THE SMALL NEEDLE OF DR. LARGE by John Ellis Large

THE SMALL NEEDLE OF DR. LARGE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Whoever chose this title as the best of all possible titles for this collection of editorials from weekly parish newspapers written by Dr. John Ellis Large, did so with an eye to stimulating curiosity rather than to give a sure lead to the nature of the contents. Dr. Large's purpose, he says, is to communicate a religious concept, but not to do so solemnly, sentimentally or heavily; to approach a weighty theme with a light touch. He writes to provoke a response, whether it be negative or affirmative. Using some familiar event from the day's news or some recent event that is well known, he draws the religious analogy with zest and fervor, and with special attention to (and not consideration for) sacred cows. This is doubtless ""the needle"". But sometimes it's the scalpel, the bull-dozer or block-buster he uses, and the language is always trenchant and picturesque. Some may charge him with irreverence, and he couldn't care less; others will say that his is the only way to communicate with a world that needs to be stabbed awake to the deeper significance of all that is happening around or within them. Many will smile as they read this book; some will squirm with discomfort, while others will slam it shut with impatience and anger. His research occasionally lets him down, as when he talks about the crumbling of Jerusalem's walls to the sound of trumpets, but he's an impatient parson with an eye to the greater truth beyond the illustrative fact. His intentions are so admirable that he deserves not to be needled overmuch.

Pub Date: April 30th, 1962
Publisher: Prentice-Hall