Darling: A Spiritual Autobiography

Richard Rodriguez, Author
Richard Rodriguez. Viking, $26.95 (256p) ISBN 978-0-670-02530-5
Reviewed on: 09/23/2013
Release date: 10/03/2013
Paperback - 235 pages - 978-0-14-312588-4
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Rodriguez (Hunger of Memory) wrote so many well-received essays on the American religious climate after 9/11, often in the context of his own struggle in faith, that he turned them into a book-length narrative about his Roman Catholic formation during the past decade. His pilgrimage begins with "the realization that the God I worship is... the same desert God the terrorists prayed [to]," meanders through ruminations on "small wounds" in a meditation that involves Lance Armstrong and Sheryl Crow, and comes to a slow finish with a smile from Christopher Hitchens and a brief tribute to Mother Teresa. Much like his writing, Rodriguez has been all over the place, traveling, thinking, observing. By the end of his book, he leaves the reader feeling like it all fits together, as if all his essays give "a sense—no, not a sense, a reason—why everyone matters." And more importantly, Rodriguez doesn't beat this discovery over the reader's head but unpacks it gently, over the course of years, in seemingly disjointed stories that explain one writer's journey to a God of many. Agent: Georges Borchardt, Georges Borchardt Literary Agency. (Oct.)
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