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God Bless Americana [Paperback]

Charles Phoenix
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Product details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Graphic Arts Books (April 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1558686444
  • ISBN-13: 978-1558686441
  • Product Dimensions: 21.3 x 25.5 x 0.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,729,812 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
God Bless Americana is a retro vacation slide show tour of the USA. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars God Bless Americana 31 Dec 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
If you are interested in the 'American Dream' consumer era of the 1950's and 60's, this is the book for you. The era when America was a land of plenty and the image being sold to the world was that this is what you could achieve, before the tide turned atthe end of the 1960s and the Vietnam era going into the 70's depression arrived.

Author Charles Phoenix by chance came across a box of old colour slides in a thrift shop and that started a passionate collecting hobby, some of those great slides are presented here with captions of the places they were taken at.

The pictures are an important piece of American cultural history, just look deep into each picture, at the cars, the fashion, the buildings, each facet caught on film like prehistoric insects in Amber for eternity.

I purchased the book because I like the era and also because I am currently writing a book based in this time and the pictures give you inspiration and immediate visual reference.

The pictures are a nice large size, the colour is great on most that are Kodachrome slides and the colour looks as brilliant as the moment the shutter closed and captured the scene.

Although amateur photographs, the quirkyness of some subjects and angles should be of interest.

All in all a great book, mine was a used copy but very pleased with it, I would also recommend if you are interested in the subject in general terms, Wayne McAllister's book on architecture, he designed a lot of those classic diners in the Googie and Populuxe style of Moderne design. I also recently bought Southern California in the 50's, both from Amazon, as the books yielded a lot of useful inormation for my work.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.9 out of 5 stars  7 reviews
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hey that's not fair 4 Dec 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Obviously at other reviewer never took a car-trip vacation with his or her parents. I am a fan of Phoenix's work (So California in the '50s is his best), but I think I'm objective when I say this book captures a slice of Americana that many people would like to forget and the rest of us want to enjoy. It's funny and it's poignant at the same time. Don't be dissuaded by that other review. This is a book with charm.
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Funny and fascinating 23 Dec 2002
By Caitlin - Published on Amazon.com
This is the real deal. People's actual vacation photos of the America I wish was still out there to see on a road trip. The pix capture the genuine feel of the times without sentimentality or false nostalgia and Phoenix's commentary is a laugh-out-loud counterpart to the images. This is the best kind of affectionate satire. Hilarious, amazing stuff.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fun but shallow 4 Sep 2008
By J. R. Dudley - Published on Amazon.com
Phoenix has a good sense of everyday humor, and in the millions of Kodachromes Americans shot from 1940 to 1980 there is plenty of material to make fun of. But I think he missed an opportunity for a more serious look at the era of the home slide show, the role of Kodachrome in preserving American history and the need to preserve potential treasures in our attics and basements. I also have to say that I have sold many slides that were of better quality than those used in the book. What I got from this book was an urge to do one myself.
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed 16 Dec 2012
By Steve in Memphis - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Good concept, but poor execution. The pictures look like the worst vacation pictures that weren't good enough to make it into the album. They look like the pictures that you might find on that awkward family photos website.
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun! Fun! Fun! !!!!FUN!!!! 26 Dec 2011
By Phil Commander - Published on Amazon.com
The photos are fun to look at...and interesting...the authors funny comments range from groaners, to chuckles, to laughs, to honest to goodness belly laughs! The only dissapointment I had reading it was that I was 100% sober...but still laughing my butt off!
I read this book in one sitting and plan on reading it again with a friend...and after a few beers. It makes you wish you could walk outside and be in the world the photos portray...and when you finish it you honest to God feel like you just got back from a vacation filled with laughs and crazy sights. Talk about a real escape from reality for a while!

Seriously, this book is fun! Put this one out on your coffee table when you are having a party and it will be the hit of the party...trust me...unless your friends are the kind of people who don't have a sense of humor...like a few of the others that reviewed this book.
One thing I love about his comments is that they poked fun at the people in the photos without ever Making Fun of them...he just kinda busts on them and if one of them was your mom you'd be laughing along with the author...nothing meanspirited.

Now I'm gonna go get a few beers and start reading it again!!!
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