Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Book Review: Olivia and the Little Way

I just had the privilege of reading, for review, a lovely book titled Olivia and the Little Way by Nancy Carabio Belanger. It is a beautiful story, and even though it is written for children ages 8-13, I found it very engaging... Once I started reading, I had a hard time putting it down!

This story is about a ten-year-old girl, Olivia Thomas, who is having a hard time fitting in with the kids at her new school, St. Michael's. Her devout grandmother (who reminded me so much of my own grandmother who passed away when I was 13), introduces Olivia to St. Thérèse of Lisieux and her "Little Way."

Throughout the book, Olivia develops a special devotion to St. Thérèse, who is constantly inspiring her towards holiness, and ends up becoming her best friend, despite the fact that St. Thérèse is taking so long to send Olivia a rose! (I found that so interesting since I had recently blogged about the same thing, "Love's Delay.")

I love how the author begins each chapter with beautiful quotes from St. Thérèse, and has woven so much information about this great saint into Olivia and the Little Way. She does an excellent job of encouraging readers, both young and old, to grow in holiness through Olivia's example. At times I felt as though St. Therese was speaking directly to me through some of Olivia's trials...

While reading this book, I was particularly inspired to learn more about the St. Thérèse Chaplet. (Why was I not surprised when, just after finishing the book, I logged into Google Reader, and the first unread post I clicked on directed me to Kimberlee's new items, at Bead's of Mercy, where I found a beautiful "Shower of Roses" St. Thérèse Chaplet.)

As soon as my children are just a bit older, I'll be reading this book to them. I also think it would be great to read and discuss, a chapter at a time, at our Little Flower Meetings! (Nancy was kind enough to include discussion questions with the copy she sent me!!!)

If you'd like, you can visit the website and read a few excerpts of Olivia and the Little Way. You can also order a copy directly from Nancy, on the website, as well as from many online sources including: Amazon, Sacred Heart Books and Gifts, and the Catholic Company.

O Little Thérèse of the Child Jesus, please pick for me a rose from the heavenly gardens and send it to me as a message of love. O Little Flower of Jesus, ask God today to grant the favors I now place with confidence in your hands …(Mention specific requests)... St. Thérèse, help me to always believe as you did, in God’s great love for me, so that I might imitate your “Little Way” each day. Amen.

St. Thérèse ~ Pray for Us!

7 comments:

  1. sounds like a great book. . . i might have to get this one!
    r

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  2. Thanks for the review Jessica! Sounds like a good one.

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  3. That sounds great! I'm adding it to my Amazon wish list for my DD.

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  4. Jessica, I so appreciate your kind words and am thrilled that you enjoyed the book so much! The Little Flower was my inspiration and held my hand throughout the whole writing process. God bless!

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  5. Thanks for the info!!! Beautiful prayer at the end.

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  6. Beautiful review, I am looking forward to reading this one myself!

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  7. Thank you for that heartwarming birthday video for our Pope. Love it!

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