Piers Paul Read 'too Catholic' for modern Britain
Imagaine that. A novel about a pope that is 'too Catholic'. Outrageous. One wonders if a book about His Grace might not be 'too Anglican', not to mention 'too Protestant'. Or is it simply that, like bibles, prayers and support for marriage and the family, it is simply 'too Christian'?
The novel, described as a thriller, tells 'a fictional tale of a former priest accused of terrorist activities against the real backdrop of the death of John Paul II and election of Benedict XVI'.
Riveting stuff. The Church of England couldn't even begin to compete with such religious spectacle and political theatre. It sounds like everything that a religio-political novel should be, and doubtless contains an awful lot more substance than the absurd fantasies of Dan Brown (which have earned millions for both author and agent). But Mr Read has been rejected because he is an orthodox Roman Catholic 'and this sentiment comes over in the thriller'.
Mr Aitken apparently told Mr Read to 'take out some of the Catholicism'.
Mr Read responded, quite rightly, that he didn't want to.
It is a curious persecution of an orthodox Roman Catholic, for if Dan Brown has established anything with his Opus Dei novels it is that there is an enormous (and lucrative) market for works of fiction with religio-political conspiracy themes, even (or especially) in an anti-Christian age of rabid secularism.
Perhaps Mr Read should turn his hand to writing a novel about Christians who behead Muslims. His agent would be sure to accept that.