God Land: A Story of Faith, Loss, and Renewal in Middle America

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Product Details

Indiana University Press
5.9 X 9.1 X 0.6 inches | 0.9 pounds

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About the Author

Lyz Lenz has been published in the New York Times, Buzzfeed, Washington Post, The Guardian, ESPN, Marie Claire, Mashable, Salon, and more. She is also author of Belabored: A VIndication of the Rights of Pregnant Women and has an essay in the anthology Not That Bad: Dispatches from Rape Culture edited by Roxane Gay. Lenz holds an MFA in creative writing from Lesley University and is a contributing writer to the Columbia Journalism Review.


God Land is a courageous narrative account of the religious and political divides that threaten to rip America down its middle.

-- "Foreword Reviews"

This work will resonate with any readers interested in understanding American landscapes where white, evangelical Christianity dominates both politics and culture.

-- "Publishers Weekly"

[Lenz's] sharp, insightful prose and deep compassion help illuminate many facets of a complicated region and its ties to Christianity. And like the people she meets, Lenz can't quite give up her stubborn longing for a big-hearted faith and an even bigger God. The result is an incisive, sober-eyed yet hopeful look at a vital aspect of American culture.

-- "Shelf Awareness"

Lenz holds light to the hypocrisy she finds. And her overall conclusions -- that so much of this boils down to white supremacy and white privilege -- is not what I was expecting from this book, but so helpful to me. By no means is Lenz, a middle class white woman, the first to point out white supremacy in American Christianity. But I found the structure of her arguments incredibly compelling and straightforward, for me, also an upper middle class white woman.

-- "She Can't Stop Reading"

God Land is a gritty, insightful tour guide into some of the realities of the American Midwest. In this highly readable book, journalist Lyz Lenz provides her reader with a window into her own lived experiences as an Iowa transplant, a victim of sexist evangelical church cultures, a divorcee and a mother--a woman entangled with broader cultural histories of white Protestant America, nostalgia, and loss in the heartland. . . . Highly recommended.

--Kristy Nabhan-Warren "Indiana Magazine of History"