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Friday, November 1, 2013

All Saint's Day: Books About Saints

It's All Saints Day, s today we're looking at books about saints and religion in general. (Today's annotations are from WorldCat)

    

The Possibilities of Sainthood by Donna Freitas. While regularly petitioning the Vatican to make her the first living saint, fifteen-year-old Antonia Labella prays to assorted patron saints for everything from help with preparing the family's fig trees for a Rhode Island winter to getting her first kiss from the right boy.

Precious Blood by Tonya Hurley. What if martyrs and saints lived among us? And what if you were told you were one of them? Meet Agnes, Cecilia, and Lucy. Three lost girls, each searching for something. But what they find is Beyond Belief. This is the first in a planned trilogy.

When We Were Saints by Han Nolan. Inspired by his grandfather's last words and guided by a girl who believes they are saints, fourteen-year-old Archie sets out on a spiritual quest that takes him from southern Appalachia to the Cloisters Museum in New York City.

    

The Road to Damietta by SCott O'Dell. Deeply attached to the charming and carefree Francis Bernardone, Cecilia, a young noblewoman of Assisi, watches as he turns from his life of wealth and privilege, takes vows of poverty, and devotes himself to serving God by helping all those around him.

Song of the Magdalene by Donna Jo Napoli. Tells the story of Miriam, a young girl being raised by her widowed father in ancient Israel, who grows up to be Mary Magdalene.

Catherine, Called Birdy The thirteen-year-old daughter of an English country knight keeps a journal in which she records the events of her life, particularly her longing for adventures beyond the usual role of women and her efforts to avoid being married off. (Editors note: Lots of saintly commentary in this one. A bit young, but still a favorite.)

    

Boxers and Saints by Gene Luen Yang. In China in 1898 bands of foreign missionaries and soldiers roam the countryside, bullying and robbing Chinese peasants. Little Bao has had enough: harnessing the powers of ancient Chinese gods, he recruits an army of Boxers--commoners trained in kung fu who fight to free China from "foreign devils. / China, 1898. An unwanted and unwelcome fourth daughter, Four-Girl isn't even given a proper name by her family when she's born. She finally finds friendship-- and a name, Vibiana -- in the most unlikely of places: Christianity. But China is a dangerous place for Christians. The Boxer Rebellion is in full swing, and bands of young men roam the countryside, murdering Westerners and Chinese Christians alike. Torn between her nation and her Christian friends, Vibiana will have to decide where her true loyalties lie-- and whether she is willing to die for her faith.

The Unlikely Disciple: A Sinner's Semester at America's Holiest University by Kevin Roose. Recounts the author's semester investigating Liberty University, the late Jerry Falwell's fundamentalist evangelical training college, describing how he and his classmates were instructed in the ways of strict biblical literalism.

Godless by Pete Hautman. When sixteen-year-old Jason Bock and his friends create their own religion to worship the town's water tower, what started out as a joke begins to take on a power of its own.

What would you add to the list?

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