Mr. Blue, a Catholic novella, by Myles Connolly, is a very unique work of fiction and one that I thoroughly found pleasure in, because it portrays the adherence of faith and doctrine not as an obligation that bit-by-bit brings about mental burdensome affliction, but rather, it is presented as an exciting chllange that goes against the current social and political tide of what popular culture deems to be in vogue or the right way. It is a short work of nervy fiction that not only goes against the flow of what is thought to be acceptable in an age of thoughtless go-and-get-it modernism, but it addresses the core of ourselves and the very small universe which we temporarily occupy. Through Mr. Blue's religious unearthing of the one-and-only ultimate truth-Holy Church-a new freedom is thus discovered and hence, fully embraced, which in turn redefines life and living-with all its tumultuous struggles and assorted agonies, as something mysteriously beautiful and special. Mr. Blue was written in 1928, three years after F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote the incomparable literary classic, The Great Gatsby. And the paralles, especially in characterization, between the two works are indeed quite amazing, and yet, the novella Mr. Blue, never received the full global attention that The Great Gatsby eventually did. It remained in the shadows, like a relic, whose message was deemed only for an antiquated bygone period. Perhaps it was so, because it conveyed a message that no one wanted to hear or were too afraid to live out. For gluttony and self-indulgence, if allowed to happen, can indeed destroy the God-given gifts of character, ethics and religious and moral conviction, et cetera, et cetera. In Connolly's novel, Mr. Blue is an aberration, an anomaly for the bulk of those who bear witness to what he utters and lives out: goodness, sacrifices, an uncompromising faith, the gem of suffering and full understanding that there is one who knows, one who went before all of us. And Mr. Blue is blatant in his expression of that fact, that Jesus the Christ: "...humanized infinitude...When God became man, he made you and me and the rest of us pretty important people. He not only redemmed us, he saved us from the terrible burden of infinity." Pg. 30. Perhaps the greatest example of living out the religious life as a lay person was the very author himself-Myles Connolly-a former Hollywood screenwriter who never deviated from the gem of Truth within himself. In a way, he held up the mirror to ourselves and showed us that indeed, we, all humanity, in a compliance to that joyful and painful Truth, have a little of Mr. Blue in us, too; we're just not aware of it yet.