Please join Carolyn Astfalk and Catholic Mom for An Open Book.
Here are the books I’ve been reading and/or working on.
Amazon Synopsis: This book contains 150 informative and challenging quotations of countless spiritual writers from across the centuries. Just commit to spending five minutes each day (preferably in the morning) reading, meditating, and pondering just one of those quotations. What is God trying to tell you? How will you respond? If you get stuck, you will find some helpful questions after each quotation to steer you in the right direction.
Put your thinking cap on and let God speak silently to your heart.
I can assure you, in God’s perfect timing, you will recognize that five minutes will not be enough for your daily conversation with Him. You will find a way to be with Him for a more extended period of time.
My review: Pondering Tidbits of Truth Volume 6 is a beautiful collection of challenging quotes from many spiritual writers. This is an ideal book to take to Adoration, on retreat, or just to have on hand for meditation/prayer time at home. It will help anyone who wants to grow in their relationship with God. Highly recommend! 5/5.
Amazon Synopsis: An indispensable prayer companion for those devoted to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and for those who want to know more about His loving Heart. This treasury of prayers explains the Nine First Friday Devotion and offers practical and relevant ways to offer reparation to Jesus in our troubled and faithless times.
My review: This is a beautiful little book that teaches and guides those who are interested in offering reparation during our troubled times. Highly recommend. 5/5.
Amazon Synopsis: Come My Beloved: Inspiring Stories of Catholic Courtship is a celebration of faith and enduring love. This compilation includes 12 courtship/dating stories that will inspire, captivate and entertain readers. Included are the following stories: A widow with eight children meets a widower with six children; a woman prays to God for a husband and years later, finds herself falling in love with a seminarian; a man asks his live-in girlfriend “What if we stopped having sex?” and is greeted with tears of joy; an atheist falls in love with her Catholic Prince Charming; a couple meets through a Christian introduction service. What these couples have in common is a deep faith in God and faithfulness to the Catholic Church’s teachings.
My review: This was an absolute labor of love that is now eleven years old. Come My Beloved is only 9.99 USD for paperback and .99 for Kindle. Ideal for couples preparing for marriage and anyone who wants to read true stories of real couples meeting and marrying.
Amazon Synopsis: In this luminous memoir, a true American icon looks back on his celebrated life and career. His body of work is arguably the most morally significant in cinematic history, and the power and influence of that work are indicative of the character of the man behind the many storied roles. Sidney Poitier here explores these elements of character and personal values to take his own measure—as a man, as a husband and a father, and as an actor.
Poitier credits his parents and his childhood on tiny Cat Island in the Bahamas for equipping him with the unflinching sense of right and wrong and of self-worth that he has never surrendered and that have dramatically shaped his world. “In the kind of place where I grew up,” recalls Poitier, “what’s coming at you is the sound of the sea and the smell of the wind and momma’s voice and the voice of your dad and the craziness of your brothers and sisters…and that’s it.” Without television, radio, and material distractions to obscure what matters most, he could enjoy the simple things, endure the long commitments, and find true meaning in his life.
Poitier was uncompromising as he pursued a personal and public life that would honor his upbringing and the invaluable legacy of his parents. Just a few years after his introduction to indoor plumbing and the automobile, Poitier broke racial barrier after racial barrier to launch a pioneering acting career. Committed to the notion that what one does for a living articulates to who one is, Poitier played only forceful and affecting characters who said something positive, useful, and lasting about the human condition.
Here is Poitier’s own introspective look at what has informed his performances and his life. Poitier explores the nature of sacrifice and commitment, price and humility, rage and forgiveness, and paying the price for artistic integrity. What emerges is a picture of a man in the face of limits—his own and the world’s. A triumph of the spirit, The Measure of a Man captures the essential Poitier.
My review: I brought this out to read again after Poitier’s passing last month, and I can’t recommend this book highly enough. He was an outstanding actor, but also an outstanding human being. 5/5.
Amazon Synopsis: It’s 1931 in Hollywood, and Minerva Sinclaire is on the run for a murder she didn’t commit.
As the Great Depression hits the Midwest, Minerva Sinclaire runs away to Hollywood, determined to make it big and save the family farm. But beauty and moxie don’t pay the bills in Tinseltown, and she’s caught in a downward spiral of poverty, desperation, and compromise. Finally, she’s about to sign with a major studio and make up for it all. Instead, she wakes up next to a dead film star and is on the run for a murder she didn’t commit.
Only two unwilling men―Oscar, a Mexican gardener in danger of deportation, and Max, a too-handsome agent battling his own demons―can help Mina escape corrupt police on the take and the studio big shots trying to frame her. But even her quick thinking and grit can’t protect her from herself. Alone, penniless, and carrying a shameful secret, Mina faces the consequences of the heartbreaking choices that brought her to ruin . . . and just might bring her back to where she belongs.
My review: This was a compelling, enjoyable read. The writing is crisp and polished and the story and characters believable. Highly recommend! 5/5.