, novels of distinction, is committed to publishing the kind of quality fiction that is not readily available elsewhere. Our first publication is by Michael Natale Cariglia. We have enjoyed choosing just the right design for the dust jacket, the font in which to tell the story, the high quality paper, the black and white headbands and footbands, the pearl linen for the cover, and so forth. All the details of the appearance of the novel are designed to showcase the high quality of the writing.
But as a novel of distinction, is more than a well-written, beautifully designed book. The reader soon discovers that within the pages of this work something essential, though largely absent from contemporary novels, is being disclosed.
is the story of an American pilot on a spy mission during the Cold War whose disabled plane goes down over China. The pilot is soon captured and confined to a small prison cell. As a member of the military, he is strong physically and mentally. But week after week, day after day, minute by minute, he must now confront his despair, his slow dying, and the increasingly urgent foreknowledge of his inevitable death in the cell to which he has been confined. From the moment the pilot parachutes from his plane, the novel begins the account of his spiritual journey into an inner abyss with no way out.
Or so it seems.
is intended in a special way for people who are in a place of suffering in their lives, be that suffering physical, or spiritual, or both. The novel offers those readers the companionship of another person who knows exactly how bad things can get. For the man in the cell things are that bad, too. Most directly, bears witness to the service of America's veterans, to all their tough battles and their confrontation with death and the reality of dying. The book, also, offers hope to human beings who are serving life terms in prison. The man in finds peace even within those bleak circumstances.
The book offers companionship to readers in hospitals, in hospices, or at home suffering the physical confinements and loneliness of death. It offers companionship to their family caregivers and loved ones, also. It provides a way into those difficult conversations about loss, grief, and good-bye.
is a compact novel from which all excess has been excluded. The language is direct and unadorned. The story is there immediately for readers who lack the time or strength for excess. The simple vocabulary makes the book suitable for adolescents who are terminally ill and for older people who might be ill and too distracted by physical pain or grief to tolerate wordy storytelling. is a practical blessing for those too ill even to hold a heavy book.
The high quality of the writing and the economical use of language create a novel that is timeless and instructive. Since its content can be approached from many perspectives, professors of American literature, history, philosophy, and religion will find that the novel would make a good addition to their list of assigned readings. Professors of religious studies, for example, will find that is fundamentally a portrayal of Catholic mysticism, interior detachment, and the journey home to God.
Quality fiction that deals with serious, perhaps controversial, topics is certainly appropriate for use in college courses. The fact that the book is easy to read enhances its educational value as assigned reading. Since students will find the book a quick read, the majority of them would most likely actually read it. Students would, therefore, be able to participate fully in class discussions and the educational endeavor.
Although is easy to read, if the typical young person is going to begin to penetrate to its meaning, he or she will need to discuss it. Typical young people, unlike young people who are seriously ill, do not have experience with the particular knowledge that can come to those on the threshold of death and the perilous unknown. Discussion will help.
Of course, many healthy young people do feel isolated and alone. Such young people will find in an experience of abandonment and despair that somehow resonates with their own experience of desolation. As they read the novel, they, along with all readers of this unusual book, will grow aware of something they may never have anticipated that unfolds silently within the apparent confines of human existence.
is not available in bookstores. To order books directly from the publisher, please download our order form. is pleased to accept orders from associations of all kinds, organizations, colleges, and universities. Buyers such as these, interested in ordering multiple copies of , please write to the publisher for further information:
PO Box 20687
Worcester, MA 01602