Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Each Little Bird That Sings

Each Little Bird That Sings
Deborah Wiles
5 Stars

A dear friend sent me this book when I had my baby a few months ago. She said that she loved this book - along with all other books by Deborah Wiles, and that when I got time she knew I would enjoy it too. I finally got to it and she was so right, I loved it!

Comfort Snowberger is ten years old and her family owns the town funeral home, she attends each and every funeral, so she thinks she knows everything there is to know about death. The story is a pre-teen book (9-12 year olds) and full of ten year old wit and wisdom. I loved it and laughed out loud at parts!

The plot of the story revolves around the funeral of Comforts Great-great-aunt Florentine. Comfort is asked to help with her younger and very annoying cousin Peach all while she is having trouble with her best friend Declaration.

The book takes a turn at the very end and Comfort learns a lesson on what is really important to her, who she is and her family. I believe one of my favorite parts of the entire book is the passage below. In a world like we live in now - this turned into a great message for pre-teens, or any age, to read.

"You did the right thing even when, somewhere deep inside you, you didn't want to. Because you knew, somewhere even deeper, that it was the right thing to do."

Sunday, April 26, 2009

That's Faith

That's Faith
Timothy Carver
5 Stars

The book, That's Faith was developed from a question asked by a youth about how one could measure faith. Brother Carver, a seminary teacher, developed a 10 part lesson for his class, which he then shared with many other classes, at firesides, and now a book.

The ten topics discussed in the book include: honesty, prayer, scripture study, media, music, family, friends, dating, modesty, chastity, sabbath, tithing, priesthood, missions, service and the word of wisdom. Each chapter is only a few short pages long, they all begin with a quote, or scripture, some sort of analogy discussing the topic and then the author shares a personal story about each topic. The final page in each chapter consists of a short "worksheet" where a few questions are asked and readers can rate their faith with a score of 0-10 (10 being highest). There is also a goal listed at the end of each section that readers can think about and work on.

I really enjoyed the analogies at the beginning of the chapters and a few of the short stories. My favorite was about a lesson on modesty that one of the author's friends shared with the young women in her ward. She had brought fresh doughnuts on fast Sunday, all the girls could see and smell but not taste, because of their fasting. The object lesson showed the young women how dressing immodesty can tempt young men.

I thought this book was really though provoking and really appropriate for it's teen-age audience. It was the right length, and touched on very important doctrine without going over the heads of teenagers or losing their attention. I have both a niece and nephew graduating from high school this year and think this would be a great gift to give to them. I found many aspects of my life where I can work on improving my faith. Because of the length I can read this book in just one afternoon, so I look forward to reading and rereading this book again in the future.