In this series, we highlight books we think our readers may enjoy, written by authors affiliated with the Collegeville Institute.
Loving What Doesn’t Last: An Adoration of the Body
by Christina Kukuk
Morehouse Publishing, 2021
Christina Kukuk’s new book reminds us that what matters most are things don’t last forever. We find faith, hope, and love in the string of endings and beginnings that make a life: a mother who plants an orchard in her son’s memory, a girl’s struggle with food scarcity, an adolescent awakening to infatuation at summer camp, and a woman waiting hours for her lover’s recovery on a hospital’s transplant floor. In every fleeting moment from the first pangs of birth to our last breath, God is in all of it.
The Undertaking of Billy Buffone
by David Giuliano
Latitude 46, 2021
In his new novel, David Giuliano creates a story of trauma, humor, and redemption. Catherine, a newly minted preacher, moves to Twenty-Six Mile House, an isolated community in northern Ontario, and befriends the quirky undertaker Billy Buffone who has a disturbing secret he has carried for almost two decades. Billy’s best friend, now deceased, leads the reader through the traumatic events of today and those from the never-forgotten past. Giuliano has created a vivid portrait of lives intertwined in the search for connection amidst the uncovering of dormant truths a small town has tried to bury.
The Museum of Heartache
by Paul Luikart
Pski’s Porch, 2021
Like fireworks seen from a distance, Paul Luikart’s stories burst across the page and leave their imprint on your eye, while revealing details of the landscape beneath. Audrey Keown says of Paul Luikart’s new book of very short stories: “Luikart earns his spot on the shortlist of writers who can sink you right into the skin of a character in only a few lines. This collection of stories, some almost poetry, captures moments in his characters’ lives when they aren’t just down and out but squeezed in the vise of their circumstances, whether peculiar or mundane. In their shoes, you’ll grapple with what it means to be fully human and come out the other side changed.”