What in God's Name: A Novel
  • Alternative view 1 of What in God's Name: A Novel
  • Alternative view 2 of What in God's Name: A Novel

What in God's Name: A Novel

3.9 10
by Simon Rich
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

God decides to close up shop on Earth — unless two idealistic angels can make a miracle happen

Welcome to Heaven, Inc., the grossly mismanaged corporation in the sky. For as long as anyone can remember, the founder and CEO (known in some circles as "God") has been phoning it in. Lately, he's been spending most of his time on the golf course. And when he does

Overview

God decides to close up shop on Earth — unless two idealistic angels can make a miracle happen

Welcome to Heaven, Inc., the grossly mismanaged corporation in the sky. For as long as anyone can remember, the founder and CEO (known in some circles as "God") has been phoning it in. Lately, he's been spending most of his time on the golf course. And when he does show up at work, it's not to resolve wars or end famines, but to Google himself and read what humans have been blogging about him.

When God decides to retire (to pursue his lifelong dream of opening an Asian Fusion restaurant), he also decides to destroy Earth. His employees take the news in stride, except for Craig and Eliza, two underpaid angels in the lowly Department of Miracles. Unlike their boss, Craig and Eliza love their jobs - uncapping city fire hydrants on hot days, revealing lost keys in snow banks - and they refuse to accept that earth is going under.

The angels manage to strike a deal with their boss. He'll call off his Armageddon, if they can solve their toughest miracle yet: getting the two most socially awkward humans on the planet to fall in love. With doomsday fast approaching, and the humans ignoring every chance for happiness thrown their way, Craig and Eliza must move heaven and earth to rescue them - and the rest of us, too.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
New Yorker humorist Rich sets up his second novel (after Elliot Allagash) like one of his “Shouts & Murmurs” pieces. The conceit this time: God truly created man in his own feckless image: “With that whole mankind thing?” the CEO of Heaven Inc. admits, “I bit off way more than I could chew,” and decides to destroy the Earth and finally realize his lifelong dream of opening an Asian-American restaurant. Only Craig and Eliza, two angels working in the Department of Miracles, seem to care, so God tells them if they can answer just one prayer in a month, he’ll keep the Earth open for business. Unfortunately, the challenge is to unite Sam Katz and Laura Potts, two pining, painfully shy 23-year-olds living blocks apart in Manhattan, acquaintances whose chance encounters, so far, have been “worse than when Lincoln gets shot.” Prohibited from doing anything the humans could perceive as supernatural, the angels’ meddling is restricted to dream-work, iPhone hacking, traffic signal tampering, weather manipulation and, in overweight Sam’s case, a botulism attack. But at month’s end, the two—like Craig and Eliza in their own budding romance—must make their own moves. Humanity depends upon it. Agent: Daniel Greenberg, the Levine Greenberg Literary Agency. (Aug.)
Library Journal
Founder and CEO of Heaven, Inc., a bored God is about to ditch Earth when two starry-eyed angels from the Department of Miracles intervene. If they can convince Earth's two most socially maladjusted souls to fall in love, then the planet will be saved. Former president of the Harvard Lampoon, a four-time Emmy nominee for his writing on Saturday Night Live, Rich has credentials in the Department of Laughs.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780316133746
Publisher:
Little, Brown and Company
Publication date:
08/20/2013
Pages:
227
Sales rank:
733,391
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.70(d)

Meet the Author

Simon Rich "is still the freshest, funniest new writer today," according to the Chicago Sun-Times. He has written comedy for the New Yorker, Pixar, Saturday Night Live, the Believer, and various movie studios. He's the author of two collections, Free-Range Chickens and Ant Farm. His first novel, Elliot Allagash, was optioned for a film by Jason Reitman. Rich lives, predictably, in Brooklyn.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >

What in God's Name: A Novel 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
BHenricksen More than 1 year ago
The setting is heaven, a bureaucracy with a zillion departments, one in charge of small miracles, another in charge of sorting through prayers, and third . . . and so on. God, though, is too often on the golf course and plans to give up on earth entirely. Two industrious angels set out to change His mind. There is no mean-spirited assault on religion here, just light fun. But the bureaucracy joke wears thin all too soon.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is best book I have read in forever & it the 4 th book I have read this week. It lots of fun. It would make a perfect romance comedy for Hollywood. Somethong even my husband would watch. It pokes fun at God & humanity without being offensive. It is worth the money!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Too short! I might disagree with the theology but it's a great story.
AH-Writer-Teacher More than 1 year ago
As we all now expect from Rich, there's plenty of broad, intelligent (and genuinely funny) humor here. There's also sweetness and poignance. I know the novel hasn't even been officially released yet, but I wonder how long it will take before someone from the Appatow clan adapts it into the best romantic comedy ever. Hopefully, this is already in the works.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sweet book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
different intake on how God runs the world. would not reread it or recommend it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Interesting premise. Think it would have made a better short story. Some portions seemed strained. On the whole it was light "summer" fare.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A funny read that was really enjoyable! Glad I bought this book!