A Book of Uncommon Prayer

A Book of Uncommon Prayer

100 Celebrations of the Miracle & Muddle of the Ordinary 

Author: Brian Doyle

Price: $14.95

Format: Paperback

Pages: 192

Trim size: 5 x 7 inches

ISBN: 978-1-933495-62-0

Imprint: Sorin Books

On-sale date: November 24, 2014

More Prayer and Meditation, Prayer Books and Devotionals, Spirituality


Acclaimed, award-winning essayist and novelist Brian Doyle (1956-2017)—whose writing, in the words of Mary Oliver, is “a gift to us all”—offers one hundred original prayers that evoke his deep Catholic belief in the mystery and miracle of the ordinary (and the whimsical) in human life.  

In A Book of Uncommon Prayer: 100 Celebrations of the Miracle & Muddle of the Ordinary, which was named "A Best Spiritual Book of the Year" by Spirituality & Practice, you will find a series of prayers unlike any of the beautiful, formal, orthodox prayers of the Catholic tradition or the warm, extemporized prayers heard from pulpits and dinner tables. Doyle’s often-dazzling, always-poignant prayers include eye-opening hymns to shoes and faith and family. In Doyle’s words, “the world is crammed with miracles, so crammed and tumultuous that if we stop, see, savor, we are agog,” and the pages of his book give voice and body to this credo. By focusing on experiences that may seem the most unprayerful (one prayer is titled “Prayer on Seeing Yet Another Egregious Parade of Muddy Paw Prints on the Floor”), he gives you permission to discover the joys and treasures in what he often calls the muddle of everyday life.  

Features & Benefits 

  • Doyle’s combination of imagination and linguistic playfulness dovetail with his deep Catholic ethos. “Catholic is my language,” he has written, “Catholic is the coat I wear, Catholic is the house in which I live.”
  • Doyle wrote many books of fiction, essays, and poems and hundreds of short pieces in virtually every Catholic and Christian periodical that exists. 
  • This is not a collection of previously published essays and poems but an original work, none of whose contents have appeared in print before.


"Doyle's . . . gratitude, his sweet lyrical reaching, is a gift to us all."

“Brian Doyle’s writing is driven by his passion for the human, touchable, daily life, and equally for the untouchable mystery of all else . . . [H]is gratitude, his sweet lyrical reaching, is a gift to us all.”

Mary Oliver
Pulitzer Prize-winning author of American Primitive

"Amazing Prayers!"

"Pound for pound, Brian Doyle is the best writer of spirituality in Catholicland, and I doubt if any writer can match him in any land. These amazing prayers -- in thanks for decent shoes, for cashiers and checkout counter folks, for the reader who photocopies this prayer and shares it with friends and sisters -- and so much more, are where the rubber meets the road. This is Brian Doyle's time, and your time to read his wonderful books if you haven't before. A Book of Uncommon Prayer is a great place to start."

Michael Leach
Author of Why stay Catholic? Unexpected Answers to a Life-Changing Question

"Born with a silver tongue and big heart."

“Some people can write. Some people can feel. Brian Doyle, born with a silver tongue and a big heart, is among the lucky few who can do both.”

Anne Fadiman
Author of The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down

"An extraordinary writer whose tales will endure."

“To read Brian Doyle is to apprehend, all at once, the force that drives Mark Twain, and Walt Whitman, and James Joyce, and Emily Dickinson, and Francis of Assisi, and Jonah under his gourd. Brian Doyle is an extraordinary writer whose tales will endure.”

Cynthia Ozick
National Book Critics' Circle Award-winning author of Quarrel and Quandary

"A fine quick mind."

“Brian Doyle has a fine quick mind alert for anomaly and quirk--none of them beyond his agile pen.”

Peter Matthiessen
National Book Award-winning author of Shadow Country

Purchase on Kindle.

Purchase on Nook.

Purchase on Kobo.

Purchase on Google Play