The Bad Catholic’s Guide to the Seven Deadly Sins, a review

23416lgI have to start off this review by saying that this book has been read piecemeal for the last few months.  Instead of devouring the pages all at once, I opted to read bits and pieces in between other selections I was reading for review.  And, in the long run, I think that’s the best approach for this particular work.

Mr. Zmirak has taken what some might consider a very ‘serious’ subject ( the seven deadly sins) and brought a sense of levity while still respecting the true seriousness of each topic covered.

Within the pages, you will find both some background to each vice as well as the corresponding virtue along with ample examples to really solidify things.  If that wasn’t enough, there’s a quiz following each presentation of the vice and corresponding virtue just to see if you’re paying attention.  Things are then rounded out with suggested activities to help us mere mortals continue to strive towards the ultimate goal of joining the saints in heaven.

The tone of the book is what some might consider a bit ‘snarky.’   That term is something that I have associated with a particular blend of short, almost snippy quips at subject matter that could demand lengthy treatises.  Yet, when using it to describe this book to a few friends at church, I was met with quizzical glances.  So, a quick visit to the online dictionary had me wondering if snarky is even the best way to describe the author’s sometimes comically crass treatment of the material.

If you like your discussions of man’s sinful nature on the dry side, then this is NOT the title for you.  But, as someone who relishes inclusion of humor while delving into what could be considered ‘heavy’ material, this was just the ticket.  Even the inclusion of illustrations and images to support the text helps to break things up nicely for ‘digestion.’

Aside from providing an entertaining environment for contemplation of the heavy-weights of sin, reading this title has wet my own appetite for more from this particular author.  And, I know that this title will be pulled off the shelf repeatedly to allow a more leisurely gleaning of the wealth of information contained within its pages.  The treatment of the material adheres to teachings of the Roman Catholic Church in what some may consider to be orthodox in nature.  Given all of that, I am seriously contemplating a way to utilize this book with P for apologetics over the next few years.  (Some material such as discussion of Kinsey and his sex ‘research’ might be a bit much for him at the moment, though.)

The Bad Catholic’s Guide to the Seven Deadly Sins retails for $14.95 and is available through online retails like Aquinas and More Catholic Goods.

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Disclaimer ~
I wrote this review of The Bad Catholic’s Guide to the Seven Deadly Sins for the Tiber River Blogger Review program, created by Aquinas and More Catholic Goods, your source for Baptism Gifts and First Communion Gifts. For more information and to purchase, please visit Aquinas and More Catholic Goods.

Tiber River is the first Catholic book review site, started in 2000 to help you make informed decisions about Catholic book purchases.

I was sent a copy of The Bad Catholic’s Guide to the Seven Deadly Sins as part of the Tiber River review program for the purpose of completing this review.  No other compensation was provided and the opinions expressed are my own.

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A Catholic mom to four boys, Laura has been homeschooling since 2005. Currently, one son is in school while the others are at home. When not 'working', she is enjoying life up in Alaska.


  1. This looks interesting! I'll have to check this book out!

  2. I love the cover. Thanks for the review. I Tend to add a little humor when tackling the tougher subjects, too.


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