Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Innocence of Father Brown - by G. K. Chesterton

The Innocence of Father Brown by G. K. Chesterton  (US Edition) (UK Edition) (DE Edition)
This is the first collection of short stories about the priest and detective. 

I found a rather astonishing reader review:

“This is, quite simply, the best book written in the twentieth century. Chesterton's idiosyncratic, poetic, colourful, often bizarre, writing style; his strong imagination, with its visions of invisible men, secret gardens, false prophets, dream-like islands; the brilliant solutions to his highly original mysteries; the religious allegory; the memorable dialogue and paradox; the character of the little priest from Essex... Mind-shattering.”

It made me wonder if the reviewer made such extravagant claims about other books.  It turned out the reviewer is very well read in mysteries and had reviewed about 70 of them, many which did not earn such praise.  So, give this review some credit.

Between the silver ribbon of morning and the green glittering ribbon of sea, the boat touched Harwich and let loose a swarm of folk like flies, among whom the man we must follow was by no means conspicuous—nor wished to be. There was nothing notable about him, except a slight contrast between the holiday gaiety of his clothes and the official gravity of his face. His clothes included a slight, pale grey jacket, a white waistcoat, and a silver straw hat with a grey-blue ribbon. His lean face was dark by contrast, and ended in a curt black beard that looked Spanish and suggested an Elizabethan ruff. He was smoking a cigarette with the seriousness of an idler. There was nothing about him to indicate the fact that the grey jacket covered a loaded revolver, that the white waistcoat covered a police card, or that the straw hat covered one of the most powerful intellects in Europe. For this was Valentin himself, the head of the Paris police and the most famous investigator of the world; and he was coming from Brussels to London to make the greatest arrest of the century.
Very nicely written indeed!

Here are a few random passages about Father Brown:

"Yes," said Father Brown, and passed his hand through his hair with the same strange vagueness of manner. "Yes, I've heard of it before." 

The small man from Essex turned what seemed to be a dazed face in the dusk, and said, with the timid eagerness of "The Private Secretary": "Are—are you sure?" 

"I don't believe you. I don't believe a bumpkin like you could manage all that. 

Sound familiar?  Let’s just call this blog an homage to Detective Columbo . . .

And now for something completely different!  I am participating in a Blog Hop this week.  It is a way to find out about other book blogs.  So click on the link and check out other blogs!

I am supposed to answer this question.  "How/Where do you get your books? Do you buy them or go to the library? Is there a certain website you use like paperbackswap?"

During the school year, I substitute as a librarian at an elementary school and I check out young adult books.  My public library is not satisfactory.  I gave up trying to get Penelope Lively shifted to my branch so I could check out her novels.  I use PaperBackSwap, but I am really addicted to my Kindle and my current project is to donate my DTB's and not acquire more.

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1 comment:


    Stopping by from the Blog Hop.

    Stop by to visit if you can. I usually get my books from the library.



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