"[Haigh is] an expertnatural storyteller with an acute sense of her characters' humanity." —NewYork Times
"We have the intriguing possibility that the nextgreat American author is already in print." —Fort Worth Star-Telegram
When Sheila McGann setsout to redeem her disgraced brother, a once-beloved Catholic priest in suburbanBoston, her quest will force her to confront cataclysmic truths about herfractured Irish-American family, her beliefs, and, ultimately, herself.Award-winning author Jennifer Haigh follows hercritically acclaimed novels Mrs. Kimbleand The Condition with a captivating,vividly rendered portrait of fraying family ties, and the trials of belief anddevotion, in Faith.
Haigh (Mrs. Kimble) explores the intersections of public scandal and personal tragedy in her superb fourth novel. Set in 2002 amid the sexual abuse crisis that has rocked the Catholic Church, and particularly the Boston archdiocese, Haigh's novel reaches far beneath the headlines to imagine the impact of allegations on one priest's family. Arthur Breen became a priest when such a career path was considered a logical, honorable choice for an intelligent young Catholic man. Sophisticated and worldly in many ways, utterly childlike in others, Arthur is unprepared to cope with secular life when he's accused of abusing a young boy and is subsequently asked to leave his parish. Arthur's younger half-sister, Sheila, in a quasi-omniscient style, narrates the complicated, devastating history that shaped Arthur's life, both personally and spiritually. Although this all-too-plausible story offers a damning commentary on the Church's flaws and its leaders' hubris, Haigh is concerned less with religious faith than with the faith Arthur's family has and loses, and in some cases regains in one another. At its broadest, this is a frank and timely story of familial and institutional heredity; at its most personal, the novel is a devastating portrait of a priest who discovers that he's also a man.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Could not put this book down. The story was moving, heart breaking, and believable. I could not help but feel deep sadness for the characters in the novel and it made you reflect on your own beliefs.
Excellent book, keeps you interested from the first page, and in the end a sad tragic story.
A well crafted story. I highly recommend this book for book clubs or personal readers- you won't be disappointed!