saint peter s basilica

Saint or sinner? The Sins of G. K. Chesterton by Richard Ingrams

Review by Jon Elsby Some years ago, a slim, paperback volume entitled The Holiness of G. K. Chesterton appeared. It was a collection of essays by various Roman Catholic academics who shared the (still somewhat eccentric) view that Chesterton should be canonized. Now, we have a book by Richard Ingrams – best known as the […]

Continue Reading
saint peter s basilica

Intrigues and Machinations: Conclave by Robert Harris

Review by Jon Elsby Assessing Robert Harris’s1 Conclave is not only a question of style. Also singled out are the quality of the dialogue, the architecture of the narrative, the balance between different sections, the sharpness of the characterization, the economy and precision of the descriptive writing, the ability unerringly to choose the telling concrete […]

Continue Reading

The Certainty of George Weigel

by Jon Elsby 1 George Weigel is a controversial figure. A Catholic intellectual and a political and cultural conservative of a distinctively American kind, he is greatly admired by those who share his convictions and severely criticized by those who do not, including some of his co-religionists. But reactions to Weigel are rarely mild. For […]

Continue Reading

The philosophy of Iris Murdoch

by Jon Elsby During her lifetime, Iris Murdoch was probably better known – and more highly esteemed – as a novelist than as a philosopher. Privately, Isaiah Berlin once called her ‘a lady not noted for the clarity of her ideas’.’ Yet she taught philosophy at St Anne’s College, Oxford for several years, and, since […]

Continue Reading

A Retrospect on The Three Tenors

by Jon Elsby Just about everyone old enough to remember the football World Cups of the 1990s and early 2000s will remember the Three Tenors. The open air concerts they gave, cleverly timed to coincide with those World Cups, converted Luciano Pavarotti, Plácido Domingo, and José Carreras from operatic superstars into household names, and briefly […]

Continue Reading

A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies, and Leadership by James Comey

Review by Jon Elsby Reviewers have been divided about the purpose of this book. Supporters of Donald Trump see it as an exercise in score-settling. Other Comey critics, not necessarily Republicans, are inclined to see it as an ego-trip – the former Director of the FBI seizing a final chance to take centre stage before […]

Continue Reading
%d bloggers like this: