A boy is born in 1921 of fervently Catholic, Franco-American parents, in a paper-mill town on the edge of New Hampshire’s Great North Woods. His father dies from heart failure at age 32 and his mother remains single to raise her five children. The boy grows up during the Great Depression of the 1930s, sharing a tight neighborhood with his Italian friends, immersed in a culture that blends French Canadian traditions with newfound American ways. He attends the Catholic parochial school that rises 200 feet from his home, and at 13 he leaves for the seminary.
From his geographically and culturally confined birthplace, he transfers into 12 years behind cloistered walls, cut off from the world outside. Bright, ambitious, strongly attracted to the opposite sex, he struggles against suffocating sexual norms and the dominance of his religious superiors. In the end, still doubtful of his calling, he relies on his counselors and on the voice of circumstance, and convinces himself that God wants him to be a priest. At age 25 he is ordained.
Twenty years later he will leave the priesthood, a living reminder that each human soul has a sacred need to be free.
Writing from Tipton St John in Devonshire: As soon as I saw the title and cover I wanted to read the preview. Wonderful. I am going to place an order for a copy. As soon as it arrives here in England I intent to settle down to a good read!