Blood on a Saint

Overview


Father Brennan Burke’s patience is tested to the limit when a young woman announces to the world that the Virgin Mary has appeared to her in his churchyard, and hordes of pilgrims, souvenir hawkers, and reporters converge on the scene. But, as unwelcome as these guests may be, they pale in comparison to yet another aggravation in Father Burke’s life, a controversial talk show host who clashes with Burke the minute he arrives in town.

Events take a darker turn when a body is ...

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Blood on a Saint

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Overview


Father Brennan Burke’s patience is tested to the limit when a young woman announces to the world that the Virgin Mary has appeared to her in his churchyard, and hordes of pilgrims, souvenir hawkers, and reporters converge on the scene. But, as unwelcome as these guests may be, they pale in comparison to yet another aggravation in Father Burke’s life, a controversial talk show host who clashes with Burke the minute he arrives in town.

Events take a darker turn when a body is found at the apparition site, and the talk show host is picked up for the murder. There is enough aggravation to go around, as lawyer Monty Collins learns when he takes on the loud-mouthed TV man as a client. Monty and Brennan both have a stake in uncovering the truth about the murder, and learn disturbing things about the accused and other suspects in the case. Problem is, Monty and Brennan cannot talk to each other about what they find out, because one is bound by solicitor-client confidentiality and the other by the seal of the confessional.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
★ 12/09/2013
Miracle or fraud? St. Bernadette's church in Halifax is thrown into the spotlight when the recently-fired parish secretary claims to have a vision of the Virgin Mary floating above a statue on the parish lawn. Father Brennan Burke is less than thrilled when a ragtag group of soapbox preachers, hustlers, and pious pilgrims descend and turn the church lawn into a circus. CTV even sends Pike Podgis, a controversial talk show host, to stage a faith vs. science debate between Fr. Brennan and an atheist sociology professor. Events take a sinister turn when a young woman is murdered at the scene, and Podgis is arrested for the crime. Fr. Brennan's drinking buddy, Monty Collins, is called upon to act as defense for the accused. Meanwhile, someone is tormenting Fr. Brennan in the confessional, divulging details of this and other past murders. As good friends, Monty and Fr. Brennan have a hard time discussing the case, as Monty is bound by solicitor-client privilege, and Fr. Brennan by the seal of the confessional. In this seventh book in her Collins-Burke series, Halifax lawyer and award-winning author Emery (Children in the Morning) uses strong characters and dialogue to deftly touch upon the paradoxes between superstition and belief, between reason and faith, and between justice and forgiveness. (Nov.)
From the Publisher

"Following Monty and Father Burke through the back streets, blues clubs and waterfront district of 1992 Halifax in search of the truth is an enjoyable quest . . . Emery skillfully blends homicide with wit, music, theology, quirky characters and a Nova Scotian atmosphere." —Kirkus Reviews
Library Journal
11/01/2013
Halifax duo attorney Monty Collins and Fr. Brennan Burke are driven apart when a loudmouth talk show host is accused of murder; trouble is, he's Collins's client and Burke's confessee. Seventh outing (after Death at Christy Burke's) for an Ellis Award winner.
Kirkus Reviews
2013-09-15
A blues-singing lawyer, an opera-loving priest and a loudmouthed talk-show host rock Halifax in this offbeat whodunit. Befanee Tate, the former secretary from St. Bernadette's, is in the midst of a wrongful-dismissal suit against the church when she claims to see the Virgin Mary near the statue of the church's namesake. Pilgrims flock to the statue and salty-tongued Father Brennan Burke reluctantly appears on CTV's Pike Podgis Show to discuss the supposed miracle. Instead, he makes a fool of Podgis. The TV host, a practitioner of scandal and shock journalism, creates plenty of both for himself when he's arrested for the murder of Jordyn Snider, a prominent worshiper at St. Bernadette's feet. Podgis can't even get respect from his defense attorney, Father Burke's friend Monty Collins, who nevertheless tries conscientiously to find an alternative explanation for Jordyn's death. Father Burke, prevented by the seal of the confessional from telling all he knows, struggles to protect a street missionary implicated in the murder. Following Monty and Father Burke through the back streets, blues clubs and waterfront district of 1992 Halifax in search of the truth is an enjoyable quest, even though the tale would have benefited from adding a few minor resolutions and subtracting one melodramatic moment in Monty's efforts to reunite his estranged family. Emery (Cecilian Vespers, 2009, etc.) skillfully blends homicide with wit, music, theology, quirky characters and a Nova Scotian atmosphere.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781770411227
  • Publisher: ECW Press
  • Publication date: 11/1/2013
  • Series: A Collins-Burke Mystery Series
  • Pages: 300
  • Sales rank: 1,138,763
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Anne Emery is a lawyer and the award-winning author of the Collins-Burke mystery series. The first book of the series, Sign of the Cross, won the Arthur Ellis Award for Best First Novel. The fifth book in the series, Children in the Morning, won a silver medal in the 2011 Independent Publisher Book Awards and the 2011 Dartmouth Book Award for Fiction. She lives in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

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