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Download American Salvage Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample American Salvage Audiobook, by Bonnie Jo Campbell Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,021 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Bonnie Jo Campbell Narrator: Jeffrey Brick, Stevie Ray Dallimore, Andrea Gallo, Ken Marks Publisher: Recorded Books, LLC Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: April 2009 ISBN: 9781449808983
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“These short stories approach their subjects from an array of perspectives, but what they share is freshness, surprise, and a compulsion to plumb some absolute extremes of American existence.”—National Book Award citation

American Salvage is rich with local color and peopled with rural characters who love and hate extravagantly. They know how to fix cars and washing machines, how to shoot and clean game, and how to cook up methamphetamine, but they have not figured out how to prosper in the twenty-first century. Through the complex inner lives of working-class characters, Bonnie Jo Campbell illustrates the desperation of post-industrial America, where wildlife, jobs, and whole ways of life go extinct, and the people have no choice but to live off what is left behind.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Readers…will feel salvaged and transformed by this gutsy book’s fierce compassion.”

    Booklist (starred review)
  • “Campbell’s an American voice—two parts healthy fear, one part awe, one part irony, one part realism.”

    Los Angeles Times

  • “In these stories about cold, lonely, meth-drenched, working-class Michigan life, there’s a certain beauty reaching something like the sublimity of a D. H. Lawrence story.”

    Chicago Tribune

  • A 2009 National Book Award Finalist
  • A 2009 National Book Critics Circle Award Finalist

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lawrence | 2/20/2014

    " This is not the Michigan of Ann Arbor or of the resort towns for Chicago get aways. This is the Michigan of small town and farm poor. These are the stories of those barely coping with everyday life, those who barely get by in the new century. Tired, wounded, deparate, abused, abusing, the characters' strong narration and individual voices come through each of these stories, reaching out for understanding, shelter, one last chance, all so they don't disappear as inevitably everything else around them - the very way of life, even the land and the animals that used to thrive there - seem to be. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Nancy Scott | 2/17/2014

    " I loved these stories--the fictional version of Nickel and Dimed : these stories are about people *not* getting by in America. Beautifully written, too. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ethel Rohan | 2/15/2014

    " Again and again as I read this collection, I thought this is how I want to write, thought this is why I want to write. A few of the stories perhaps pale next to the gems, but overall this is an excellent, searing collection. 4.5 stars. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Beth | 2/4/2014

    " This was a moving collection of stories about people who are tired and overwhelmed by the circumstances of their lives and their labor-intensive relationships, but who keep trying. Most of the characters need help but refuse to ask for or accept it. There were some really great last sentences that hit you like a punch. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 g | 2/3/2014

    " Excellent short stories of impoverished down-and-outs in rural Michigan. The stories are slightly less than satisfying because they are so short, but it says something about Campbell's storytelling abilities that each story weaves such a memorable and compelling spell; I'd love novel-length versions or continuations of each. It's gritty and tender, often at the same time, with nuanced characters who are convincing and emotionally complex, often desperately hopeful in spite of bleak surroundings and circumstances. Men, women, teenagers, children--all are believable and fully realized. Favorites include "The Trespasser" (the chilling and wondrous four-page collection opener about a family whose house has been rearranged by a young meth addict), "Family Reunion," and "Bringing Belle Home." "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Angela | 1/31/2014

    " Beautiful writing: gritty stories of rural America. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Hlry | 1/17/2014

    " at first this book really depressed me, but then i got back into the swing of what life is like when you are poor and trashy. then it just seemed like normal life. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Timothy | 1/16/2014

    " wonderful character development. perfect title for the players written about. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Linda Cohen | 1/12/2014

    " Reminds me of Knockemstiff as far as subject matter but not so bleak and depressing. Really looking forward to her new novel. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jen | 1/5/2014

    " I wish this look at the lives of Michigan residents was more uplifting...but I think Campbell does an amazing job with characterization in the short story genre. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Alisa | 12/5/2013

    " Extremely likable stories about extremely unlikable people. Campbell's writing is gorgeous, and she has a true talent for making the reader understand her characters. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Cindy | 8/6/2013

    " This author is going to be at the Otsego District Public Library on Tuesday May 25th at 7pm. Picked up the book only so I could attend and was floored by how real these stories were. I'm not usually a short story reader, but she grabbed me and held my attention all the way through. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jenn | 7/12/2013

    " I love the snapshots that short stories can provide. This is a book of snapshots, some gorgeous, some haunting, some ugly, but all equally memorable and detailed. Very much worth the read. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Joe | 6/7/2013

    " Outstanding collection of stories. Each is different enough from the rest to show inventiveness, while they retain the author's voice. Looking forward to reading the rest of her work. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Shannon | 4/12/2013

    " I keep forgetting how much I HATE short stories. This book was great, other than I wanted it to go on and the stories just end so..... abruptly. Sure, the stories were interesting and the writing was fantastic, but yeah...still a disappointment. :( "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Erin | 1/29/2012

    " interesting look at rural life "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 John | 1/13/2012

    " Short stories aren't my thing so I moved on. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Mindy | 11/23/2011

    " Gritty and raw. Campbell's descriptions of her characters and their situations hit you in the gut, just like she intends it. Well written, just not my style. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kiely | 10/20/2011

    " I have read about 5 stories so far. Gota say the first was the most gripping. The people in these stories are so real, they are individuals with flaws who are all trying really hard just to make it work- it makes you appreciate just being.... Awesome book "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mike McQuillian | 8/4/2011

    " These stories will kick your ass and take your lunch money. Worth a read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Anissa | 6/28/2011

    " The characters ran together and the portrayal of Michigan focused on one population. It did keep my interest though. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Amy | 6/20/2011

    " Best collection of short stories I've ever read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Michelle | 6/1/2011

    " That first story is so intense "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Linda | 4/30/2011

    " Reminds me of Knockemstiff as far as subject matter but not so bleak and depressing. Really looking forward to her new novel. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Shannon | 4/28/2011

    " I keep forgetting how much I HATE short stories. This book was great, other than I wanted it to go on and the stories just end so..... abruptly. Sure, the stories were interesting and the writing was fantastic, but yeah...still a disappointment. :( "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Peter | 3/27/2011

    " Incredible collection of short stories. Perhaps a 2nd or 3rd cousin to a winters bone genre. But as we are talking about white trash and crystal meth here its tough to distinguish whose been having sex with who and who is legally related. Wonderful read though "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Timothy | 1/12/2011

    " wonderful character development. perfect title for the players written about. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ethel | 1/11/2011

    " Again and again as I read this collection, I thought this is how I want to write, thought this is why I want to write. A few of the stories perhaps pale next to the gems, but overall this is an excellent, searing collection. 4.5 stars. "

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About the Author
Author Bonnie Jo Campbell

Bonnie Jo Campbell is the author of the novel Once Upon a River. She was a 2009 National Book Award finalist and National Book Critics Circle Award finalist for her collection of stories American Salvage, which won the Foreword Book of the Year award for short fiction. She is also author of the novel Q Road and the story collection Women & Other Animals. She’s received the AWP Award for Short Fiction, a Pushcart Prize, and the Eudora Welty Prize, and she has been awarded a 2011 Guggenheim Fellowship from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation.

About the Narrators

Andrea Gallo is an audiobook narrator whose works include Ungifted by Gordan Korman, The Nosy Neighbor by Fern Michaels, Kings of the Earth by John Clinch, and In Search of Eden by Linda Nichols, among many others.

Ken Marks is an actor/narrator with almost thirty years experience in New York City and beyond. He is an Earphones Award Winner for his narration of The High Country by Williard Wyman, and currently he can be seen on Broadway as Uncle Ben in the hit musical Spiderman: Turn Off the Dark.