The Face of the Deep, by Michael Mitton
Had trouble putting it down! Rev. Mitton takes us on an exciting adventure, as a burnt-out Vicar meets the not-so-angelic Dorchadas and his worldly and otherworldly friends!
Two years have passed since Rev. Douglas Romer’s darling Irish wife, Saoirse, was brutally murdered by an apparently Islamist, drive-by assassin in Cairo. He hasn’t got over the loss and breaks down at the start of his sermon one Sunday. The Church wardens show little sympathy and Douglas decides to travel to Dingle in Ireland, in the hope of finding some comfort from his late wife’s Aunt Ruby, the only kind-hearted member of her family. Instead, he is approached by a strange man with the even stranger name of Dorchadas, who makes preposterous claims as to who he really is.
Several encounters with Dorchadas’ present and past friends force Douglas to face some very delicate issues: terrorism, marital unfaithfulness, spiritual doubt, scandalous behaviour of clergymen. Mitton dramatically and effectively portrays the various characters’ emotions, especially those of the central figure, Douglas. It made me wonder how much of the story is autobiographical!
Can the victim of ecclesiastical abuse after a teenage affair with a Catholic priest, or the repentant ex-IRA killer, help Douglas resolve his despair? Will he regain his faith in a loving, just God after all he has been through?
This is the captivating first book of Dorchadas Trilogy and is soon to come out as an audiobook. It’s well worth reading, but would have benefitted from professional final editing and formatting. It tempts the reader to delve into the sequels: The Fairest of Dreams and Beauty Born Anew.