A Great Catholic Kids Book: Seven Lonely Places, Seven Warm Places

This isn’t a regular feature here, but really should be: great Catholic books for kids.  I am especially interested in books that are great to read aloud.

Here’s a must-have.  I’m recommending this not just as a one-time read, but a book to add to your library and read often.  It’s Seven Lonely Places, Seven Warm Places: The Vices and Virtues for Children by April Bolton, illustrated by Brent Beck.  It was first published in 2003 by St. Anthony Messenger Press (now known as Franciscan Media).

My own children are generally great judges of what makes a good read-aloud, as we have done so much of it over the years, and they have always loved this book.  But I knew Seven Lonely Places, Seven Warm Places was a real winner when I read it to six different grades at our children’s Catholic grade school.  Many of those kids fidget, or will tell me or show me flat out, when a book does not interest them.  All of the grades–from K through 5th grade–sat in rapt attention during the reading of this book.  And the comments! Oh the comments! The discussions we had about this book, the illustrations, the message.  Especially from kindergarteners.

I strongly urge you to have this book on hand, read it to your kids, and sit back and wait for some amazing discussions about virtues.  Here’s a link to the publisher’s website for the book, and I’m sure it’s available at various Catholic retailers.

One thought on “A Great Catholic Kids Book: Seven Lonely Places, Seven Warm Places”

  1. This is an absolutely wonderful book! It takes virtues and vices seriously in a return to the teaching of classical Christianity. “Virtue” may seem like a Victorian expression and so I suggest seeking “virtue” as a “human competency” to use a modern expression to revive a classical one. Risk in the book: each virtue or vice is presented in just a sentence or two so you want to see more. Huge benefits of the book: 1/ it shows how the virtues hang together in a flourishing human life, 2/ the author shows virtue within human relationality, hence, “the warm places.” i’ve used the book with adult groups as well; it’s a great introduction to a dynamic presentation of the drama of human virtues and vices.

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