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The Grand Inquisitor (Crossroad Book) Paperback – May 1, 2008
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"Zmirak's work is typically . . . well, not typical. . . . Carla Millar's illustrations bring flesh and blood to the text. The result is a sort of action movie in Miltonic verse." InsideCatholic.com
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Top Customer Reviews
At first glance, it seems designed specifically to freak out everyone in its numerous potential overlapping markets--an intricately Gothic comic book, its dialogue written in elaborate blank verse, its plot inspired by and title borrowed from Dosdoyevsky's heavy-going Grand Inquisitor, and filled with all manner of strange hellfire, Marian visions, doctrinal arguments, and one deeply creepy Infant of Prague statue. But the author knows all that, already, and it is to his credit he forged ahead to produce this suspensful theological roller-coaster ride of a graphic novel.
The brilliance of John Zmirak's first graphic novel, The Grand Inquisitor, is precisely that its genre-bending, everything-but-the-sacristy-sink extravagance works so well. Uptight crypto-Jansenists will probably initially dismiss it as frivolous, beige Catholics as a Traddy screed, but those who actually read the text, and consider its elaborately-drawn pages for more than five seconds, will be rewarded.
(Plus, the illustrations have all sorts of wonderful little surprises embedded within them--conclaves, Tridentine liturgies, Cardinal Mahony playing golf, and my favorite, the Infant of Prague in full armor.)
The tale is simple, but all its permutations are profound. Sometime in the near future, a papal conclave drags on as the College of Cardinals finds itself at a deadlock. Tension mounts outside the Vatican walls. The liberals stage a walkout and hurl their scarlet robes to the crowd below in protest. The few remaining electors choose a complete unknown as the next pontiff, an African monk from a forgotten Traditionalist order.Read more ›
Catholics and non-Catholics will enjoy the excellent storyline and art. Get the book.
Ever since the moment of its inception, the Catholic church has faced seemingly insurmountable challenges.
In the last, unlamented century, secularism and atheism have attacked the church relentlessly. Millions fell away in Europe. Communists sent priests and nuns to the gulag, murdered them, or sent them to insane asylums. The 20th century had more martyrs than any century before. Those who stood firm in the church against battalions of those who chanted: change, change, change, were derided.
But at the core of the church is not men with their failings. It is the Holy Spirit, guiding it always to the truth. And that is the truth told in this graphic novel.
It's so unique, such a strange and intelligent story, that I think it is one of the most remarkable books I have ever read. The pictures are wonderful. The language spare but gripping.
For every traditional Catholic, this a book to savor, and to send on to your friends and children.
Zmirak shows, brilliantly, I think, how false traditionalism and false progressivism share a common vision, which leaves out the gospel of divine love and mercy. Hope is held out that the progressive is not finally damned, because the God he refused to serve was not the true God, but the Accuser--in Hebrew, Satan. After all, he did not conspire against Catholicism for selfish reasons, as the reviewer claims, but precisely for the salvation of souls.
Those of us who cling to either side of the sad debates of the last century are not ready for Zmirak's message. I pray that the new generations will be.
The Pope has died. In CONCLAVE to elect the next(final/Peter II?)Holy Father conflict erupts:the "liberal"(pro-abortion;pro-divorce-pro-homosexual; "anti-dogma" Post-modernist)faction storms out in protest.Cardinal Mwome of Africa is arrested and interrogated by the Cardinal Grand Inquisitor. Mwome is to be the next(traditional,in the cast of John Paul II...and Jesus)Pope.
The stage is set for startling(often terrifying)debate between The Man of Faith
and the Man of Sin who would use the gift of Faith to defy God's plan of Salvation
(the Cross of Christ-"If you would be MY disciple...you must pick-up your cross, AND FOLLOW ME). Echoing Dostoevsky's Inquisitor,this Cardinal challenges Christ with complaint that this Command(despite all the Lord's suffering-offered GRACE)is too hard;unfair and a road map for humanity's personal & collective Damnation(blisteringly illustrated with Bosch-like visions of Hell).
Against arguments of Free Will and(genuine)Choice are offered anti-Commands of Post-modernism and moral relativism (You may not smoke; but Abortion...60,000,000 since Roe v.Wade...is a "Civil Right").Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Oh gosh this book has some whack theology. And the art was really hit or miss. As a Catholic or non-Catholic I'd say definitely give this a pass.... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Jam
John Zmirak is a genius! I enjoy all of his works. I Loved Mahoney golfing with Law!Published 11 months ago by Howard Campbell
This is not a typical comic book, not an action adventure fantasy type story. The Grand Inquisitor is a long theological discussion. Read morePublished 13 months ago by ZWXXYZ
I am interested in religion and was intrigued by this book when I purchased it used. The art is very detailed, the artist is very good at portraits of aged men. Read morePublished on April 18, 2011 by Roberta
This book presents an alarming but interesting interpretation of the "liberal" vs. the "traditional" views of the Catholic Church from the perspective of Dostoevsky's section in... Read morePublished on January 7, 2010 by Marie A. Dean
In a modern twist on Dostoevsky's parable of the Grand Inquisitor, this odd graphic novel asserts that the problems of the post-conciliar Catholic Church can be attributed to the... Read morePublished on February 12, 2009 by J. Michael
Well, being an artist, I LOVE the style of art that Ms. Millar executes in graphic novel, very much reminds me of Byzantine art. I cannot imagine the great patience Ms. Read morePublished on January 10, 2009 by MAHJr
This book was marketed as the continuation of the dialogue between Christ and the Grand Inquisitor in "The Brothers Karamozov."
It didn't seem to do it for me. Read more