Father Under Fire

Father Under Fire

4.25 (40 ratings by Goodreads)
  • Paperback
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Product details

  • Paperback | 240 pages
  • 148.6 x 214.1 x 18.5mm | 358.33g
  • Random House Children's Publishers UK
  • Corgi Childrens
  • London, United Kingdom
  • New edition
  • New edition
  • 0552116289
  • 9780552116282

Review Text

More sunny, sentimental, often quite funny clerical capers - in Boyd's third sketchbook about the parish of St. Jude in 1951 West London. Again Father Neil is the bemused curate to great-hearted, corner-cutting Father ("little Charlie") Duddleswell. And also along are housekeeper Miss Pring ("who," says Duddleswell, "can lift me off the ground just with a blast of her mouth"); Billy Buzzle, bookie and convenient "convert" at ecumenical meetings; Dr. Daley, chum and ever-ready co-conspirator; and the local Mother Superior (also known as the Big Penguin). The twelve episodes lead off with the arrival of a thunderous, bibulous, octogenarian priest, Father Abe, during Holy Week - a week which includes a visit from Bishop "Sponger" O'Reilly, hilarious rounds with Father Abe, Father Duddleswell's lumbago, not to mention the longest rosary on record. And among the other giddy doings at St. Jude: a rivalry between undertakers and a nick-of-time switch of coffins; Fr. Duddleswell's ill-fated enterprise to promote miraculous holy water for fertility, with unfortunate results on an Episcopal interior; plus a pilgrimage spent in a mouse-infested inn and under a billiard table, all because the Big Penguin is determined to enshrine a relic - the tibia of the order's Mother Foundress. But, as always, there are also a few solemn matters in all the drollery: the happy marriage of a Jewish orphan (protege of a tragedy-scarred rabbi) and a young Catholic girl (rescued from a fire by Fr. Duddleswell); the suicide of a homosexual headmaster whose reputation is protected by Fr. Duddleswell; and the death and double burial of Fr. Abe and the last baby he'd baptized. With lots of Freely feathered flights of Irish oratory and wrecking-ball insults, a nice serving of clergy comedy in the Barry Fitzgerald spirit. (Kirkus Reviews)show more

Rating details

40 ratings
4.25 out of 5 stars
5 42% (17)
4 40% (16)
3 18% (7)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
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