Monday 8 June 2020

Our Lady's Wardrobe - Anthony DeStefano and Juliana Kolesova

Our Lady's Wardrobe
Anthony DeStefano
Juliana Kolesova (Illustrator)
Sophia Institute Press
ISBN 9781622826261

I have mixed feelings about this volume. Both from the content and how the eBook is made. I love the idea. And think it could have been an amazing volume. As it is I am a little disappointed and underwhelmed. First the technical issues. The eBook displays well on a large computer scree. But does not display well on a tablet or phone. Each 2-page spread of the physical book is a single image in the eBook. That on smaller devices it is super squished, misshapen, and barely legible. So, if you are going to give this book a try stick to the physical copy.

Second, the theology if pretty fuzzy. Mary standing in a mansion deciding what to wear for an appearance back on earth … more than a little much. All but one of the Mary’s appear to have very bright blue eyes and are very Caucasian in complexion. Even for famous appearances where we have some description of her, or Guadalupe where there is a specific image. And for the Appearance at Knock there are only the two other human figures not the lamb, or altar. The artist’s either did not really care or the research was very weak. Some of the images are stunning. And if more thought and care had gone into presenting a more diverse image of Mary or more accurate presentations the book would have been wonderful. For example when our lady of Nazareth visits Elizabeth

“So visiting her cousin’s house
the handmaid of the Lord
could only wear a handmade dress,
Tied with a simple cord.”

All clothes at that time would have been handmade. And for most people simple functional clothes.

The images in the volume are:
Our Lady of Nazareth
Our Lady of Mount Carmel
Our Lady of Guadalupe
Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal
Our Lady of Knock
Our Lady of Lourdes
Our Lady of Fatima
Our Lady Queen of Angels

“No matter what Our Lady does and where Our Lady goes,
she always takes the time to wear the most amazing clothes.
Her clothes are proof that Heaven is a truly wondrous place –
A land of beauty, life and love and joy and truth and grace.”

I think her appearances have a much more important message that what she choose to wear. The book does conclude on a good note:

“Three things you can do for Jesus and His Mother!

If you wear a scapular
And Mary’s medal too,
And pray the Rosary every day,
God’s grace is promised to you.”

I have read this book twice now. First by myself, and again with my youngest daughter. All of my children collect prayer cards, and She ask why all the Mary’s looked the same. She appreciated the book much more than I did. As stated earlier this book is ok, but it could have been great. I love the concept just not the execution. For younger children it might be a good introduction. And the illustrations are stunning. I was just looking for something more from the title and description of the book.

Note: This book is part of a series of reviews: 2020 Catholic Reading Plan!

No comments: