This is the sort of book that is ideal for giving to elderly aunts. If they are decent sorts, they admired Pope John and will welcome a book about him. The very best sort of aunt to give this to is the kind who wouldn't know a good joke if one of them sat up and laughed in her face. Too many of these stories are not at all funny--worse, too many are pointless and none of them are authenticated. For instance, there is the story of the papal secretary who was asked what Pope John was up to. The answer was, ""Being Pope."" Only someone easily conditioned by the title could find the smile in that. Some of the stories emphasize his unquestioned good nature while others illustrate examples of his simple goodness; most, however, are not strong enough to evoke the image of the man whose warmth and humor conquered a world of different faiths. Collected by a Vatican-based journalist and smoothly translated from the German.