Cleansed by Fire book site Cleansed by Fire

Here are some reviews from Amazon readers.

Nothing Like a Good Cozy Mystery May 30, 2012
By Roger Bruner Format:Kindle Edition

I really enjoy cozy mysteries when they're this good. And when a writer makes a crime-solving priest as interesting to a Southern Baptist reader as Jim Callan has done, he's really accomplished something. In so many of the cozy mysteries I've read, the crime solving is pretty much the whole story. This plot is much more rounded out, though--with a number of teen activities and even an adult romance (no, not Father Frank!). At no point did I feel that the story was dragging, and that's a major accomplishment, too. I thought Jim Callan handled the Christian elements well--and in a way that would be acceptable to most Christians. Cleansed by Fire would make a great read for teens as well as adults, I believe. Maybe even for teen boys.

By Elizabeth A. Lynch
Format:Kindle Edition
I was surprised by this book. It kind of reminded me of the Father Dowling Mysteries on TV. It kept me interested all the way through. Probably the first one that I have read in a a while that was pure mystery and light hearted as well. I am not catholic but it would be nice to meet one like Father Frank. I recommend this book I finished it in a couple of days. It is a steady story and you don't feel the ending is rushed like the Cornwell's books have become. I look forward to another Father Frank Book.

By John Brantingham
Format:Kindle Edition|Amazon Verified Purchase

Writing from a priest's point of view is difficult. Most people do so badly. So often, the writer descends into cliche. Priests in literature are often either so good that they are uninteresting or so bad that they are unbelievable. A few people have written priests well.

Graham Greene wrote priests well. Then again, he wrote everything well.

Gerald Locklin wrote priests well.

And James R. Callan writes priests well in his novel Cleansed by Fire.

Father Frank is Callan's protagonist. He's a priest having to deal with the new realities of a small town. Corrupting influences are moving in and trying to destroy the peace that he's built with his parishioners. Kids are being seduced by drugs. The adults of his parish don't believe in themselves. Worst of all, someone is burning down the local Baptist churches. It's up to Father Frank to go out and stop the destruction of his small community.

You don't have to be a Catholic to like this novel because Callan's protagonist is clearly and fully written. Unlike so many badly written priests, Father Frank is a real person with real faults. He struggles with his faith and doubts.

When someone pushes him, he wants to fight, and one of the levels of tension in this well-written book is Father Frank's personal struggle to remain faithful to the principles that he loves. It isn't easy for him, and that makes the book so interesting to read. One of the themes I really get tired of is priests struggling with sexual identity. That's not Father Frank's problem. He struggles with the violence of his nature, and we see him running headlong into dangerous situations again and again only to arrive unsure of what to do.

I really enjoyed Cleansed by Fire, and I'm glad it's part of a series. I want to watch Father Frank grow as all great characters do.

Fan of Father Frank, March 29, 2013
By M. Hamilton "snowgal" (Katy, TX) - See all my reviews (REAL NAME) Amazon Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Cleansed By Fire: A Father Frank Mystery (Paperback)

Enjoyed reading this book. I wish Father Frank was a real person because I'd love to know him.
This book is not as complicated a story as many mysteries but it held my interest, especially when the author left Father Frank unconscious in his own church which was burning. I will definitely read more of this author's works.

Enjoyable Read, March 20, 2013
By Night Owl - See all my reviews This review is from: Cleansed by Fire (Father Frank Mysteries) (Kindle Edition)

The main thing I liked about this book was the way Mr. Callan portrays main character, Father Frank. I like that he's tempted to break the code of confession for the greater good. In most novels, tv programs,etc., priests aren't written that way, so that was a breath of fresh air.

Among the mystery of who dunnit, Mr. Callan also gives the reader a little romance side theme,which as a woman, I appreciated!!

If you enjoy well written cozy mysteries, this is the book for you!!

An Enviable Character, March 16, 2013
By John R. Lindermuth "J. R. Lindermuth, author ... (Coal Township PA) - See all my reviews (VINE VOICE) (REAL NAME) Amazon Verified Purchase(What's this?) This review is from: Cleansed by Fire (Father Frank Mysteries) (Kindle Edition)

A confession alerts a Catholic priest to the repetition of a crime that already has him concerned.

An arsonist is targeting churches in his community and church law prevents Father Frank DeLuca from alerting police. But that doesn't mean he can't seek other means of action--even if it puts him on a collision course with a series of dangerous characters and subject to violence.

The fires up to this point have all been at Baptist churches in his small Texas community. Still, Father Frank is ecumenical in his desire to help those who have suffered loss and dedicated in his effort to identify the perpetrator. On top of this problem, he's irked by a mysterious stranger who is approaching the town youth with questions about drugs.

Concerned for all the youth of the community, Father Frank is already busy setting up a basketball league, caring for his flock and supporting the efforts of some parishioners who have formed a teen chorus.

In many respects, Father Frank reminded me of G. K. Chesterton's Father Brown, though Callan's creation is a more modern and athletic person, likeable and even human enough to be closely tempted to fisticuffs on a couple occasions.

A cozy read with an engaging cast of characters and a few surprising plot twists along the way.

Father Frank is Top Suspense Novel, October 16, 2012
By Jory Sherman (Pittsburg, TX United States) - See all my reviews This review is from: Cleansed By Fire: A Father Frank Mystery (Paperback)

James R. Callan has written a superb mystery that is right in step with current events in the U.S. Callan's Father Frank DeLuca, a parish priest, must wade through a host of suspects to find out who is burning churches in his district. The writing will keep you on the edge of your seat until the very end. Well-written, with superbly drawn characters. This first of a series holds great promise for future novels by Mr. Callan.

Excellet Book, June 4, 2012
By Carl S. Rogers (Lakewood, Colorado United States) - See all my reviews Amazon Verified Purchase(What's this?) This review is from: Cleansed By Fire: A Father Frank Mystery (Paperback)
This book is captivating and will hold your attention. Exceptionally well written and although it is fictional there is a lot of realism. I highly recommend this book to anyone who has read any of James Callan's other books or is just looking for a darn good book to read.

Confessing I love it!, June 1, 2012
By Linda Glaz - See all my reviews (REAL NAME) Amazon Verified Purchase(What's this?) This review is from: Cleansed by Fire (Father Frank Mysteries) (Kindle Edition)

Father Frank gets a confession that sends his town into turmoil. Behind every evil, is Father Frank, saving souls and saving lives. I could not put this book down in spite of the fact I was a little caught off guard by a few bad characters who were a tad too stereotypish for me, but that didn't stop the fact that this plot-driven novel was so overwhelming and exciting. The tension between Father Frank and Officer Mike was just enough to be believable. Rarely do I have the luxury of sitting down and reading to the end, but that's exactly what I did. I found it slightly reminiscent of the Blue Bloods series on TV. It had that same feel and I was drawn in immediately. I'm anxious for the next Father Frank Mystery to come out. Mr. Callans keep writing. America's gonna love this series!

An Artful Touch to a subject too hot to handle, May 25, 2012
By Jim H. Ainsworth (Campbell, Texas United States) - See all my reviews (REAL NAME) This review is from: Cleansed By Fire: A Father Frank Mystery (Paperback)

In this, the first of Callan's Father Frank mysteries, we are introduced to a set of circumstances and characters that readers will look forward to getting to know better in future books. Father Frank is as about as far from stereotypical as a character can get. Callan does an excellent job of making us develop emotional attachments (positive and negative) to his cast of characters. And what could be more compelling than the horrific act of burning churches? The author does such an excellent job of plot development and of weaving his characters into the twists and turns that we forget Callan's presence and just let the characters and action tell the story.

And his artful weaving of ordinary church activities into the frightening plot makes one wonder if Callan was ever part of the clergy. A novel worth your time.

Great Summer Read, May 13, 2012
By Fred-Suz - See all my reviews This review is from: Cleansed By Fire: A Father Frank Mystery (Paperback)

I just finished the first Father Frank mystery "Cleansed by Fire". A wonderful book for young adults and older adults alike. Very intriguing plot that keeps you reading, wanting the satisfaction of an answer to the twists and turns presented by the talented author. How refreshing to read a book with no bad language or sexual images. Additionally, a good message for young adults: People really do care about your well being and are there to help you. Can't wait to see the next in the series.

Love a good mystery?, April 9, 2012
By S. Sehon - See all my reviews This review is from: Cleansed By Fire: A Father Frank Mystery (Paperback)

I do, and this is not just a really good mystery, but also a really well written novel. The characters are brought to life in it's words and the plot keeps you turning the pages. This is one of those books that when you have to leave it, you start planning for when you can get back to it. I was very excited when I discovered it is the first of series, and can't wait to dig into the next Father Frank mystery.

Great story, March 24, 2012
By maggie - See all my reviews This review is from: Cleansed By Fire: A Father Frank Mystery (Paperback)

I love a mystery and this is a good one! Father Frank is not only interested in his church and its members, but interested in his town and all of the people in it, no matter what church they attend.

And so, of course he must get involved when several churches are burned to the ground, for no apparent reason.

He is also involved with the teenage basketball league and is disturbed to feel that perhaps one of the boys may have information as to whom is involved, and which church might be next. And what about the mysterious man who is seen talking to the boys in the league, and immediately leaves when anyone else approaches?

Will Father Franks involvement cost him serious injury, or maybe his life?

I am looking forward to the next book in this series, and hope that it is not to long in coming!

Above and Beyond, March 22, 2012
By Patricia Gligor (Cincinnati, Ohio) - See all my reviews Amazon Verified Purchase(What's this?) This review is from: Cleansed By Fire: A Father Frank Mystery (Paperback)

Last night, I finished reading "Cleansed by Fire" by James R. Callan, the first novel in his Father Frank mystery series. The book has a suspenseful plot, an interesting cast of unique characters and a dash of romance. I highly recommend it!

Father Frank DeLuca is the priest at Prince of Peace Church in Pine Tree, Texas. He's a likeable, memorable character but he's certainly not a "typical" priest. In addition to saving souls, he goes above and beyond his priestly duties while struggling to remain true to the vows he took. He's determined to discover who is setting fires at several Baptist churches in his small town and to put a stop to it. As he meets and confronts possible suspects, he constantly places himself in danger. Can Father Frank manage to stay alive long enough to keep another church from burning down? Will he discover the identity of the arsonist? You'll have to read "Cleansed by Fire" to find out!

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