Saving Simon : how a rescue donkey taught me the meaning of compassion

From Andrea Kalinowski

Author: Jon Katz

Title: Saving Simon : how a rescue donkey taught me the meaning of compassion 

Saving Simon : how a rescue donkey taught me the meaning of compassion by Jon Katz was a mostly uplifting read. I say mostly because when you, the reader, first start the book, the fate of the donkey seems dire indeed. Simon is a “rescue” donkey meaning a concerned individual spotted Simon in a risky living situation and started the process of liberating him from that situation. Simon’s rescuers found the donkey in a fenced area too small for him and his care had been severely neglected. Jon Katz owned a “gentleman” farm, a “gentleman” farm in that farming is not the owner’s main occupation, fiction and nonfiction writing are. Jon agreed to “rescue” the donkey and provide him with a safe living environment. For the first few months, this “rescue” operation required multiple applications of ointments and salves and lots of TLC. In the course of rescuing Simon, Jon began to define and redefine, for himself, the meaning of mercy and compassion. He poses a question to himself and essentially to all of mankind regarding mercy and compassion. The question that he seeks to answer is – does only the blameless individual(s) deserve compassion? This book encouraged me to look at how I define mercy and compassion and to whom I award those gifts. Saving Simon was a most thought-provoking read.

Pearl in the Sand : a novel

From Ginny Pisciotta
author: Afshar, Tessa
Pearl in the Sand : a novel
This gripping novel is faithful to the biblical account while elaborating on the story of Rahab, a Canaanite prostitute in Jericho who aided the Hebrew spies, joined the Israelites, and went on to become the mother of Boaz (the husband of Ruth) and the great grandmother of King David. This book has it all – action, romance and deep spiritual insight.  My one gripe would be that at times you wished it didn’t take so long for Rahab and Salmone to understand each other (even after they married).

Shape of Mercy

From Ginny Pisciotta
author: Meissner, Susan
The shape of mercy : a novel

College student Lauren Durough takes a part-time job with an elderly retired librarian.  Her job is to transcribe the journal entries of her employer’s ancestor, Mercy Hayworth, a victim of the Salem witch trials.  She is really drawn to the young girl who lived and died over 400 years ago.  Lauren learns a lot about life, love and mercy. The author goes back and forth between the past and present weaving a compelling story of both girls.  You will not want to put this book down.