Young Americans abroad in Central Asia find themselves pushed to their limits in these acclaimed, prize-winning stories by one of our most exciting and talented new authors. Combining bleak humor, ironic insight, deep compassion, and unflinching moral and ethical inquiry, Tom Bissell gives us a gripping collection that is both timeless and profoundly relevant to today’s complex world.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
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|Title of eBook: God Lives in St. Petersburg|
|Release Date: 12-18-2007|
|Allowed Countries (hover)|
|Publisher: Knopf Publishing Group|
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|Parent title||God Lives in St....|
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God Lives in St. Petersburg
Chapter OneGraves had been sick for three days when, on the long straight highway between Mazar and Kunduz, a dark blue truck coming toward them shed its rear wheel in a spray of orange-yellow sparks. The wheel, as though excited by its sudden liberty, bounced twice not very high and once very high and hit their windshield with a damp crack. "Christ!" Donk called out from the backseat. The driver, much too late, wrenched on the steering wheel, and they fishtailed and then spun out into the dunes alongside the road. Against one of the higher sandbanks the Corolla slammed to a dusty halt. Sand as soft and pale as flour poured into the partially opened windows. The shattered but still intact windshield sagged like netting. After a moment Donk touched his forehead, his eyebrow bristles as tender as split stitches. Thin watery blood streaked down his fingers.
From the front passenger seat Graves asked if the other three men-Donk, Hassan, the driver-were all right. No one spoke. Graves sighed. "Glad to hear it." He gave his dune-pinned door two small impotent outward pushes, then spent the next few moments staring out the splintery windshield. The air-freshener canister that had been suckered to the windshield lay quietly frothing lilac-scented foam in Graves's lap. The spun-around Corolla now faced Kunduz, the city they had been trying to escape. "I'm glad I'm not a superstitious man," Graves said at last. The driver's hands were still gripped around the steering wheel.
Donk climbed out on the Corolla's open side, cupping his throbbing eye socket and leaning forward, watching his blood patter onto the sand in perfect red globules. He did not h...