What Every Catholic Should Know



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Product Details

Product Code:
0.5 (in)
Size (HxW):
8 x 5.25 (in)
Publication date:
April 17, 2019
10 oz
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Product Overview

Series Summary

The new What Every Catholic Should Know series is intended for the average faithful Catholic who wants to know more about Catholic faith and culture. The authors in this series take a panoramic approach to the topic of each book aimed at a non-specialist but enthusiastic readership. Forthcoming titles planned for this series include: literature, salvation, mercy, history, art, music and philosophy.

Book Summary

Learn about everything from the Greek epics to Shakespeare's plays to Tolkien's famous trilogy. Visit Dante's Italy, Cervantes's Spain, Dostoevsky's Russia, and Jane Austen's England along the way.

Part of the What Every Catholic Should Know series, this book is an insightful introduction to the world's rich depository of stories. It directs the reader back to The Story—the Story of Salvation History—because this is what great literature does. Great literature directs us back to the Storyteller, God himself. Allow Joseph Pearce to be your joyful guide on this brief pilgrimage through the literature every Catholic should know.

Editorial Reviews

"I will recommend Pearce's compelling new study to every student whom I teach."
— Jonathan Thorndike, PhD, Professor and Senior Fellow, Belmont University Honors Program

"This book is an invaluable resource."
— David Lyle Jeffrey, FRSC, Distinguished Professor of Literature and the Humanities, Baylor University 

"This is an eloquent, keenly reasoned, aptly documented, and indisputably cogent book that belongs in every undergraduate library and that should be required reading by every student who goes to these classics for enlightenment and enchantment."
— Philip C. Kolin, Distinguished Professor of English (Emeritus), University of Southern Mississippi 

"This book is a treat for the novice and the lover of Great Books alike, and a humanizing call for Catholics to draw on all the rich and ample resources of our Western literary tradition."
— Daniel J. Mahoney, Augustine Chair in Distinguished Scholarship, Assumption College

"I love this book because there's not a hint of "Eat your spinach" about it. Pearce's reading program is pure pleasure. It can make the world a happier place."
— Mike Aquilina, Author, A History of the Church in 100 Objects

"Learned and accessible, witty and wise, this volume should be a required textbook for every Catholic high school and college student and a must read for all who wish to mine the depths of truly Catholic culture."
— Fr. Dwight Longenecker, Author of The Romance of Religion: Fighting for Goodness, Truth, and Beauty 

"With his charming wit and wide-ranging knowledge, Joseph Pearce expertly guides the reader on a fascinating tour of the world's great literary works of art."
— Stephen Mirarchi, PhD, Assistant Professor of English, Benedictine College

"Joseph Pearce's introduction to literature will be immediately valuable to homeschoolers and college freshmen, but also to the general reader who knows it is as important to know how to read as it is to know what to read."
— Dutton Kearney, PhD, Associate Professor of English, Hillsdale College. Editor of the Ignatius Critical Edition of Gulliver's Travels

"More than any contemporary I can call to mind, Joseph Pearce has made it his life's work to revive classics of the English tradition that most English-speaking Catholics have never known to read. This book has added many titles to my reading list."
Glenn C. Arbery, PhD, President, Wyoming Catholic College


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  • 5
    A guide to great books that will ennoble you

    Posted by Charlie Schmidt on May 5th 2019

    Joseph Pearce has written a listing of Great Books that Catholics should read, and his choices are excellent. His criterion is based books that are true, beautiful and good when viewed from a Catholic perspective. Furthermore, all of his picks have the power to enchant us, inspire us and teach us great truths. Pearce says that the theme of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet is that the lovers let their passionate love override their reason, and led them to make disastrous choices. As he points out, “Love must be subject to reason; a love that denies or defies reason is illicit and is not really love at all.” Matthew Arnold said that learning should consist of “the best that has been thought and said”, and this book is a trustworthy guide to Great Books. Pearce knows literature, has great insights and writes in a clear, quick style. At the end of the book is a listing of his 100 Great Books which can serve as a “to do” list for books not yet read.