Francis, the People's Pope

Seven Stories. Mar. 2018. 256p. notes. ISBN 9781609807603. pap. $17.95. REL
In 2013, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio was elected Pope of the Catholic faith and took the name Francis. Much of his personal history, including his youth, direct involvement in Argentina's political turmoil during the "Dirty War," and various bureaucratic paths to becoming Pope are detailed in this latest graphic biography from Pulitzer Prize finalist Rall (Snowden; Trump). The volume also includes broader context for Francis's times, from detailed looks at the papacy of John Paul II and Benedict XVI to less-well-known aspects, such as the reforms making up Vatican II, the far reach of liberation theology, and even general differences between Catholicism and Protestantism. And while political cartooning firebrand Rall might seem like an odd choice to create a book about a global religious leader, he rises to the occasion and presents a balanced and ultimately positive look at how the compassionate Pope Francis injects true humanity into one of the world's most powerful positions.
VERDICT Surprisingly energized about Francis's possibilities but without blinders to the history of the Catholic faith, Rall delivers a far-left sermon on a man he respects with informational tidbits that will expand the knowledge of anyone seeking more about the People's Pope.
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