Cover image for Earth has no sorrow
Earth has no sorrow
Blake, Michelle.
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Publication Information:
New York : G.P. Putnam's Sons, 2001.
Physical Description:
257 pages ; 24 cm
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The Tentmaker made an exciting debut on the mystery scene-one that promised "many good things to come," said the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Now Earth Has No Sorrow finds Lily Connor, tall and skinny, an unusual figure in her jeans, hand-tooled cowboy boots, and clerical collar, still in Boston, running her Women's Center downtown, and serving on an ecumenical council whose purpose is to study anti-Semitism in the Church. But when one of the council-sponsored events is disrupted by a sophisticated, vitriolic hate crime and a dear friend disappears, Lily is thrown into the middle of a dangerous game that will not only test her faith, but will put everything-and everyone-she knows and loves in jeopardy. In The Tentmaker, Michelle Blake gave us an unforgettable character-in Earth Has No Sorrow, she's done that and much more, combining a fast-moving plot and a fresh setting with an uncommonly rich depth of feeling.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Lily Connor is an Episcopalian priest in Boston who wears jeans and cowboy boots, has a Catholic lover who is a police photographer, works on anti-bias issues, and entertains doubts about her faith and her clerical role on just about every page of this overtly gimmicky yet thought-provoking sequel to The Tentmaker (1999). Lily and her friend Anna, a Catholic whose family was sent to Auschwitz for harboring Jews, arrive early at a Holocaust memorial service at the Episcopalian cathedral in Boston. They find the altar desecrated with a Nazi flag. Shortly after the service, Anna disappears. As Lily excavates Anna's past for clues (excerpts from Anna's taped memories of living in Nazi-occupied Poland are particularly harrowing), she discovers her friend's connection to a contemporary conservative hate group and its connection to past and planned violence. Strong on issues of faith and social justice, a bit wobbly on plot. --Connie Fletcher

Publisher's Weekly Review

Following Blake's acclaimed first mystery, The Tentmaker (1999), Texas-born Lily Connor, the Episcopalian priest who's human, intelligent and caring, returns in a superbly written and compelling novel set during the reflective period of Lent. Dressing in her usual garb of jeans, sweater, cowboy boots and clerical collar, Lily is the director of the Women's Center in downtown Boston. She also serves on the ecumenical council and the Holocaust remembrance committee. When Charlie Cooper, a divinity school friend and Episcopal monk, and Anna Banieka, a Holocaust survivor, enter the Episcopal cathedral of St. Michael's and All Angels to check on preparations for the service that will conclude the remembrance day activities, they're faced with a vicious hate crime. After Anna disappears, Lily seeks the aid of her boyfriend, police photographer Tom Casey, to help find her. Lily's quest for the truth takes her on a dangerous journey of both body and spirit that winds up with a heart-stopping climax and some disturbing revelations about the people in her life. The author exposes the very souls of her unforgettable characters with honesty, poignancy and wit. Rich settings and eloquent prose further enhance this most satisfying story, which will send new readers seeking the first in the series and leave those already hooked longing for the next addition. Agent, Gail Hochman. (June 4) FYI: The author also publishes under the name Michelle Blake Simons. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

In this sequel to The Tentmaker, Blake's successful series debut, an ugly hate crime disrupts a Holocaust memorial service presided over by Episcopal priest Lily Connor, after which the event's main speaker (and Lily's good friend) goes missing. When Lily investigates, she discovers that her friend had ties to an invidious religious group. Taut and thought-provoking, with an emphasis on character development and religious reflection; for most collections. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.