observations: Researching an entry back in April of last year, we thought we needed to read the book about the serial killer of ex-nuns. And this is it – Jane Haddam wrote the previous nun book, this is her under a different name. She does like a religious theme in her books (of which there are many) and she writes well about religion. Not many murder stories contain detailed discussions on the effect of Vatican II on the worldwide Catholic community, but she has written more than one.
Nuns in the USA are in a certain amount of turmoil at the moment, as outlined in the previous entry (and you can find out more here), and their future is uncertain. What they wear has been the subject of endless discussion, with many lay Catholics regretting the loss of the distinctive habits – although the habits when introduced were usually intended as merely a simple form of everyday dress. Since then, just by staying unchanged, they had moved further and further away from everyone else, but that was not the original intention.
The book is an excellent and very sad thriller, largely about the dreadful things that can happen to lost and abducted children. Many such books – while of course paying lip service to how bad it is – have a queasy relish in describing what goes on. This book is remarkably free from that, and no-one could doubt the outrage of the writer.
Links on the blog: There have been several previous nun entries– the one mentioned above by the same writer, the roller-skating male nuns in Armistead Maupin’s Halloween San Francisco, the nuns who became possessed by the Devils of Loudon, and a nun detective here and here.
The picture is from the Dutch National Archive (as was a previous nun picture) and is of a nun visiting a graveyard on All Soul’s Day, which is today.
Last year's All Souls entry featured a Mexican skeleton and the Day of the Dead celebrations.