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Donna Fletcher Crow

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Donna Fletcher Crow (US) is the author of forty-some books, mostly novels dealing with the history of British Christianity. She is the author of The Monastery Murders series; The Lord Danvers Victorian True-Crime series; The Elizabeth & Richard literary mysteries, GLASTONBURY,A Novel of the Holy Grail and more. www.donnafletchercrow.com

Fay Sampson

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Fay Sampson (UK) is a writer of adult and children's fiction and non-fiction, including A MALIGNANT HOUSE, #2 in the Susie Fewings series, a British Crime Club Pick. http://www.faysampson.co.uk

Something Different for Your Book Club: An Unholy Communion

By Donna Fletcher Crow ~ September 10, 2018

Are you looking for a new angle to stimulate discussion in your book club? As we near Halloween and spooks and goblins begin appearing in store windows and front lawns, many thoughts turn to ideas of the paranormal, so why not prompt a discussion of "things that go bump in the night" by reading An Unholy Communion, book 3 in my Monastery Murders, and talking about the paranormal events Anthony, Felicity and their band of pilgrims encounter?

Here are some questions to get the conversation going:

Wales is often referred to as a land where “the veil is thin”. How do you think the Welsh landscape as encountered by Father Anthony’s pilgrims contributes to this feeling? 

Do the events of Welsh history recounted by Father Anthony bear out this tradition? 

Have you visited Wales? If so, did you experience a sense of “other-worldliness” there? If so, share your experiences. 

All of the paranormal experiences confronting the pilgrims are based on confrontations reported by priests working in deliverance and exorcism. Does knowing that make the events more or less disturbing in the novel for you? 

What do you think about paranormal happenings? Do you believe, as Shakespeare says, “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy”? 

 Have you ever had an experience you would consider paranormal? If so, how did it later make you feel about “everyday” life? 

Or, have you ever known anyone who told of a paranormal experience of their own? If so, how did you react to it? 

Most, but not all, of the abnormal phenomena encountered by the pilgrims in this book can have possible human explanations which are offered, but usually not propounded by members of the group. Do you like the idea of having rational explanations held out as a choice for those, like Inspector Nosterfield, who reject any idea of the extra-sensory? 

The novel walks a somewhat fine line between the rational and the paranormal. Does this work for you? 

At the beginning of the story Felicity has little belief in the reality of evil. How do you think her experiences on the pilgrimage changed her? 

The approach to handling evil in An Unholy Communion is distinctly Christian. How do you feel about that?

What do you think that the fact that every dioceses in the Church of England has a Deliverance Minister on staff has to say about the frequency of such paranormal activity?

And remember, I'm always available to join your group via Skype or Facetime, just send me a note through the contact button above.

Donna Fletcher Crow (US) is the author of forty-some books, mostly novels dealing with the history of British Christianity. She is the author of The Monastery Murders series; The Lord Danvers Victorian True-Crime series; The Elizabeth & Richard literary mysteries, GLASTONBURY,A Novel of the Holy Grail and more. www.donnafletchercrow.com

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