Thursday, 21 March 2013

My Next Book

Happy Spring! With spring comes the news that Ignatius Press has made Ceremony of Innocence available for pre-order. (The 'A' in the title should be off the cover when the covers are made!)

Here is what Ignatius says about it:

Scottish Catholic journalist Catriona McClelland comes home to her Frankfurt apartment to find her German ex-boyfriend Dennis sitting nervously on the couch. Police arrive. A Canadian student, Suzy Davis, has been drowned, and both Cat and Dennis are suspects in her murder. 

Subsequent police interviews trigger Cat's memories of her reluctant friendship with Suzy, an enthusiastic supporter of left-wing organizations. The two women had become acquainted while terrorist bombings, student unrest and neo-Nazi riots brought Germany to a boiling point. Cat had tried to maintain her professional aloofness while writing reports on these events, but the political became personal when Suzy fell for Dennis and forced Cat to confront her hypocrisy in refusing either to marry the much younger man or to let him go. 

Ripped from the headlines, Ceremony of Innocence is a very contemporary novel of Europe on the edge of social breakdown. Train stations are bombed and migrants targeted for violence as journalists and other tastemakers watch from their positions of privilege.

Cummings' realistic narrative does not describe the feats of heroes. Rather, it unnervingly lays bare the way religious faith and moral reasoning can be easily manipulated and compromised.

 Whoo-hoo! Not my usual sort of thing, eh? And I hope the greatest Roman Catholic thriller writer of the 20th century, Graham Greene, would approve. It's very much in memory of him.

Let's see. What can I say? Well, first of all it's not autobiographical. I did meet someone who reminds me greatly of Catriona 20 years ago, but I haven't seen her in 19. And there is someone in Germany who looks surprisingly like Dennis, but he is not really like him. But I know where their flat is, and as I don't know the current occupants, I haven't been in it for some years.

Second, you will really like this book if you are German or know Germany at all.

Third, this is not a good set-text with which to home-school children. It is a grown-up book, with grown-up themes, but I sent the manuscript to my parish priest without a moment's qualm. (He loved it.)

I recommend pre-ordering straight from Ignatius.  I feel strongly that Catholics have the responsibility to support Catholic bookshops and Catholic publishers, so that both can actually thrive and be open to taking a chance on relatively unknown Catholic writers like myself. This is especially true for fiction. In the pyramid of "who makes the money" in publishing, the lion's share goes not to the author, nor to the publisher, but to the bookseller. Therefore, it really does matter to the Catholic bookshops, Catholic publishers and Catholic writers where you buy a book.

Ignatius link here.

Meanwhile, I'm very grateful to Ignatius for having taken a chance on me--and on Catriona, Dennis, Suzy and all the people who walked into my head a few years ago. I love them like children, so I'm glad you're going to meet them, too.


Sarah said...

Whoo! I'm not able to pre-order until I'm back in the States due to credit card complications, but I'm looking forward to it! Especially since I will have left Germany, I have a feeling I will want to devour anything and everything that reminds me of it.


MaryJane said...

Congrats, Seraphic!

Sunnysaffer said...

Ooh!How exciting!! Your writing is such a joy to read Seraphic the thought of having a WHOLE BOOK to read soon makes me very happy. Thank you for all the hard work that I am sure went into it. I am off right now to order it (directly from Ignatius of course).

Christine Rebecca said...

TWENTY DOLLARS to ship to Ottawa?

*Sigh* It's going to have to be amazon, Auntie S.

(This is perhaps fitting as I am, after all, a perfidious protestant :P )

Anonymous said...

I run a Catholic bookstore, and I can guarantee that your book will be on the "staff recommendations" shelf just as soon as it comes in. :)


-Anonymous for This Time

american (not) in deutschland said...

Huzzah! I'll order once Lent is up and I'm allowed to buy books again!

Mena said...

Congratulations on another book published!! I may have to order this. Although I am still eagerly waiting for the Bodis Riper to come out in print... (Hint hint, Seraphic and any publishers.)

Jam said...

Hooray! I have placed my pre-order. May the book prosper!

Anonymous said...

Where to buy in the UK ?

Seraphic said...

Thanks, all!

Ignatius Press distributes its books in the UK through Gracewing.

Here is their page of "Foreign Distributors."

Eliza_Anne said...

Yay! Can't wait to read this book, but I too second publishing the Bodis Riper!

Jessica said...


Jen D said...

Ordered it...can't wait to read it! :)

Alisha said...


Seraphic said...

Thanks, girls! This is a new direction--or a leap of faith--for Ignatius, so I am sure all pre-orders will make those good folks very happy!

Catholic Bibliophagist said...

Yay! Good news indeed! I've been waiting hopefully for someone to publish your fiction ever since the days when you used to publish fiction installments online (which is what hooked me on your blog).


R said...

Sorry to be a pain, but is the pre-order only on the Ignatius Press page? I don't think it's on the page yet as it's a preorder?