"God Bless America by US author Mark SaFranko is the third instalment in the highly acclaimed Max Zajack trilogy, following hot on the heels of underground classics Hating Olivia and Lounge Lizard. All three novels are published by independent UK publisher Murder Slim Press and all three contain some of the finest writing to be found outside the rotting carcass that is the mainstream publishing industry."
-- Joseph Ridgwell, 3am Magazine
God Bless America follows the troubled childhood of Max Zajack, Mark SaFranko's literary alter-ego. Thrown into a world of a tempestuous immigrant family and a controlling Catholic school, Max sees only two means of escape...death or madness.
As Max spirals down through psychotic teachers, wild arguments, lousy jobs, vomit, fear and blood. How can anyone survive? Well, maybe in realising the bleak humour of the whole damned thing....
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Mark SaFranko's stories have appeared in dozens of magazines and journals internationally, including the renowned "Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine" and "The Savage Kick". He was cited in "Best American Mystery Stories 2000" and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. In 2005 he won the Frank O'Connor award. Mister SaFranko is also a playwright. "The Bitch-Goddess" was selected Best Play of the Village Gate One-Act Festival in New York in 1992. An evening of his one-acts which included "The Bitch-Goddess" recently made its European debut at the Derry Playhouse in Northern Ireland. The production then moved south to the Cork Arts Theatre to strong reviews.
Another play, "The Promise", was produced at the Millenium Forum in Derry in June, 2003. Other plays have also been seen at such New York venues as the Samuel Beckett Theater, Belmont Italian American Playhouse, the Harold Clurman Theater, the Creative Place Theater, Wings Theater, the Madison Avenue Theater, and the Riant Theater.
As an actor he has appeared in several independent films, including "A Better Place", "Shoot George", and "The Road From Erebus". His screenplay for his novel "The Favor" was optioned in 2009 by the German filmmaker, Michael A. Grimm.
His previous novels are "Hopler's Statement" and "The Favor", both available through all the dotcoms.
His subsequent four novels - "Hating Olivia", "Lounge Lizard", "Loners" and "God Bless America" - were all released by Murder Slim Press.
"If you add God Bless America to the other Max Zajack novels Hating Olivia and Lounge Lizard, then SaFranko has produced a superbly crafted and well-written trilogy - worthy successor to John Fante's The Bandini Quartet."
-- Steve Finbow, Bookmunch
"God Bless America will be called a Tropic of Capricorn for the twenty-first century, but SaFranko's is a completely original voice, searing, honest, unafraid. To me this is by far more interesting and well-done than Miller, hands down."
-- Mary Dearborn, Author of The Happiest Man Alive: A Biography of Henry Miller
"SaFranko's latest seizes the reader by the short hairs and yanks until the tears begin to flow. Think of Bukowski's bitter sweet Ham on Rye and Harry Crews' A Childhood: the Biography of a Place, only more unrelenting and better."
-- Zsolt Alapi, The Loose Canon
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