Graywolf Press, $16, 256 pp.
The best novel that has come or is likely to come out of the Catholic sexual child-abuse scandal appeared late last year, and it happens to be a work by a Jew in which no Catholic appears. Michael Lowenthal’s only contact with the Roman Catholic Church, so far as I know, is that he teaches creative writing at a Catholic university, Boston College.
Not to be coy, Avoidance is neither a novel with a Catholic setting nor a roman à...
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