When David Anderton, an English priest, takes over a Scottish parish, not everyone is ready to accept him. He makes friends with two local youths, Mark and Lisa, and clashes with a world he can barely understand. The town seems to grow darker each night. Fate comes calling, and before the summer is out, David's quiet life is the focus of public hysteria.
Father David looks back on a Lancashire childhood, on a lost father, and on Ampleforth, a grand Catholic school for boys. He recalls Oxford in the 1960s, in the heat of student revolt, and a choice he made in the orange groves of Rome. BE NEAR ME is a story of art and politics, a tale of love and faith. Trapped in class hatreds, threatened by personal flaw, Father David begins to discover what happened to the ideals of his generation.
BE NEAR ME, Andrew O'Hagan's third novel, possesses a depth of feeling and a literary artistry that render it the author's masterpiece.