In other words, a review of The Mystery of the Rosary: Marian Devotion and the Reinvention of Catholicism by Nathan D. Mitchell appears in the 9/1/09 issue of Library Journal:
In this truly remarkable work, from both scholarly and practical perspectives, Mitchell (theology, Univ. of Notre Dame; Real Presence: The Work of Eucarist) clearly articulates the central role of a unique devotion in the life of the Roman Catholic Church. The rosary was first introduced between the 14th and 15th centuries and has remained virtually unchanged, through enormous changes in ecclesial and world cultures. It has steadfastly retained its dominant place as a favorite form of Christian imaginative prayer, surviving such turbulent times as the Reformation, the Council of Trent, and even Vatican II. Mitchell explores how this adaptable and innovative prayer form is accessible to great theologians and the illiterate, both seeking to more fully identify themselves in the divine life of Jesus and Mary. In providing a solid historical foundation, Mitchell also shows how art, liturgy, and ritual have influenced and been influenced by this prayer over the past five centuries. VERDICT Well written, with extensive notes and a helpful index, this should be read by students of Christian theology and the history of Catholic devotion.—John-Leonard Berg, Univ. of Wisconsin-Platteville Lib.