Isadore's Secret: Sin, Murder & Confession in a Northern Michigan Town

Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Mardi Link
I enjoyed an earlier book by this author and decided to give Isadore’s Secret a try. This was named a Michigan Notable Book this year (2010), and is a rather gripping account of the mysterious disappearance of a young nun in a northern Michigan town and the national controversy that followed when she turned up dead and buried in the basement of the church.

This true story was the basis for the Broadway play The Runner Stumbles and the 1979 film of the same name, starring Dick Van Dyke, Kathleen Quinlan and Maureen Stapleton.  From the book…

..”Swinging planks of lantern light shine through the musty air and onto the dirt floor of the church basement. The oddly glowing rectangles syncopate over the damp ground and illuminate even the darkest, stooped-down corners of the space beyond. The only sound is the ragged breathing of two men, a young parish priest and a much older laborer. Aboveground these men belong completely to this place, in both body and soul. A glimpse of their faces anywhere in the sanctuary, the rectory, the school, the barn, or the gardens would be a welcome sight. But here below, these men of Isadore are interlopers. Only trespassers would sneak silently into the church's sloped underbelly without witness to carry out such a sinful and secret errand as this one. Despite their tools, and their lantern, and their resolve, neither is equipped for the task at hand or for what is to come….”

Diane, Administration

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