The Church of the Kevin by Kevin O'Brien was named among "The Best Books I Read in 2010..." Ignatius Press Authors, Editors, and Friends, January 1, 2011. Dale Ahlquist lamented "Even though it's only 55 pages long, it seemed shorter."



“The Church of the Kevin” is a short book which uses material from his newsletter for his comedy murder mysteries he performed across the country along with some essays from his blog. Like most humor directed pieces it is hit and miss, but mostly hit. There is a lot of funny stuff contained. I especially liked his re-imagining of “It’s a wonderful life” where Clarence is a materialistic determinist with a major in moral relativism. Another funny bit was his take off on the million monkey-infinite time-Shakespeare meme that takes it in an interesting direction considering how inane the original meme is.

I really liked the essays in the section of the book “Trying to be serious” which combined both humor and critical content, a combination I especially enjoy and one in which Kevin O’Brien pulls off quite well. The Guide to Bad Homilies would have been especially funny if it wasn’t especially true – though we often laugh because something is true. His spending of a Christmas with relatives and the conversations that ensued considering that their points of view did not match Kevin’s in the realm of the Church and morality showed an issue we often come against ourselves along with some commentary on Seinfield and The Office. “How to make bad art” was an essay on the subject close to my heart considering just how much bad Christian/Catholic art there is out there from statues and paintings to film. What Christians are willing to accept as the height of art is quite depressing to me.

The last section included some poems. Now I generally have a poetic tin ear, but I enjoyed Kevin’s poems. Though that might not exactly be a ringing endorsement for him. Here is a sample of one that I really liked.

A Triolet for Pagan-Christians
Oh, come, oh come, enneagram
And save us from His precious love
We pimp ourselves for Fraud and Sham
Oh, come, oh come, enneagram
Who needs the Father, Son, and Dove?
Oh, come, oh come, enneagram
And save us from His precious love

Jeff Miller, http://www.splendoroftruth.com/curtjester/

2011/04/kevinapalooza/