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Unworthy: A Novel
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Published:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group 2018
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Available from OverDrive
Description
Abram Singer is a Catholic priest with an unusual name and a dark secret. Against the backdrop of gritty 1970s New York, in a simple, straightforward style, he tells us his story. The son of an absent Jewish father and a devout Italian mother, Abram was drawn to the meaningful structure of the seminary, eventually becoming a parish priest in Manhattan. His sincerest wish is to do God’s work, but he is not without human failings: he is irresistibly attracted to women and has a secret lover named Lisa. But when an anonymous letter arrives threatening to expose his liaison, he is forced to decide whether the risks of his sin have become too great. Riveting and powerfully intimate, Unworthy unflinchingly explores the nature of faith, loyalty, and identity—and gives us a timeless portrait of a man trying to make his way in America’s greatest city.
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Format:
Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read
Street Date:
05/22/2018
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780385542951
ASIN:
B075PWSCLV
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Citations
APA Citation (style guide)

Antonio Monda. (2018). Unworthy: A Novel. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Antonio Monda. 2018. Unworthy: A Novel. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Antonio Monda, Unworthy: A Novel. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2018.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Antonio Monda. Unworthy: A Novel. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2018. Web.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2010. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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Grouped Work ID:
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Needs Update?:
No
Date Added:
Jun 12, 2018 17:34:00
Date Updated:
Dec 06, 2020 02:45:12
Last Metadata Check:
May 22, 2022 08:54:14
Last Metadata Change:
Apr 17, 2022 08:40:15
Last Availability Check:
May 22, 2022 08:54:17
Last Availability Change:
Sep 10, 2019 07:51:11
Last Grouped Work Modification Time:
May 23, 2022 02:08:35

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      • bioText: Antonio Monda is the author of five novels and five collections of essays. His books have been trans­lated into eleven languages. He is a regular contributor to La Repubblica, and his work has also appeared in The Paris Review, Fiction, The Common, and Vanity Fair. He lives in New York City, where he teaches at New York University.
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title
Unworthy
fullDescription
Abram Singer is a Catholic priest with an unusual name and a dark secret. Against the backdrop of gritty 1970s New York, in a simple, straightforward style, he tells us his story. The son of an absent Jewish father and a devout Italian mother, Abram was drawn to the meaningful structure of the seminary, eventually becoming a parish priest in Manhattan. His sincerest wish is to do God’s work, but he is not without human failings: he is irresistibly attracted to women and has a secret lover named Lisa. But when an anonymous letter arrives threatening to expose his liaison, he is forced to decide whether the risks of his sin have become too great. Riveting and powerfully intimate, Unworthy unflinchingly explores the nature of faith, loyalty, and identity—and gives us a timeless portrait of a man trying to make his way in America’s greatest city.
reviews
      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        March 19, 2018
        Set in the late 1970s, this ruminative novel from Monda, acclaimed Italian filmmaker, critic, and author of Do You Believe? Conversations on God and Religion, centers on a delinquent Catholic priest, Abram Singer, who battles mounting doubt and temptation in New York City. Once a construction worker who helped to build the World Trade Center, Abram joins the priesthood despite an innate inability to observe its rules and practices; in one exemplary incident, he steals money from the collection to fund the abortion of one of his mistresses, Lisa. Soon, Abram begins receiving anonymous letters threatening to expose his crimes to the church, and the situation gets increasingly complicated when Lisa is diagnosed with cancer. Forced to keep his distance from Lisa as her condition worsens, Abram’s faith and resilience are stretched to their limits after an intense physical altercation with Lisa’s brother. While too much of the novel is bogged down in generalized musings on religion and morality, Monda writes with earnestness, especially in his evocations of the novel’s period and setting. Some of the strongest sections have nothing at all to do with religion; these moments draw the reader into, for instance, the grimed milieu of the Port Authority in a way that makes the terrestrial feel holy. And while the novel is more profound in theory than in execution, Monda proves himself a worthy interlocutor of the spiritual and the
        secular alike.

      • premium: True
      • source: Kirkus
      • content:

        March 15, 2018
        In 1970s New York, a young priest agonizes over his surrender to temptations of the flesh.Monda (Do You Believe? 2007, etc.) is an Italian writer who lives in New York City. A few references--building the World Trade Center towers, Mayor Abraham Beame, Studio 54, the Foreman-Ali fight in Zaire--give a glancing idea of the city and the time when this book is set. The story concerns a brief period in the life of the narrator, a recently ordained Catholic priest who has embarked, never mind the vow of chastity, on an affair. He also deals with parish business, hears confession, and delivers homilies. A subplot involving an anonymous accusatory letter tries to add suspense, as does the priest's discovering a lump on his lover's breast. The slim novel often toggles between his trysts and the post-coital tristesse of his solitary inquisitions into why unshaken faith coexists with unslakable appetites. Monda's treatment of a morally and theologically complex area, however sincerely expressed by his priest, is somewhat scattershot and fraught with overworked pathos. The cleric's guilt-ridden internal keening becomes a sort of liturgy he repeatedly performs in the sanctuary of his tormented mind, a dark Mass of the soul served with a lot of whine. It is possible, though, to admire the economy of conscience with which he melds the sins of lying, lust, and larceny when he says he is going out to see his mother before going off to buy his lover something with money stolen from the collection plate.An interesting but finally disappointing look at a priest grappling with women and guilt.

        COPYRIGHT(2018) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

      • premium: True
      • source: Booklist
      • content:

        April 15, 2018
        Abram Singer is a Catholic priest in New York City, haunted by his illicit sexual encounters and an ongoing affair. Bound by his eternal oath and gravely aware of his wrongdoing, he recounts the physical and emotional depths of the affair with conflicted remorse. The interminable return to his misdeeds is exasperating and reveals an unwillingness to deny their forbidden tenderness. Longing for release, Father Singer realizes he is in love; and through that love, he experiences a new depth of pain and loss. Set in the 1970s, Monda's novel is a moving exploration of suffering and happiness and an examination of the shame of sin and the thrill of yearning. Explicit sexual encounters are in stark contrast with eloquent Catholic theological reflections, and the narrator's lustful musings about his dual existence are dark and complicated. His weakness, so authentically rendered; his longing to be better than his very human impulses; and his raw, conflictful confession all paint an intimate portrait of a man besieged by the tumultuous collision of doctrine and desire.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2018, American Library Association.)

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Abram Singer is a Catholic priest with an unusual name and a dark secret. Against the backdrop of gritty 1970s New York, in a simple, straightforward style, he tells us his story. The son of an absent Jewish father and a devout Italian mother, Abram was drawn to the meaningful structure of the seminary, eventually becoming a parish priest in Manhattan. His sincerest wish is to do God’s work, but he is not without human failings: he is irresistibly attracted to women and has a secret lover named Lisa. But when an anonymous letter arrives threatening to expose his liaison, he is forced to decide whether the risks of his sin have become too great. Riveting and powerfully intimate, Unworthy unflinchingly explores the nature of faith, loyalty, and identity—and gives us a timeless portrait of a man trying to make his way in America’s greatest city.
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