FTC ALERT! This book is being reviewed through the Catholic Blogger Book Review Program via The Catholic Company. They sent me this book for free not as a bribe, but in order to facilitate my reviewing of the book, which until the perfection of orbital mind-control lasers, would be impossible without a copy.
The book: How To Pray Well by Raoul Plus
The review: Anyone want to take a guess as to what the book is about? Anyone? Yes, you in the back. Yes, that’s right, it’s about how to pray well.
The book is divided into discussions of four different types of prayer: adoration, thanksgiving, penitence, and petition. Each of those types is then defined, discussed, and the history given. The chapters are well-researched, and each kind of prayer is explained in relation to the Christian life in terms of why it’s necessary and some common misconceptions about it.
The discussions are thorough and go from a high-level overview to a low-level analysis. This book is dense. I was unable to read more than a chapter at a time because everything requires a lot of digesting. There are bundles of insights on these pages, and although it’s a small book, it isn’t a fast read. Don’t bring it on an airplane.
The author backs up all his assertions with quotes from scripture and from saints and other religious authorities.
The author assumes a certain familiarity with prayer, scripture, and the teachings of the church. I’m uncertain if this was written primarily for seminarians or professed religious (it was written almost a hundred years ago) but it might well have been.
Overall, I’d recommend this book for those who are ready for an in-depth examination of prayer after having gotten down the basics, but who feel they need a better understanding of what they’re doing and how they’re doing it.