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Book News

The Birth of the Pill: How Four Crusaders Reinvented Sex and Launched a Revolution by Jonathan Eig (W. W. Norton & Company, 409 pages, $32.95 in print, $16.05 on Kindle).

The evolution of the penitential rite


Penance in Medieval Europe, 600-1200 by Rob Meens (Cambridge University Press, softcover, 290 pages, $29.99).

At a time when the Sacrament of Penance is in decline, a new history of early Medieval penance helps put today’s apparent crisis in a much longer perspective. Rob Meens offers a scholarly overview of the formative period when sacramental confession emerged. He takes readers back to when Catholicism appeared very different from what we expect today, a journey which some might find unsettling, others enlightening.

Has this author no shame?


Love  The Saint and the Seeker by Christina Stevens (Hay House, 328 pages, softcover, $16.95)

The cover to Love — The Saint and the Seeker shows a photograph of Blessed Mother Teresa with her head slightly bent, listening attentively, perhaps even submissively, while Christina Stevens, the author, speaks to her, script in hand. The look is distinctly collaborative. The title is writ large across the photo. The subtitle, somewhat more discreetly placed at the bottom.

Atheist takes an intellectual journey to faith


Something Other Than God: How I Passionately Sought Happiness and Accidentally Found It by Jennifer Fulwiler (Ignatius Press, hardcover, 248 pages, $25.95).

When God answered Jennifer Fulwiler’s prayers, she was upset. It was just another confirmation for the former, self-proclaimed militant atheist that God does in fact exist.

Smoking gun? Pope Francis’ critics cite new book in questioning his papacy


NEW YORK - Was there a secret plot to elect Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio at the papal conclave last year? Did Bergoglio — who became Pope Francis at that conclave — give the go-ahead to such a plan? And does that campaign call his election, and his papacy, into question?

Faith helped Hurricane Hazel endure political slings and arrows


Catholic Register columnist Robert Brehl teamed up with Hazel McCallion to write the life story of the remarkable woman who served Mississauga as mayor for 36 years. In this excerpt from Hurricane Hazel: A Life with Purpose, Brehl and McCallion delve into the important role faith played in her political life.

Excitement on environmental guidebook is shortlived


I take seriously the call to stewardship of our environment and respect for God’s creation as a whole. So I was excited to delve into a new study guide produced by the Jesuit Forum for Social Faith and Justice published by the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops. 

In Scripture, we learn of Christ


Growing up in Nigeria, Fr. Victor Abimbola Amole wanted to become a doctor, until age 12 when he met a missionary priest from Ireland who changed his life’s path. By age 16, he began to consider the priesthood and by 18 his mind was set.

Pius XII book earns honour for King’s prof Ventresca


A Canadian has captured the first ever American Catholic Historical Association prize for biography.

Bob Carson’s dream comes true


TORONTO - Being the crossword puzzle guy in a prison means you are never without friends. You become the go-to person when someone is stumped.

Soup’s On to support children’s charities


TORONTO - As a food columnist for 22 years at Canada’s largest newspaper, Catholic writer Mary McGrath tasted a lot of soup. Now she’s serving up her favourite recipes in a book to support children’s charities.