Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Book Review - Faith: A Novel
It is the spring of 2002 and a perfect storm has hit Boston. Across the city's archdiocese, trusted priests have been accused of the worst possible betrayal of the souls in their care. In Faith, Jennifer Haigh explores the fallout for one devout family, the McGanns.
Estranged for years from her difficult and demanding relatives, Sheila McGann has remained close to her older brother Art, the popular, dynamic pastor of a large suburban parish. When Art finds himself at the center of the maelstrom, Sheila returns to Boston, ready to fight for him and his reputation. What she discovers is more complicated than she imagined. Her strict, lace-curtain-Irish mother is living in a state of angry denial. Sheila's younger brother Mike, to her horror, has already convicted his brother in his heart. But most disturbing of all is Art himself, who persistently dodges Sheila's questions and refuses to defend himself.
As the scandal forces long-buried secrets to surface, Faith explores the corrosive consequences of one family's history of silence—and the resilience its members ultimately find in forgiveness. Throughout, Haigh demonstrates how the truth can shatter our deepest beliefs—and restore them. A gripping, suspenseful tale of one woman's quest for the truth, Faith is a haunting meditation on loyalty and family, doubt and belief. Elegantly crafted, sharply observed, this is Jennifer Haigh's most ambitious novel to date.
I LOVED this book! I couldn't put it down! In 2002, I was living in Brighton, right down the street from the archdiocese, when the real scandal erupted. Everyday the Herald & Globe had something about it in their papers. It was one of the reasons, this book interested me from the start. I was so focused on thinking wheter he did it or not that the book had an element of surprise that I didn't expect. As someone who use to be a member of the Catholic religion, much of what they talked about was very familiar. It was more focused on the family dynamics of the McGann family then the workings of the Catholic church. It is told by sister Shelia but the author does a wonderful job telling the story of each family member. You will find yourself unable to stop reading!!