cover image Newman's Unquiet Grave: The Reluctant Saint

Newman's Unquiet Grave: The Reluctant Saint

John Cornwell, Continuum, $24.95 (276p) ISBN 978-1-4411-5084-4

When John Henry Newman converted from Anglicanism to Roman Catholicism in 1845, it represented something of an anticlimax in the career of an Anglican divine and his efforts, through the influential Oxford Movement, to bring the English church back to its Catholic roots. A renowned scholar and thinker, Newman produced thousands of pages that some have considered the finest theological writing of his time. Even today, Newman continues to shape the thoughts of aspiring theologians. But as Cornwell, prolific author of works on Catholicism, suggests, the good cardinal had his detractors. The author suggests that there may be sufficient contradictions in, and perhaps enough unanswered questions about, his subject's life to call into question Newman's upcoming beatification, expected in September. Newman's spiritual and, indeed, philosophical journey serves as a fascinating template for understanding the 19th-century Catholic Church and its trajectories into England. This is a wonderfully realized study of a complex man, required reading for every student of English history and its rich Christian tradition. (Sept.)