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Frank and Maisie

A Memoir with Parents

By (author) Wilfrid Sheed
Format: Hardback
Publisher: Vintage Publishing, London, United Kingdom
Imprint: Chatto & Windus
Published: 10th Apr 1986
Dimensions: w 140mm h 220mm
Weight: 695g
ISBN-10: 0701130547
ISBN-13: 9780701130541
Barcode No: 9780701130541

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Kirkus US
A book about two extraordinary parents written in a shrewd, but loving fashion by a fine writer. Those familiar with Sheed's work will not be surprised at this lively and touching saga of two dedicated propagandists for Catholicism whose lives were deeply affected by the Cardinal Newmans, the Monsignor Knoxes, the Bellocs and Chestertons and the philosophical turmoil of the pre-Pope John Church. They lived out of suitcases, lectured widely and argued the faith in Hyde Park, handling hecklers, friends and family with remarkable grace and wit. When Frank and Maisie had an odd moment, they were involved in many social issues, got to know everyone, went everywhere while maintaining a warm and rambunctious family life. As if that were not enough, they founded the doughty Sheed and Ward publishing company, which was perhaps one of the most important and creative elements in designing the style of the modern Catholic church in the English-speaking world. It is always difficult to write intelligently and with clarity about one's parents, but Sheed has done that with a lightness and joy that is dazzling. The reader will feel sad not to have known Frank and Maisie, but this loving lite goes a long way in assuaging that loss. It is not a story for Catholics alone because there is an epic quality in this deceptively modest story that covers many of the crises through which our poor world had tottered, using faith and love as a salutary touchstone. The parents in this book are very much in love, their energy and joie de vivre tab them as "fools of God," a term of admiration as employed here. How refreshing to be in the presence of such devoted and charming human beings and how humbling to know that in the midst of boobism, babbitism, superficiality and violence, there were people like Frank and Maisie, lovers and fools. (Kirkus Reviews)