The Book on My Lap: Holy Troublemakers & Unconventional Saints

The Book on My Lap:
Holy Troublemakers & Unconventional Saints by Daneen Akers

This is not a children’s book. This is a book for anyone looking for examples of real life, imperfect people engaged in relationship with the Holy. Holy Troublemakers & Unconventional Saints by Daneen Akers is a book filled with 36 examples of just these kinds of people. Their relationship with the Holy has led them to live an embodiment of love in the face of danger, judgement, and exclusion so that others may know safety, reconciliation, and inclusion.

picture of bayard rustin

The unconventional lives lifted up in over 200 pages range from around the world, through a variety of religions, and the 17th century into the 21st, to show us the work of holiness is not held to one side of the map, religion, or era. Everything about this book invites the reader’s participation and engagement. These are thick, weighted pages meant for holding and turning. They are filled with vibrant colors, diverse and emotive illustrations from a variety of artists to draw non-readers and readers alike into the stories they hold. The short biographies focus on how the lives of these holy troublemakers were transformed to be bearers of the Holy to the world. They end with a question probing each reader to action within their own context. If you haven’t noticed yet, everything about this book is intentional – from the thoughtful preface and notes at the beginning of the book to the glossary of terms and acknowledgements at the end. Some of the names of these holy troublemakers you may already know and some you may not, but all will serve to offer a new perspective in what makes a life holy. You will learn. You will grow. You will be inspired.

picture of maryam molkara

Holy Troublemakers & Unconventional Saints is not only worth purchasing for yourself, it also makes a beautiful gift for family and friends of all ages. This gift will offer insight and inspiration for all who wish to know, celebrate, and engage in the activity of the Holy in the world. As a youth and family minister, I hope to feature the names highlighted in this book with every age group that I work with. Our children and youth need examples like these to encourage them as they grow in their gifts, understanding of their place in the world, and discernment of how they will engage the Holy in the world. It is always beautiful to see them step into the knowledge that they can change the world simply by being exactly who they were created to be. A second volume is currently in the works and I know I will be quick to purchase a copy. Please do yourself a favor by visiting the website to learn more about this project and follow their facebook page for news about the series, further resources, and ideas for ways that you might engage with the Holy each day.


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received Holy Troublemakers & Unconventional Saints free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

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