The Fine Delight is available in print and as an e-book from Cascade Books.
“Postconciliar” Catholic literature: writing published between the Second Vatican Council and the present. A new Mass translation in December 2011 concluded a nearly 50 year period in Catholic literature: a time when writers both practicing and lapsed, cradle and converts, produced fascinating work borne of their experiences within the faith and culture of Catholicism.
The Fine Delight engages the writing of Ron Hansen, Paul Mariani, and Andre Dubus, as well as several newer Catholic writers, in order to reveal a Catholic literary aesthetic that resists simplification.
A preview of The Fine Delight has been published at The Millions: “Counter and Strange: Contemporary Catholic Literature”
I had a great conversation about this book with The Jesuit Post.
* First Things: Ripatrazone’s strength lies in a close textual analysis of significant works. In the chapter “A Literary Sacrament,” he illustrates Dubus’s talent for peeling back the fabric of ordinary life to reveal the workings of grace and mercy. His close investigations into Mariani’s poetry reveal a similar ability to “sacramentalize the mundane.”
*Dappled Things: In The Fine Delight, we have a thorough and thoughtful piece of scholarship that encourages this ability to be an informed, engaged Catholic reader of texts that stand in a wide variety of relationships to the concept of the “Catholic writer.” It celebrates the Catholic contribution to contemporary literature, not in a triumphalist vein, but with reason and patient exposition that will appeal to readers both inside and outside the Church.