Book recommendations


Today I received a copy of a new book by Anthony Esolen (Dante translator) called Defending Marriage: Twelve Arguments for Sanity.

I have such regard for Prof. Esolen that I’ll recommend the book even before I read it!

I would also like to recommend a few more titles which I have read or am now well into.

UK readers: Copy and paste the titles into my amazon search box at the bottom of the blog page.

First, I am well into Disinformation: Former Spy Chief Reveals Secret Strategies for Undermining Freedom, Attacking Religion, and Promoting Terrorism by Ronald Rychlak and Lt. Gen. Ion Mihai Pacepa.

Rychlak has written about the smearing of Pius XII (e.g., Hitler, the War, and the Pope).  He is a law professor who teaches about evidence.  In this book he teamed up with the guy who ran intelligence for Romanian despot and Soviet thug Nicolae Ceau?escu. Pacepa fled to the West when he was asked to start killing people. He is an expert on the Soviet technique of framing, disinformation, creating false narratives and history. The book exposes the Communist background of seemingly-benign organizations and explains the treatment received by Cardinals Stepinak, Mindszenty and Wysznski and, of course, Pius XII.

I think we can read this book in connection with Esolen’s book, above, and a couple others I will mentioned hereunder. It explains how the Left works everywhere. As we read, most of the

“foreign intelligence services are primarily engaged in collecting information to help their heads of state conduct foreign affairs, but in Russia and later throughout the Russian sphere of influence, that task has always been more or less irrelevant. There the goal is to manipulate the future, not just to learn about the past. Specifically, the idea is to fabricate a new past for enemy targets in order to change how the world perceives them.”

Have some coffee and read even later into the night!

Explains a lot.

Also, you might try Non-Negotiable: Essential Principles of a Just Society and Humane Culture by Sheila Liaugminas.

And also…

Making Gay Okay: How Rationalizing Homosexual Behavior Is Changing Everything by Robert R. Reilly.

It’s all about making black be… not white… making black be giraffe.

On my slate are

Principalities and Powers: Spiritual Combat 1942-1943 by George William Rutler.


A Nice Little Place on the North Side: Wrigley Field at One Hundred by George Will

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Augustine Thompson O.P. says:

    Alright, this is shameless self promotion, but, Fr. Z., you did put up some great titles. Your obed’nt reader has written some books that your readership might also enjoy (including one that you have given wonderful publicity for already):

    Revival Preachers and Politics in Thirteenth-Century Italy: The Great Devotion of 1233 (Oxford, 1992; rpt. Wipf & Stock Publ., 2010)

    Cities of God: The Religion of the Italian Communes, 1125-1325 (Penn State Univ. Press, 2006)

    Francis of Assisi: A New Biography (Cornell Univ. Press, 2012)

    [I sold a boat load of this excellent book for you last time. Sheesh! Even more? Okay… because you jumped into the Zagano MOOS thread.]
    Again, forgive my self-promotion, but I do think some readers would enjoy these titles. If you think this out of line, do go ahead and delete this post! [Such audacity. But around here we use my links. o{]:¬) ]

  2. Augustine Thompson O.P. says:

    Yes, I saw that spike on Amazon! As an old friend, now a Benedictine in France, used to say, “You are a jewel among men!”

    Hay, when can Newsweek, the New Yorker, the Ennio Flaiano Prize committee in Italy, and Father Z. all agree on the same book as notable or prize-worthy? I consider that fourth of those the most honorable. Also, all the royalties go, not to me, but to my province, which as you know is the center for celebration of the tradition Dominican Rite in the U.S.

    I am going to put up the Summit Nuns request on my blog again. Fine religious and wonderful women!

    Thanks again for your kindness, Father. And that ends the self-promotion . . .

  3. Elizabeth D says:

    Fr Augustine, I emailed your comment on the other thread to Phyllis Zagano and it seemed like it took the wind out of her sails. Domini canes to the rescue! Again thank you.

  4. JonPatrick says:

    I noticed a mention above of Esolen as a Dante translator. Recently I started reading the Divine Comedy from the Mark Musa translation put out by Penguin, which I found in a wonderful used bookstore we have locally. I wonder how these 2 translations compare? So far the Musa translation seems pretty readable and he has lots of notes at the end of each Canto to help you understand it.

  5. JABV says:

    I am ~60 percent through Esolen’s Ten Ways to Destroy the Imagination of Your Child, which I find moving and challenging as a future father and even personally, being a very young man.

    NB: Obviously the tone implied by the title is a bit in the mold of A Modest Proposal!

  6. Priam1184 says:

    I have a DVD recommendation if anyone is interested: The Day of the Siege: September Eleven 1683 will be available on Amazon on July 22. It is about the Turkish attack on Vienna, the last major Muslim drive into the heart of Europe, in 1683 and one should note the date. The following day September 12, 1683 is when Jan Sobieski’s Polish cavalry (Tolkien’s ride of the Rohirim to liberate Minas Tirith is actually based on Sobieski’s cavalry charge) actually broke the siege over Vienna and September 12 is still celebrated as the Feast of the Most Holy Name of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the Western calendar for that reason. So September 11, 1683 marked Islam’s farthest advance into Europe and it shows that bin Laden didn’t choose that day for nothing.

    This movie was predictably panned by the critics but, at the very least it might be some nice summer entertainment

  7. Venerator Sti Lot says:

    For those who want to sample the work of, or supplement the book by, General Pacepa, he is a columnist at pjmedia.

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