The weather is cooling and fall leaves float in the breeze. The coming of fall signals a time for togetherness and compassion. To help you celebrate love, we’ve compiled a list of books focusing not on romance, but on life-changing love.
Katie’s relentless love for her God and others leads her to a life of service in Uganda. At just eighteen years old, Katie foregoes her parents’ college plans and pursues a mission trip to Africa. Katie’s mission trip turns into a lifetime commitment as Katie decides to permanently move to Uganda and adopt fourteen children. In her premier novel, Katie details her life as she takes care of her children and launches Amazima Ministries in order to provide orphans with school, meals and care. Katie’s love story with Uganda is truly inspirational.
Lily Owens and her stand in mother, Rosaleen, seek refuge in the home of the beekeeping “calendar sisters” after an altercation with a trio of violent racist. Lily joins Rosaleen in order to escape from her abusive father and haunting memories of her mother’s death. The two are quickly immersed in the world of beekeeping. Slowly, they discover the truth surrounding the death of Lily’s mother and learn how to love themselves.
Mahtob is the daughter from the novel and movie, Not Without My Daughter. She tells the story of her captivity in Iran from her perspective and continues her story to the present day. My Name is Mahtob is the story of a mother who loves her daughter too much to leave her behind and too much to teach her to hate. Because her mother takes special care to keep Mahtob immersed in Iranian culture, Mahtob is able to come to love her father as the man who will forever be a part of her. Through this love, she is able to find forgiveness and peace.
“With love, with love, with love” is the refrain of Niequist’s follow up to Bittersweet and Cold Tangerines. Niequist writes of that deep abiding love we often share around a hearty meal. Bread and Wine is a collection of essays about the love-filled moments in Niequist’s life, including travels around Europe, Sunday afternoons with her family, moving into her own home and her pregnancy. Each essay is followed by a recipe, like blueberry crisp or mango chicken curry, that she felt captured that moment for her. Niequist reminds us to focus not on counting down minutes, but on cherishing moments that take our breath away.
Noble heartbreakingly captures the beauty of mother-daughter love in Things I Want my Daughters to Know. The novel opens at the funeral of Barbara, the mother of four daughters. After being fatally diagnosed with cancer, Barbara wrote a series of letters for each of her daughters to be read after her death. In a beautiful way, Barbara is able to help her daughters heal and move on with their lives, even though she can no longer be physically present.
Walk to Beautiful is the true story of Jimmy Wayne’s life. Jimmy spent time in and out of the foster care system, and eventually came to meet Bea and Russell, an older couple who took him under their wings. Their love, coupled with the love and energy of his guidance counselor, is what motivates Jimmy to finish school and pour himself into his music. After reaching the pinnacle of his country music career, Jimmy passes on their love by walking halfway across America in order to raise awareness and support for foster children.
Divine Secrets is a classic example of the power of a sisterhood. Siddalee‘s mother sends her old scrapbook to Siddalee after she attacks her mother’s parenting ability in a national newspaper. Through her mother’s scrapbook, Siddalee discovers the stories of the women who have been her mother’s lifelong friends, the members of the “Ya-Yas”. Each Ya-Ya comes to life, and Siddalee is able to piece together their personalities, flaws and life events. The scrapbook allows Siddalee to learn life lessons as well as reach the point of forgiving her mother for past transgressions.