Friday, July 22, 2011

Book #83: Faith

Faith: A NovelTitle: Faith
Author: Jennifer Haigh

Wow, it feels like forever since I read this book, so my review isn't likely to be especially detailed or insightful at this point. In Faith, Sheila McGann returns to Boston after years of estrangement from her family when her brother, Art, a Catholic priest is accused of molesting a little boy. The story turns out to be a lot more complicated and nuanced than I originally expected. I thought the story could have gone in one of two ways-- either he did it and Sheila was going to discover that her brother wasn't the person she thought he was, or he didn't do it and was being set up unfairly. The actual story lay somewhere in the middle. It was, in many ways, a sweet and heartbreaking portrayal of a man who had been scarred in his childhood and managed to live into adulthood in innocence, but then lost that innocence in the last months of his life. It's also a story of how a family rallies (or doesn't) around a brother. My main quibble with the book is that some of the female characters (notably the other brother's wife) seem relatively one-dimensional, but I think I only noticed the flatness of that character because the rest of the story was so nuanced. 

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