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Crimes of the Father - Tom Keneally

Paperback Published: 31st October 2016
ISBN: 9780857987112
Number Of Pages: 384

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A timely, courageous and powerful novel about faith, the church, conscience and celibacy.

Tom Keneally, ex-seminarian, pulls no punches as he interrogates the terrible damage done to innocents as the Catholic Church has prevaricated around language and points of law, covering up for its own.

Ex-communicated to Canada due to his radical preaching on the Vietnam War and other human rights causes, Father Frank Docherty is now a psychologist and monk. He returns to Australia to speak on abuse in the Church, and unwittingly is soon listening to stories from two different people – a young man, via his suicide note, and an ex-nun – who both claim to have been sexually abused by an eminent Sydney cardinal. This senior churchman is himself currently empannelled in a commission investigating sex abuse within the Church.

As a man of character and conscience, Father Docherty finds he must confront each party involved in the abuse and cover-up to try to bring the matter to the attention of the Church itself, and to secular authorities.

This riveting, profoundly thoughtful novel is both an exploration of faith as well as an examination of marriage, of conscience and celibacy, and of what has become one of the most controversial institutions, the Catholic Church.


Catholic Church from the inside


I enjoyed seeing the Roman Catholic Church from the point of view of a good priest who is also a normal man. One so often reads about the other kind.

NSW mid north coast


A great read


Well researched and well written . Engaging characters. A good read.



Stunning expose of Catholic Church


Informative coverage of a very current issue- child abuse in the Catholic Church. Helped gain better understanding of how this has been able to exist.

Nelson Bay Australia


Powerful and disturbing.


A must read for all those who are outraged by the Catholic Church's coverup of sexual abuse and it's continuing lack of understanding that it must face up to the need for the institution to change and address the sins of clergy and brothers. Tom Keneally is able to be a reputable witness to the crimes of the Church because of his intimate personal knowledge of the institution

Warnbro WA


Crimes of the Father

4.5 4


ISBN: 9780857987112
ISBN-10: 0857987119
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 384
Published: 31st October 2016
Publisher: Random House Australia
Country of Publication: AU
Dimensions (cm): 23.2 x 15.4  x 3.2
Weight (kg): 0.51
Edition Number: 1

Thomas Keneally

About the Author

Thomas Keneally won the Booker Prize in 1982 with Schindler's Ark, later made into the Academy Award-winning film Schindler's List by Steven Spielberg. His non-fiction, includes the memoir Searching For Schindler and Three Famines, an LA Times Book of the Year, and the histories The Commonwealth Of Thieves, The Great Shame and American Scoundrel.

His fiction, includes The Daughters Of Mars, The Widow And Her Hero (shortlisted for the Prime Minister's Literary Award), An Angel In Australia and Bettany's Book. His novels The Chant of Jimmy Blacksmith, Gossip from the Forest, and Confederates were all shortlisted for the Booker Prize, while Bring Larks and Heroes and
Three Cheers For The Paraclete won the Miles Franklin Award. 

The People's Train was longlisted for the Miles Franklin Award and shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers Prize, South East Asia division.

Visit Thomas Keneally's Booktopia Author Page

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