Wednesday 23 May 2018

The Story of Knock - Alice Curtayne

The Story of Knock
Alice Curtayne

Scapular Press (1956)

I have become fascinated with the writings of Alice Curtayne. I first encountered the writings of Alice Curtayne through her book Twenty Tales of Irish Saints, I was immediately captivated by her writing style and her style as a hagiographer. Not since working through all the works of J.F. Powers for an independent reading course have I been so desperate to build a complete collection of an authors works. Only two of her books are still in print in North America, and many never had imprinting's here. Finding her books has not been easy. I have been scouring online libraries and book stores trying to track them down. And that was after trying to get them through inter library loans. I have been able to track down 10 of her works to date and have read 6 of them. And of those 6 I have read each of them at least twice through. But each time I lay my hands on one I am grateful for it. And this one is no exception to that rule.

This volume is a little history of the Our Lady of Knock apparitions, the devotion to Knock, and the shrine. There are 16 pages of text, in a little booklet style track. The print is very small to allow for the compact nature. The original cost of this booklet was $0.25 when it was printed in 1956 and I paid almost 100 times that in order to track it down, and it was worth every penny. There are a number of black and white photos interspersed with the text some half page some full page. The cover does not even contain the authors name. 

Being of Irish Catholic descent I have had a knowledge of and devotion to our Lady of Knock since high school. But I did not know much about the apparition or devotion before reading this booklet. There is so much information in such a small volume. I read this through twice, and then read it again with my son, who is 10. We both loved the booklet and want to read more about Knock because of this booklet. 

Curtayne does an amazing job of presenting the history of the appearance and also analyzing it. She is impartial in weighing the arguments and presenting the facts. This is a wonderful little booklet. I wish it was still in print or available as an eBook there are so many I would recommend this book to. As mentioned laying your hands upon Alice's works, especially in North America is not an easy task, but everything I have read is excellent. This booklet is wonderful, it was worth tracking down and if you can lay your hands on it I give it top marks. 

Note: This book is part of a series of reviews: 2018 Catholic Reading Plan!

Books and Booklets by Alice Curtayne:
A Recall to Dante
Francis Ledwidge: A Life of the Poet
Lough Derg: St. Patrick's Purgatory
Patrick Sarsfield
Saint Anthony of Padua
St. Bernard Doctor of The Church 1933

Books Edited by Alice Curtayne:
The Complete works of Francis Ledwidge

Books Translated by Alice Curtayne:
Labours in the Vineyard by Giovanni Papin

Books Contributed to by Alice Curtayne:

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