The Cloister Walk

The Cloister Walk

4.07 (6,878 ratings by Goodreads)
  • Hardback
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Kathleen Norris, a married woman with a thoroughly Protestant background and often more doubt than faith, finds herself, somewhat to her own surprise, on two extended residencies at St John's Abbey in Minnesota. Part record of her time among the Benedictines, part meditation on aspects of monastic life, The Cloister Walk demonstrates from the rare perspective of someone who is both an insider and outsider, how immersion in the cloistered world - its liturgy, ritual and sense of community - can impart meaning to everyday events and deepen our secular lives. In this stirring and lyrical work, the monastery becomes immediate, accessible, and relevant to us, no matter what our faith may be. n 'Who's this book for? Poetry lovers, English-literature students, marriage counsellors, monks, hairstylists, unemployed people, teachers, Catholics, Protestants, agnostics, Buddhists. Anyone with an open mind and a love of words, in short' RTE Guide
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Product details

  • Hardback | 400 pages
  • 138 x 216mm | 610g
  • Lion Hudson Plc
  • Lion Books
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • 0745941974
  • 9780745941974

Review Text

Ten years ago, the acclaimed poet Kathleen Norris became a Benedictine oblate and has recorded her reflections while spending her time in St John's Abbey, Minnesota, in these two books. Happily married, with a Protestant background which grew from attending her grandmother's small-town church, Norris was at first puzzled that she should be drawn to the monastic way of life. But the structure liberated her mind and has enabled her to put together two quite extraordinary books, pummelling questions of faith into submission and conjecturing sharply about established religious practice and habits. In the first, The Cloister Walk, she examines how time apart can profitably feed time in the secular world, writing on a broad range of subjects including the Biblical prophet Jeremiah, religion in America, a nursing home on a Sunday afternoon and the Gregorian brain. Amazing Grace deals primarily with Norris's struggle against the limitations of 'Christian' language - words such as 'judgement', 'faith', 'sinner' and 'Christ' meant nothing to her when she began her journey of faith - and charts her success in redefining the path more originally and creatively. Her subtle humour, acerbic mind and eclectic approach make her books compulsive reading. (Kirkus UK)
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About Kathleen Norris

KATHLEEN NORRIS is a poet and author of the bestselling The Cloister Walk and Amazing Grace. She and her husband live in South Dakota, USA.
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Rating details

6,878 ratings
4.07 out of 5 stars
5 38% (2,624)
4 38% (2,606)
3 18% (1,262)
2 4% (283)
1 1% (103)
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