I’m a sucker for those “spend a year doing a certain thing” kind of books. In recent years, I’ve read Julie & Julia, one where a woman decides to take every shred of advice dished out by Oprah Winfrey for an entire year, and two cookbooks written by someone who used her slow cooker every day for a year–among others.
Kind of makes me wish that I had something I was willing to do for a whole year that was interesting enough to get a book deal out of it.
Heather King’s book Shirt of Flame describes a year spent reading and discovering the life of St. Therese of Lisieux.
I’m only halfway through this book, and I am SO hooked. And this is a saint to whom I don’t take easily. A priest once described her in a homily as “immature, fussy, and a bit of a drama queen” and I’m inclined to agree. I read her autobiography as a teenager, and I think it appealed to me more then than it does now that I’m fortymumble years old and most of my idealism has melted away amid the cares and worries and chores of taking care of my husband and family.
I don’t ordinarily recommend a book I haven’t even finished, but King’s chronicle of her own spiritual journey as well as Therese’s is an absolutely compelling read. Each chapter ends with a prayer, and so far I’ve wanted to bookmark almost all of them.
Unfortunately, I can’t remember where I first heard about this book, so I can’t properly thank the person who told me about it. I figured, instead, that I’d pay it forward by recommending it here. Don’t miss this book. It’s not big, it’s not complicated, and it really is worth it.