An Infinity of Little Hours

An Infinity of Little Hours : The Trial of Faith of Five Young Men in the Western World's Most Austere Monastic Order

4.11 (313 ratings by Goodreads)
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This riveting chronicle of an unimaginably difficult spiritual journey offers an unprecedented look inside a secretive world unchanged since medieval times. In 1960, five young men arrived at the imposing gates of Parkminster in West Sussex, the largest centre of the most rigorous and ascetic monastic order in the Western world: the Carthusians. This is the story of their five-year journey into a society virtually unchanged in its behaviour and lifestyle since its foundations in 1084. "An Infinity of Little Hours" is a uniquely intimate portrait of the customs and practices of a monastic order almost entirely unknown until now. It is also a drama of the men's struggle as they avoid the 1960s - the decade of hedonism, music, fashion and amorality - and enter an entirely different era and a spiritual world of their own making. After five years each must face a choice: to make "solemn profession" and never leave Parkminster; or to turn his back on his life's ambition to find God in solitude. A remarkable investigative work, the book combines first-hand testimony with unique source material to describe the Carthusian life. And in the final chapter, which recounts a reunion forty years after the events described elsewhere in the book, Nancy Klein Maguire reveals which of the five succeeded in their quest, and which did more

Product details

  • Hardback | 320 pages
  • 162 x 236 x 30mm | 557.93g
  • PublicAffairs,U.S.
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 1586483277
  • 9781586483272
  • 1,184,297

Review quote

"Maguire has produced a vivid, gripping and deeply touching picture of a world that is now lost. For an outsider to enter such a closed society and to capture its essence is an astonishing achievement: this is a work of history, but it has all the best qualities of a psychological novel." Diarmaid MacCulloch, author of The Reformation: A History "A warm, readable account of life in Parkminster Charterhouse during the 1960s." The Bookseller"show more

About Nancy Klein Maguire

Nancy Klein Maguire is the author of numerous publications on the relationship of theatre and politics in the seventeenth century. She is a regular contributor to the Los Angeles Times Book Review, and has been a Scholar-in-Residence at the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington DC since more

Rating details

313 ratings
4.11 out of 5 stars
5 38% (119)
4 39% (122)
3 19% (61)
2 3% (10)
1 0% (1)
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