Offbeat Spirituality, a first book by this Australian author, is exactly what publisher Frank Sheed claims in his foreword, ""a spiritual book of extreme practicality"". It is surely one of the best books on spirituality for laymen that has come along, in years. Mrs. Carswell doesn't resort to pietism or exhortation, but one doesn't read Offbeat Spirituality without being forced into serious spiritual stock-taking. Her first chapter poses four disquieting questions: 1. Why so many practicing Catholics are seemingly oblivious to the fact of their immorality and mediocrity; 2. Why GOOD Catholics so seldom show any signs of getting rid of their more glaring faults; 3. Why so few Catholics give the impression of being not only good but holy; 4. How far, if at all, the Church in her daily pastoral activity be held responsible?"" As she explores these problems in the light of Scripture, the dogmas, the liturgy, the writings of the spiritual masters, the new psychologies and her own observing mind, she arrives at answers which will both surprise and shock the reader. Her pointed observations on charity, heroic denial and the tragedy of ""not being a saint"" are subject matter for prolonged and repeated medication. Offbeat Spirituality is slated as a selection for the Spiritual Book Associates, and should be the subject of wide discussion during the coming months.