"Lakeland offers us many opportunities to question and to disgrace, and I have filled the book's margins with objections and exclamation marks. More important are formulations that go to the heart of what is dear to us in great books."
"The Wounded Angel considers the uses of so-called secular literature to convey illuminations of mystery, the unsayable, the hidden otherness, the Holy One. Saint Ignatius urged us to find God in all things, and Paul Lakeland demonstrates how that's theologically possible in fictions whose authors had no spiritual or religious intentions. A fine and much-needed reflection."
Ron Hansen, Santa Clara University
"As both commentary and prescription for our times, The Wounded Angel offers a `theology of literature' that revitalizes religious imagination through the interaction with fiction. The Wounded Angel is itself a patient, thoughtful act of literary and religious imagination. It entices us with the rewards of deep reflection and invites us, through fiction or through faith, to slow down and attend to the mystery of the holy."
Kathleen M. Fisher, Catholic Books Review
"Renowned ecclesiologist Paul Lakeland explores in depth one of his earliest but perduring interests: the impact of reading serious modern fiction. He convincingly argues for an inner link between faith and religious imagination. Drawing on a copious cross section of thoughtful novels (not all of them `edifying'), he reasons that the joy of reading is more than entertainment but rather potentially salvific transformation of our capacity to love and be loved. Art may accomplish what religion does not always achieve. The numerous titles discussed here belong on one's must-read list!"
Michael A. Fahey, SJ, Fairfield University
"Paul Lakeland claims that `the work of the creative artist is always somehow bumping against the transcendent.' What a lovely thought and what a perfect summary of the subtle and significant argument made in The Wounded Angel. Gracefully moving between theology and literature, religious content and narrative form, Lakeland reminds us both of how imaginative faith is and of how imbued with mystery and grace literature is. Lakeland's range of interests—Coleridge and Louise Penny, Marilynne Robinson and Shusaku Endo—is wide, and his ability to trace connections between these texts and relate them to large-scale theological questions is impressive. This is an essential read for those interested in the relationship between the religious and literary imaginations."
Anthony Domestico, Assistant Professor of Literature, Purchase College, SUNY
"It is Lakeland's rightful conviction that much can be done today for the Catholic faith by attending to and healing our impoverished imaginations. Arguably, this can especially be realized through good fiction, whether or not it explicitly broaches religious themes. Seeking to yoke together two distinct fields of academic knowledge is a bold enterprise, and one that Lakeland is to be commended for."
"Lakeland's book will enhance any reader's appreciation of the connections between faith and fiction."
American Catholic Studies