Island of the World

by Michael C. O'Brien

  General / Favorable Reviews
  Critical Reviews
  "In Michael O'Brien's new novel we feel the mystery and theology palpitating on every page without ever feeling that the deeper meaning is obstructing the momentum of the plot. The genius of O'Brien is that he does not wear his theological heart on his sleeve but lets its pulse provide the unobtrusive rhythm to which the story dances. This is storytelling at its most sublime"

-- -Joseph Pearce
 Author, Literary Converts

"It is difficult to know where to turn for noble enough analogies in speaking of this book. Michael O'Brien has achieved both a seriousness and a delicacy, that is not to be taken lightly. I wonder whether we are going to find Mr. O'Brien's name taking its place along with those of Mauriac and Bernanos before too long?"

--Thomas Howard
Author, Dove Descending: A Journey into T.S. Eliot's Four Quartets

"Michael O'Brien has done it again. Penetrating, incisive, lyrical and startlingly clear and crisp, this is a novel that obliges readers to think, think and think again. Unlike so many of his literary contemporaries, the author has something to say that is not only new but is intensely important. Every writer, teacher, thinker and politician should be obliged to read Michael O'Brien. If they did so, the world would be a far better place."

--Michael Coren
 Author, C. S Lewis: The Man Who Created Narnia

"There is a kind of historical novel that may appear less a work of conventional fiction than an acute recollection of intimate personal stories, gathered secretly and then, in contemplative solitude, softly woven together with prophetic insight. When such a weave is spun on the right writerly loom, underthreaded with prayer of a mystical intensity, something far more deeply discerning than typical historical fiction can result. Island of the World offers a rich but unsettling fabric, the lovely and the terrible together, evoking not only the social tragedy and horribly tested piety of 20thC Croatia, but the fragile beauty of holiness in a time of adversity anywhere."

--David Lyle Jeffrey
 Author, People of the Book

"You will not want to put this book down until you finish it, and you will continue to live in it even after you close its covers. This story will change you. It will make you a wiser, better person. Is there any greater, rarer success we can hope for in a mere book than that?"

--- Peter Kreeft, Ph.D.,
Boston College
 Author, The Philosophy of Tolkien




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  Another phenomenal read!! *****

Michael D. O'Brien challenged, moved and amazed me with this lyrical and harrowing novel. I wept many times, remembering the "fields of heaven" where he grew up, and the horror he grew into through the terror of war and despotism. The spiritual passages and poetry lifted me above this world toward the infinite. You will never forget the characters and places, the injustice, the love, the faith, and the sheer majesty of this story played out against the history of the Croatian people. Every time I think Mr. O'Brien cannot possible top himself in print, he does;- his talent that he shares so liberally with others elevates and deepens one's view of life, and stretches your mind and spirit to the shattering point. An experience not to be missed or taken on lightly.









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