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The Shepherd's Calculus

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  149 ratings  ·  26 reviews
When journalist Peter Merrick is asked to write a eulogy for his mentor, Jesuit priest James Ingram, his biggest concern is doing right by the man. But when his routine research reveals disturbing ties to cases of abuse and clues to a shadowy deal that trades justice for power, everything he believed about his friend is called into question. With the US presidential electi ...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published 2017 by Cavan Bridge Press
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Average rating 3.97  · 
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Kimberly Chavez
Feb 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
“The truly terrifying thing about evil isn’t that it exists, Peter,” Ingram had said. “It’s that it manages to coexist with good in the places we least expect it. And always has.”

C.S. Farrelly uses the first half of The Shepherd’s Calculus to slowly build her characters and their individual plot lines. With their varied ages and experiences, it was difficult at times to follow their individual histories and how they came to be involved in this mystery. It’s just past the halfway point where she
Feb 03, 2018 rated it liked it
This novel's plot could be tomorrow's headlines. A presidential candidate so desperate to get elected illegal alliances are formed. A church so desperate to retain its economic power it skirts the law. Farrelly does a good job of exploring the relationship between church and state and the possible abuse of power by then both.

The book got off to a confusing start for me as characters in a contemporary scene filled in background material with memories. A character might be in a meeting remembering
Oct 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
Thanks to the publisher and author for the advanced copy in exchange for my honest review!

As many of you know, I'm a sucker for a political thriller. So when I read the synopsis for THE SHEPHERD'S CALCULUS by C.S. Farrelly, I was instantly intrigued. Normally I'm not a huge fan of religion being tied into books, but this one had a great balance as politics and religion become intertwined.

When Peter Merrick discovers his mentor has passed away, he is asked to write the eulogy for James Ingram - a
Cynthia Austin
Jul 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Corruption, scandals and cover ups.

Ms. Farrelly takes you to the heart of Washington DC and gives you an insiders view of how greed leads this Country. Politicians striking deals with religious leaders, molestation cases being overlooked and all the while, more money is being dumped into the mega churches of Catholic religion around the globe.

THE SHEPHERD'S CALCULUS is an awakening novel that weaves fiction around current events and shows just how much power We the People give this Nation. Very
Margaret Tidwell
Feb 16, 2018 rated it liked it
FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Partners in Crime in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

The Shepherd’s Calculus by C.S. Farrelly was a book that I am sure I would have loved if I was sick of politics right now. I am going read this book in a couple of years to see if my views change because I had a tough time staying interested in this book because of the politics that hap
Daniel Casey
Sep 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
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Farrelly writes sharp, compelling chapters that do an excellent job of doling out reveals, complications, and clues which leave both the characters and the readers actively engaging with the world of the story. Also, there’s a satisfying fairness to the depictions of the clergy and politicians, meaning they are not presented as cartoonish bad guys. A thriller is only as strong as its plot, and Farrelly does a skillful job of taking s
Feb 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018-read
Is there really a separation of Church and State? It’s in the Constitution but when power is abused by those in high standing, is it respected? And to what ends will those in power use it for their own personal gains? And for those that aren’t, what will they choose?

This is the first book I have read by this author and I was quite impressed with her writing style. It kept my interest throughout the entire book. The research was exceptional. The characters believable.

I will be watching for more w
Liah  Hayden
Nov 26, 2017 rated it liked it
A lot of names to keep track on in the beginning, but if you keep at it the book will "drag you in" and you will not put it down. If you don't like to read about the power game between the politics and the church in America, this might not be the book for you, but thrown in there is also underlying superstitions about sexual abuse and bribes to keep people silent. Generally a good read! ...more
Dec 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Farrelly is a writer whose career has spanned investment banking, government and international relations, and higher education. Her stage plays have been produced in New York City. The Shepherd’s Calculus is her first novel. She
Mar 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In her debut novel, The Shepherd's Calculus, author C.S. Farrelly weaves a compelling political thriller that delves into the intriguing intersection of politics and religion. It is a multi-layered tale that masterfully interweaves how power and money influence political and religious choices and decisions. Mix in deception, hidden agendas and dark secrets, political posturing, Church corruption, and the sobering child sexual abuse cases by priests, and you have an intriguing tale about a tangle ...more
Nov 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book follows several characters during an election campaign.
We meet members of the campaign teams, journalists and a bishop.
Each person has their history, their goals, and ambitions, their personal issues, their doubts, their beliefs.
Somehow, they all end up intertwined.
A journalist writing about his friend, and mentor, ends up uncovering files that lead him into an investigation about child molestation allegations. While he starts the investigation with the wrong idea, what he discovers
Oct 03, 2017 rated it liked it
drey’s thoughts:

Politics and religion get thoroughly entangled in C.S. Farrelly's The Shepherd's Calculus...

Peter Merrick is a man wrestling with his faith - and his life, to a certain extent - when he learns of the passing of a mentor. Asked to write the eulogy for Jesuit priest James Ingram, Peter quickly buries himself in his own past. When he inadvertently uncovers letters pointing to the Church's wrongdoings, Peter's not quite sure what to do. Or how far to go.

One coincidence too many le
Nov 29, 2017 rated it liked it
Thanks to the publisher and the author for the advanced copy in exchange for my honest review!
I don’t usually read political thriller, but even tho is not really my favorite genre I really liked this novel!

At the beginning it was a bit hard to keep up with all the different character and (apparently) unrelated storylines, but after a few chapters I quickly got intrigued by the story and its protagonists. It was beautiful to see all the different part of the book slowly colliding and intertwini
Jim Olearchik
Aug 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So I wasn't really sure I wanted to read this, considering how rough our last political election was on so many of us. But once I got into it, I was hooked. As a Jesuit-educated reader, I jumped right into the world and the mindsets of the characters, especially those conflicted about Catholicism.

And then the latest scandal and evidence of the huge cover up of abuse by the Church in Pennsylvania broke....and it was like this book was writing the news. Eerie. There were days when I had to think f
Mary Joan Burke
May 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Having been educated at a Jesuit college, lived through the Charismatic Movement in the Catholic faith, and now describing myself as a "recovering Catholic" I can only say " Bravo".
This book may be listed as fiction, but it is as realistic as possible. Fascinating, thought provoking and impossible to put down!

Ydgrg u want me to come over over a week to go before I left my phone at work today now that the government is a prod 736gf74gb4h4g
Janice S
May 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent read. Relevant storyline. Good writing. Many good thoughts and quotes concerning what religion should be but so often gets changed by MAN and man’s ambitions. Could easily be a conversation about politics as well.
Joe Vitucci
Jan 19, 2019 rated it liked it
Pretty interesting story containing a specific pedophile priest and one of his victims. Entwined in that are people working on a presidential re-election committee, a bishop, a reporter, and much more. Also contains an interesting fact about why priests can't marry. ...more
Kristi Duarte
May 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Although this is more of a political novel than religious fiction, I quite enjoyed it.
Sep 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Smart and Complex Political Thriller

CS Farrelly, an accomplished playwright, knocks it out of the park with an excellent debut novel. Written with an intelligence seldom seen in the genre, it makes the reader worry this may too damn smart to reach the audience it deserves.

This book is special.
Dec 26, 2020 rated it really liked it
The early reviewers covered the essence of the plot, and were correct in that the establishment of the characters was a little confusing. Yes, you had a good idea as to where it was going and why, but it was still an amazing read. For those of us who watched the Catholic church go through those years of trauma and cover-up, it brought back a lot of memories. Well done.
Jul 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
The Shepherd's Calculus is a political thriller novel by C. S. Farrelly. The book unfolds the events of the United States presidential election which becomes the catalyst of a conspiracy which saves the church millions in legal repayments and gives the president a significant leverage over his opponent. All while playing with the faith of the masses.

Bishop Owen Feeny is a priest who doesn't always practice what he preaches. With his eyes on the post of cardinal and a dozen sexual offenders unde
Hazel Nance
Dec 27, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition

I chose this rating because it was too confusing. I got to 29% and just wanted to stop. So I stopped reading.

Several months had passed since his return from an extended and harrowing assignment tracking UN peacekeeping operations on the Kashmiri border with Pakistan, where violent protests had erupted following the death of a local Hizbul Mujahideen military commander. The assignment had left him with what his wife, Emma, solemnly declared to be post-traumatic stress disorder. It was, in his opinion, a dubious diagnosis she’d made based on nothing more than an Internet search, and he felt those cov
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