an insatiable curiosity about people, places and all things Texan. He has traveled throughout the State and is on a first-name basis with a plethora of Texan notables.
God Save Texas is an engaging travelogue that is part memoir, part history and part journalistic reporting. He covers
Jerrie (redwritinghood)
Sep 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
A well-written, personal look at the Lonestar state. Wright, a native Texan, looks at the state’s history to try to understand its present. It is clear that Wright both loves and is often frustrated by his home state. He delves deep into the politics of the state, which is quickly becoming one of the most populous, and therefor politically relevant, in the country. The author explores Texas’ strange mix of red and blue - it’s a red state, but there are islands of blue captures by cities, such as ...more
Jan 09, 2019 rated it it was ok
This book is not a book about Texas. It is a disjointed memoir about the author's complicated relationship with his home state. With a whole lot of Texas politics and opinions thrown in. I did not see an accurate description of the Texas I have lived in over the last few decades adequately represented, and I suspect most Texans will not think this is a true representation of their home state. Disappointing, since his other books are so well researched and taught me so much.
Sydney Young
My choice for my April - Paris Life column. Loved it as a Texan, but I think its way bigger than that. Will post my review here after a month or so. In the meantime, just know that it is not to miss.

Also, thank you to the publisher's for an ARC so that I could give an honest review of it for the magazine during its publication month.
Aug 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
A delightful and at time frustrating journey into what it is to be Texan and what Texas means to the world at large. Part-memoir and part social history, Lawrence Wright has crafted a book that will be referenced for years to come.
Helen Mountford
May 20, 2018 rated it did not like it
I could not figure out what the point of this book is supposed to be. It’s just a bunch of unconnected episodes of something paired with a lot of name dropping.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Big Wonderful Thing: A History of Texas
  • Goodbye to a River: A Narrative
  • Boom Town: The Fantastical Saga of Oklahoma City, Its Chaotic Founding, Its Apocalyptic Weather, Its Purloined Basketball Team, and the Dream of Becoming a World-class Metropolis
  • The Gay Place
  • As Texas Goes...: How the Lone Star State Hijacked the American Agenda
  • Working: Researching, Interviewing, Writing
  • Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors, and the Drug Company that Addicted America
  • Spying on the South: Travels with Frederick Law Olmsted in a Fractured Land
  • The Gates of the Alamo
  • Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland
  • In a Narrow Grave: Essays on Texas
  • The Fifth Risk: Undoing Democracy
  • American Prison: A Reporter's Undercover Journey into the Business of Punishment
  • The Soul of America: The Battle for Our Better Angels
  • Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents
  • These Truths: A History of the United States
  • Cult of Glory: The Bold and Brutal History of the Texas Rangers
  • Prophetic City: Houston on the Cusp of a Changing America
See similar books…
There is more than one author with this name

Lawrence Wright is a Pulitzer Prize-winning American author, screenwriter, staff writer for The New Yorker magazine, and fellow at the Center for Law and Security at the New York University School of Law. He is a graduate of Tulane University, and for two years taught at the American University in Cairo in Egypt.

Wright graduated from Woodrow Wilson High

Related Articles

If you haven't heard of record-smashing singer and songwriter Mariah Carey, is there any hope for you? Who else has sold more than 200 million...
51 likes · 22 comments
“In every generation until mine, most of humanity lived with the night sky. As people began moving into cities and using more illumination, the sky gradually disappeared. There must be a corresponding loss of wonder without the stars to remind us where we stand in creation.” 2 likes
“There is a lesson to be drawn from Houston’s career as a populist leader. He would twice be elected president of the Republic of Texas, which his decisive victory had secured. After Texas entered the Union, on December 29, 1845, Houston became one of the first two U.S. senators from the state of Texas. He clearly envisioned the disaster that the proposed Southern Confederacy would inflict on the nation and on Texas: “I see my beloved South go down in the unequal contest, in a sea of blood and smoking ruin.” In 1860, on the eve of the Civil War, he was elected governor as a Unionist, but the secessionists were more powerful. Houston’s faith in populism as a force for progress was shattered. “Are we ready to sell reality for a phantom?” Houston vainly asked, as propagandists and demagogues fanned the clamor for secession with deluded visions of victory. To those who demanded that he join the Confederacy, Houston responded, “I refuse to take this oath…I love Texas too well to bring civil strife and bloodshed upon her.” Houston was evicted as governor, and the bloodshed” 1 likes
More quotes…