My rating = 4 stars
I am so happy I have successfully completed my first assignment for Read Your Own Library Challenge. Blessings ended up being a good book to start with. It was a fairly quick read, and it had a good variety of characters, almost all of whom I could empathize with.
Blessings tells the story of Lydia Blessings, an old woman who lives by herself in a large house with her namesake. She has a new gardener/handyman named Skip who lives in an apartment above the garage, and a cantankerous maid named Nadine. One night Skip finds a newborn baby in a box lying on his doorstep. At first he tries to hide her from everyone, but eventually everyone at Blessings knows about the baby. Soon they all begin to see their own lives transformed by the influence of this tiny, innocent creature. Lydia especially finds her own heart softening, reliving past memories of her own childhood, as well as her daughter's childhood.
The main message I found running through the book is no one is an island. We all must have interaction with other human beings in order to survive. Indeed, if we truly want to thrive, the only way to do this is to cultivate meaningful relationships with others. Faith, the baby left on Skip's doorstep, is the physical embodiment of this message. She literally won't survive unless Skip takes care of her. Lydia is the emotional embodiment of the message. She seems to be a recluse, hiding in her house, hardly daring to even go outside. And yet, she will peek through her windows with binoculars to watch what goes on outside. She needs social interaction, but denies herself of it. But as the story progresses, Lydia opens herself up bit by bit to her friends and family, and finds healing for her own heart.