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Publisher's Summary

Pope John Paul II is one of the most famous and influential political figures of the world. Now, best-selling author and journalist John Cornwell has written an accessible and provocative portrait of this highly charged figure, focusing primarily on the last five years and the major world events, and scandals within the Church, that have impacted the papacy. The result is a thoughtful assessment of John Paul II's legacy to the Church.

In an age when many people see the Catholic Church as an institution in crisis, Cornwell raises the level of debate by posing difficult questions; chief among them is the effectiveness of a system that grants lifetime power to an individual vulnerable to the vicissitudes of aging and illness.

©2004 John Cornwell; (P)2004 Books on Tape

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  • Sam
  • dardanelle, AR, United States
  • 02-25-11

poorly done

A thoughtful, mature, and unflinching assessment of JPII's papacy would be welcome; Audible could use an alternative to Weigel's various exercises in hagiography. But this book is a bit tawdry. Combining, with a sort of tabloid sensibility, about 50% fact with 30% occasionally strained inference and guesswork, and another 20% dubious gossip this book is probably not worth the serious reader's time. The silly scandal-mongering tone of the book is hardly helped by the narrator, either: John Lee' s arch and almost prissy style exaggerates the book's already considerable problems of tone. Thumbs down.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful