Approaching Eden: Adam & Eve in Popular Culture

This theologically rich book is now available; I have read it and wrote a blurb for the cover:"Approaching Eden is a gift to anyone attempting to bring faith and life closer in a world filled with mediated stories: in this case, tales and images influenced by the Biblical creation narrative of Genesis 1-3. Sanders is fearless in her critical analysis but never cavalier. Her prose is energetic and accessible; her surveys broad and her insights bold. Sanders makes theology a pleasure while … [Read more...]

“National Book Awards: Fiction” vote for the best

You can vote on one of the six notable American fiction writers:Flannery O'ConnorJohn CheeverRalph EllisonEudora WeltyWilliam FaulknerNational Book Foundation Fiction Award Poll(When I voted this morning, Flannery O'Connor has a substantial lead.) … [Read more...]

Lives of the Saints – My top 12 favorite books

I have been spending some time on Facebook recently (Rose Pacatte) and everyone is doing these lists on Notes on their profile pages. So I decided to start some lists of my own.Here is a list of my 12 favorite lives of the saints. I have read much hagiography over the course of my life, but these stand out as really good reads. Of course, when I was in the postulancy and novitiate more than 40 years ago our leisure time was limited (even for reading lives of the saints!). But I found these, … [Read more...]

ReAction! Chemistry in the Movies book review

 Here's a link to a book that sounds innovative and unique to chemistry classes. Sounds like an "explosive" idea to me ... using film clips in chemistry class! Love it. An idea for teaching method transfer.... (The link for this review was posted on the MediaEducation listserv.)ReAction! Chemistry in the Movies by Mark Griep and Marjorie Mikasen … [Read more...]

Conquest of the Useless: Reflections on the Making of FITZCARRALDO by Werner Herzog

A funny thing happened on the way to LAX last Friday.I will admit to never having seen "Fitzcarraldo". But I was thoroughly rivited by the NPR interview with the film's director-dreamer Werner Herzog  that I listened to on the way to the airport to collect Frank Frost who was arriving for the National Film Retreat: NPR: Werner Herzog Reveals Intense Private Journals (You can listen to it, which I recommend, or download a transcript).The New York Times reviewed CONQUEST OF THE USELESS: Refl … [Read more...]

Finding life lessons in Harry Potter

Finding lessons for life in Harry Potter books by Deborah Netburn LATimes July 24, 2009 … [Read more...]

New Catholic Book Store in Manhattan! Pauline Books & Media, that is. We’ve moved!

Our former locations in Manhattan included E. 43rd and Vanderbilt and then almost 20 years at 150 E. 52nd Street. As we all feel the pinch of these current economic times we have downsized in space but the new Center on W. 38th St. will continue to be a place of encounter with the Word that is Jesus through the media and our chapel where the Blessed Sacrament is reserved. Pauline Books & Media64 West 38th St. (b/w 5th and 6th, closer to 6th)New York, New York … [Read more...]

Grace & Grotesque: Flannery O’Connor on the page and screen

 AMERICA magazine ran an excellent article on the American Catholic novelist Flannery O'Connor in their June 22, 2009 issue. Here is a link to it: Grace and Grotesque: Flannery O'Connor on the page and screen by Jon M. Sweeney.Sweeney quotes a Nigerian priest who is a writer as well: "“I’m fascinated” he said, “by her incredible understanding of the dynamics of sin and grace in the modern world. I find her work very sacramental and powerful. I’m happy, too, that she was a person of faith wh … [Read more...]

War on Error: Real Stories of American Muslims by Melody Moezzi

When I was at the University of Dayton (working at the Institute for Pastoral initiatives for the online media literacy course a couple of weeks ago I visited the university book store. While it is a typical college bookstore (though one of the better ones, I think) I found a section of books by local authors. Melody Moezzi's book looked - and is - very appealing.For a contemporary American writer, Moezzi excells in combining humor, self-reflection, and an open, … [Read more...]

Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, The

 I picked up this book so often but the letter format put me off. I finally bought it at Costco (big discount). It sat around for awhile. Then when I picked it up I could hardly put it down.The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows (2008, Dial Press/Random House) tells the story of a young writer in post-World War II England who uncovers a story of love and sacrifice between a British woman and a German soldier (a doctor) on the Channel Island of … [Read more...]