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THE CLOSE Signed 1st

Breyer, Chloe

ISBN 10: 0465007147 / ISBN 13: 9780465007141
Published by Basic Books, New York, 2000
From Rare Book Cellar (Pomona, NY, U.S.A.)

AbeBooks Seller Since November 24, 2001 Seller Rating 5-star rating

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Very Good in a Very Good dust jacket. ; Signed and inscribed by author on title Page; 8vo 8" - 9" tall; Original unclipped dust jacket protected by archival Brodart cover. All domestic orders shipped protected in a Box. ; Signed by Author. Bookseller Inventory # 49429

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Bibliographic Details

Title: THE CLOSE Signed 1st

Publisher: Basic Books, New York

Publication Date: 2000

Binding: Hardcover

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

Edition: First Edition; First Printing.

About this title


Set in the context of the Church Year, The Close is an enthralling account of one young woman's spiritual journey. It is both a personal meditation on faith, in the spirit of Kathleen Norris's Cloister Walk, and a fascinating behind-the-scenes story of a graduate student's first year, in the mode of Scott Turow's One L. Raised in a liberal, interfaith home, Breyer, responding to an inner call to a spiritual vocation, began her training at New York's General Theological Seminary in 1997. She describes her intense immersion in daily prayer, the rigors and rewards of the academic program, and the challenging tension between secular and spiritual that marks her training, including working as a chaplain at Bellevue Hospital. She probes the day-to-day meanings of such profound issues as exaltation, enlightenment, and redemption, illuminating the unique experience of a young person of faith preparing to live and hoping to thrive in a secular modern world.


In some respects, Chloe Breyer's The Close does for seminary what Scott Turow's One L did for law school. It describes a student's initiation into an academic world that holds great mystique for many people on the outside. Subtitled "A Young Woman's First Year at Seminary," Breyer's memoir is an intimate glimpse at her 1997 entry into the Episcopalian General Theological Seminary in New York. Breyer's story is structured by the liturgical calendar (beginning with Advent and ending at Pentecost)--a significant decision, which summarizes one aspect of Breyer's understanding of what it means to live a Christian life. "What distinguishes everyone in my class from graduate students in secular fields is that each of us has a story woven into the Story that begins with Genesis and ends with Revelation," Breyer explains. Having grown up in a liberal, secular household, Breyer was often confronted with the blunt question, "Why seminary?" when she headed down the path to ordination. This book is an eloquent answer to that question. "Communicating my own explanation [to the question of why I'm in Seminary] in a fresh way that doesn't sound like a hackneyed campaign speech or an over-the-top sales pitch helps to strengthen my faith," Breyer writes. "Offering a testimony about God's work in my life gives me faith ... that, with God, there is strength and meaning to be found in seeking to put the interest of others before my own." Breyer's stories about her immersion in daily prayer, her academic adventures, and her work as a chaplain at Bellevue Hospital all make compelling reading. She's a twentysomething Kathleen Norris, and The Close is worth a close look. --Michael Joseph Gross

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