In this collection of personal essays, Pamela Capone writes with both heart and humor. Using historical and contemporary examples--as well as stories from her own life--she writes for the soul and for the sole intention of pointing to love.
This book is about teensy-weensy firecracker love, love that, when ignited, lights up someone's dark night. It's about feet-on-the-ground, sky's-the-limit, life-changing, world-engaging, mustard-seed love that grows from a hunch, an idea, a nudging from above--and then blossoms in the willingness of a heart to act on its sometimes-wobbly faith.
Such audacious, underestimated love--like the little engine that could from the children’s book--just keeps chugging along over "impossible" hills, shrugging off the naysayers, imagining the view from the top. The difference is, this tenacity in the human heart is what turns seeming underdogs and ragamuffins into influencers and game-changers, right in our own communities, workplaces, homes . . . or wherever we go in the world.
May Pamela Capone's often-hilarious observations and always-engaging experiences put a little fuel in your tank to help you get up and over, so you can see that all things are indeed possible . . . if you believe that Love can.
I absolutely love this book. I couldn't wait to read it. Her last book, 'I punched myself in the eye' was so fun to read that I couldn't put it down. Her life lessons in love and way of writing makes me feel like I am in her head. If you have the urge to buy this book, don't fight it. This book will make your heart grow three sizes bigger. I hope I get to meet Pamela at a book signing someday to let her know how much she has changed my view on life. I read an advanced reader copy for my honest review.
“The Little Love That Could: Stories of Tenacious Love, Underdogs, and Ragamuffins” by Pamela Capone shares personal essays of small, powerful, explosive, quiet, tenacious, and engaging love. These different types of love persevere and never give up as they demonstrate that indeed love can. Throughout the book, Pamela Capone gives readers insight into her life and the lessons about love that she has learned. I savored each short chapter as a devotional or meditation. The insights helped me see practical and unique ways I can love God, myself, and others better. Pamela uses humor, Scripture and numerous television/movie references to enhance her insights, and she writes with humor and personality. I enjoyed reading this book and would recommend it to readers who are curious about love - what love is, how to receive love, and how to show love.
Not many of us take the time to stop and think about our day in any real, meaningful way, but Pamela Capone’s new book, The Little Love That Could, encourages us to do just that—to consider how small, seemingly unimportant interactions and events in our lives actually have real meaning. The book is an entertaining reminder to not only stop and smell the roses, but to stop and examine how our actions impact loved ones and strangers, and how our attitudes and way of living can and should encourage hope, promote love, and inspire others. The Little Love That Could is an excellent, inspiring book that should be required reading, especially in these divisive times.
—Libby Kirsch, Emmy award-winning reporter; author of the Stella Reynolds and Janet Black Mystery Series
The format of the book takes a little getting used to, but once you realise that the short, snappy chapters which have no discernable timeline are reflective of the way one's own musings on a theme (in this case being the theme of Love) can go from thought to thought naturally if not in a linear fashion, then it makes this book easier to grasp and read.
There are some wonderful observations which will resonate with readers but also some thoughts which go off on too much of a tangent from what the brief chapter is supposed to be about.
Overall it's a relatively easy read, which can be picked up and put down allowing the reader to get through it in bite-sized pieces.
Given that "The Little Love That Could: Stories of Tenacious Love, Underdogs, and Ragamuffins" isn't Pamela Capone's first book, it's perfectly understandable that Capone, with the exception of the very first story in the book, barely references the childhood experiences that led to her own self-perception as a "rescue" and eventually toward a life of inspirational writing and speaking.
The youngest of nine children orphaned by their biological parents, Pamela was taken in by her foster parents at age 18 months and raised in a setting that was vastly different from that which her young self had ever known. She wrote about her experiences in "The Little Girl Within: Overcoming Memories of Childhood Abuse," a book she followed up with "I Punched Myself in the Eye."
Having not read Capone's first two books but being incredibly intrigued by the description offered for "The Little Love That Could," I forked over the dough for the Kindle version, something of a rarity these days as I've been reviewing more and more books, and sat down on a quarantine Saturday in Indianapolis for an afternoon of reading.
Inspired by the children's book "The Little Engine That Could," Capone has wrapped this collection of stories around the central theme of a "little love that could" show up in her life and turn a child that had experienced early life rejection into a loving, faithful adult.
"The Little Love That Could" contains 65 stories of varying lengths, though the vast majority are in the relatively short 2-3 page range. Similar in tone to an upcoming book I'd just completed from evangelical writer Sophie Hudson, "The Little Love That Could" is a little humorous, incredibly spirited, often quite heartfelt, and filled with spiritual stories and insights.
The stories are loosely organized, somewhat cohesive thematically yet widely varying in terms of subject matter and personal impact. At times, they are firmly wrapped around a scriptural foundation and other times simply in Capone's own life experiences. Sometimes, the personal connection seems vague at best while there are other times, typically in the book's weakest stories, references to pop culture or simply personal observations.
Capone writes from a place of modest privilege having built a happy, successful life with her husband of 30+ years, though at times it adds an inconsistent tone to stories. At least every several stories, Capone seems to share about a European trip, exotic locale, or experiencing the thrills of an airline's elite status. While there's certainly nothing wrong with any of this, it just adds a weird feeling to stories that are supposed to be focused on love and "underdogs."
I also found, at times, that Capone's writing would conflict with her own stated values. For example, at one point she questions a particular public figure for exploiting a situation/person yet, only a couple essays later does that very thing in telling the story of an unrelated child with whom her daughter worked.
How was that not exploitation?
Capone also, at times, tend to defer to vague descriptions of placed and things that makes it hard to relate to her stories. For example, she shares about a trip to Italy, one of her favorite places, and a particularly difficult phone call received during one day. However, she declines to give any indication at all about the call and it ends up feeling like the literary equivalent of vague-booking.
Occasional tonal and thematic concerns aside, "The Little Love That Could" will most likely appeal to those who appreciate faith-based inspirational writing. Sometimes, you simply don't connect with a book and, quite simply, I found myself for the most part not connecting with "The Little Love That Could" in the way that I expected. With the exception of a small handful of stories, "The Little Love That Could" is a light, breezy read that I easily finished in one day and did, at times, quite enjoy including Capone's experiences with 96-year-old friend Inez and often poignant reflections on her marriage and family.
While far from a book that I disliked, "The Little Love That Could" never quite clicked for me and ultimately lacked anything compelling enough to make me want to explore Capone's earlier works. While some will certainly feel inspired by her rise from a difficult early childhood, as a literary work "The Little Love That Could" didn't help me get to know Pamela Capone and didn't inspire me enough to want to.
I loved this Little Love That Could book! This book is filled with personality and warmth, set in a conversational tone. You feel as if you are almost eaves-dropping on an inside chat between friends as they sit by the fire and hear them share something funny or interesting that happened that day.
How the author could paint a picture with words is just amazing. You felt you were right along there with her feeling your blackened feet against the hot gritty gravel in the driveway with the “chi, chi, chi” of the nearby sprinklers. Her ability to create imagery in the mind of the reader is a gift. Not just sharing stories that are amusing or interesting, but you see with the author moments of clarity and insight that help you to make a little more sense of the world. She has the unique ability to see beyond a given everyday-type of moment to flesh out something of value, a timeless principle that can show purpose and meaning.
You could feel the author’s little girl heart at times (with all it defenses and protections) giving way to an enormous heart (with all its “confliction”) and inspire you to come out of your own protections abounding in hope and courage.
Smack dab in the middle of the book are three of my favorite stories: At Least Its Not, Don’t Throw Away the Oar and Trash Day. They were set there in the middle of the book like a crescendo (or like a chiasmus - an ancient form of Hebrew poetry).
Just after those three stories comes the apropos line, “images of my most favorite underdogs and tenacious lovers” which just about sums up these wonderful vignettes…these slices of life that give us a chance to be privy to one person’s delightful perspective on our shared experience,.. even daring us to live our best life
She dares you to cast off your comfort zone and oft-predictable way of seeing the world (and the humans around us), in such a way as to add beauty and substance to our world and any myopic lens we may have picked up along the way.
I loved how she unabashedly and unapologetically points to God in this process, …He who is the Biggest Love That Could …(and Did).
I love how we have a chance to see ourselves (and the human foibles we all exhibit from time to time) with more compassion and a willingness to perhaps not take ourselves quite so seriously.
This book is a real treat. The short chapters lend themselves to a desire to start out your day (or end it) with humor and/or insight. It was a joy to read and I would recommend it highly to anyone as a gift to another (or
I received a free copy of this book via ARC program and am voluntarily leaving a review.
Pamela Capone’s “The Little Love That Could” provides readers with an honest, touching look into the lives many of us lead. There is not a single essay or situation that will leave one untouched. Beginning with her story as a ragamuffin that is taken in by her foster parents, Capone describes how she felt she would never be loved or cared for yet throughout her life she becomes a most loving, faithful, compassionate woman.
I felt like I was sitting down with a long-time friend having intimate conversations over coffee. The majority of what attracts me to this read is Capone is never judgmental and accepts individuals for who they are, while at the same time learns something more about herself and her journey. While the author interjects numerous Bible scriptures, they are not so much that one feels like she is imposing one’s faith or higher power.
The essay “On Loan” hit my heart to the core. As a mother, I have the worry gene like many of us do and to be honest, it overwhelms me at times. There is only so much we can do to help our children through life and worrying isn’t going to change many things. As the author states, “My kids are not really mine, to begin with. They are on loan.” Meaning that we are just a temporary person who loves and care for them. In the end, they will complete the job God has chosen for them and will move on to his world.
Another essay that made me reconsider how we behave around those who have lost someone is “At Least It’s Not.” Often I, like many others, am at a loss of what to say around someone who is grieving for a loss that occurs. Normally, we say “Don’t cry, it will get better,” or we choose to interrupt to move to a different topic. We want to attempt to have them think of something else for just a few minutes. Instead, we cut them off and the knees with what makes us uncomfortable. It wasn’t until a few years ago I realized I don’t always have to say something. It’s ok just to be there with a hug or touch. People tend to do the same when someone wants to apologize; we brush it off by saying, “It’s fine, no big deal.” We as humans need to let others say what they need to say and feel what they need to feel without taking charge.
Life is never easy, but through examples, the author gives us the ok to stumble, make mistakes and reexamine ourselves, after all we are only human. “The Little Love That Could” is an easy read and one that empowers readers to take our days one day at a time and live them to the fullest. Trust me when I say, once you read Pamela Capone's book, you will never the same again. I highly recommend “The Little Love That Could” to everyone: teens, seniors and both sexes. It is powerful yet warm and loving.
This book was entered in The Wishing Shelf Book Awards. This is what our readers thought: Title: The Little Love That Could Author: Pamela Capone
Star Rating: 5 Stars Number of Readers: 16 Stats Editing: 9/10 Writing Style: 10/10 Content: 9/10 Cover: 9/10 Of the 16 readers: 16 would read another book by this author. 15 thought the cover was good or excellent. 16 felt it was easy to follow. 16 would recommend this story to another reader to try. Of all the readers, 6 felt the author’s strongest skill was ‘subject knowledge’. Of all the readers, 10 felt the author’s strongest skill was ‘writing style’. 15 felt the pacing was good or excellent. 16 thought the author understood the readership and what they wanted.
Readers’ Comments ‘A truly wonderful book with a strong Christian theme. There are indeed many different sorts of love and how that love is imagined. This author offers the reader an uplifting anthology that is often funny and always kind.’ Female reader, aged 67 ‘Warm, inspirational and always enjoyable, this book is a gem. I suspect the author is very good at seeing people as is reflected in her prose.’ Female reader, aged 54 ‘A well-balanced mix of the author’s life and what she’s learnt in her life. As the title suggests, it predominantly looks at ‘love’ in all its forms, with emphasis on God and his influence on her. An inspiring book, perfect as a present for anybody who is feeling a little lost in life.’ Male reader, aged 43
To Sum It Up: ‘A refreshingly uplifting anthology written with a gold-tipped pen. A FINALIST and highly recommended.’ The Wishing Shelf Book Awards
Incredibly captivating, The Little Love That Could is filled with inspirational stories, and thought provoking and faith-filled messages written in the most unique and transparent style. Author Pamela Capone takes us on a journey through her life, giving us a front-row seat to her best memories, painful diffi- culties, and aha moments, causing fresh hope to rise within a reader’s heart. Her positive outlook on life, mixed with a sense of humor, makes each chapter easy to read and relate to in a personal way. This book will revive your heart to beat again, no matter how many of life’s challenges may have knocked you down. Allow The Little Love That Could to strengthen your soul to live fully awake and dream with eyes wide open, bigger than ever before . . . . It sure did it for me!
—Ceitci Demirkova, founder & CEO, Changing a Generation; author of the best-selling, award-winning book, Motivated by the Impossible: Recognizing Your Invisible Mentors
Amazingly, after writing I Punched Myself in the Eye, Pamela Capone still has more humorous and profound wisdom to share with the world. That’s what The Little Love That Could is for.
In this potent work, Capone starts off by sharing some intimate stories from her barefoot childhood. Drawing upon the insights gained from the senior citizens with whom she visits regularly, philo- sophical giants such as Victor Frankl, passages from the Bible, and especially her own life experience, she shares her peculiar view of the world with the intent of lifting others to a higher plane.
If you’re looking to learn from a woman who offers advice such as ‘Eat the gnocchi’ and ‘Memorize a joke’ as well as inadvertently getting a handbook on how to become a better human being, then The Little Love That Could is a must-read.
I had the opportunity to read an advanced Reader copy for my unbiased and professional opinion. Wow! I love Pamela Capone’s writing. . . . I literally laughed out loud in several of the chapters. Not just smiled and silently giggled, but a hearty, make-some- noise laugh. Those moments are coupled with moments of introspection and inspiration. I love Capone’s transformation of the term ‘stranger’ to ‘the Unmet,’ leaving the potential for a future friendship. Ideas like that are offered with insight and humor and will make us all believe that Love Can. —Vicki McCarty, indie film producer/talent manager, Covington International
The Little Love That Could provides snapshots of Pamela Capone’s life where she finds love, forgiveness, and redemption. Her ‘ragamuffin’ origin allows her to connect to the hearts of those around her, including hundreds of little Guatemalan IMA girls. Capone shows that despite our differences, there are some things that transcend language, culture, and age. Her words inspire us to see the God-given treasures that are all around us.
—Jamie Randy, president, International Medical Assistance (IMA)
I read an advanced reader copy to provide my honest review
The Little Love That Could by Pamela Capone is an amazing book of beautiful stories that are written from the heart with extraordinary love. She has a real gift for telling stories that brought out the laughter, humor, tears, and even empathy [toward] my own self. This is such a beautiful, feel-good book as Capone shares her journey of the experiences she has had with family and friendships. The Little Love That Could will make anyone feel the power of love. I received an advanced copy of the book to review and I’m providing this review freely.
The Little Love That Could is full of short snappy musings of the authors reflections on love. All kids of love! From our relationships with our friends, families, and other loved ones these glimpses into the author’s life are relatable.
While the stories do not to tie together to create a plot, they will each bring you a little glimmer of happiness and hope. I think this is something you can keep on hand and read in doses as you need them. Almost a modern Chicken Soup for the Soul.
A fantastic book! Filled with little notes of love. A variety of topics all centering around - you guessed it --love. The perfect gift for a friend, a shower present, or yourself! Plan to stop and read a few stories, then put the book aside. Come back later for more encouragement and love. Take you time and savor! Enjoy! NetGalley and provided an advanced review copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!
God smiled on Pam in her pajammies and kissed her head of blond ringlets to send her into the world to write stories to nudge us to be a little better as we laugh, cry and HOPE! I was lucky enough to read an advance reader view of this amazing book before its release and so thoroughly enjoyed it that I wanted to leave my own review here.
Pam has a special writing talent. I immensely enjoyed reading her latest book. I felt like we were sitting together having coffee and chatting. I look forward to reading any future books she will write. I also like the way she brings in scripture. Love that! I read an advanced reader copy for my honest review.
In a time full of sadness and pain, Pam Capone has given us hope and laughter...her life story is amazing and she had every reason not to choose LOVE! Reading this book made me laugh and cry. Her openness is heartfelt and I couldnt wait to finish this book! Please Pam...start the next book!
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
I flat-out loved it! Pamela Capone is an incredibly gifted writer. She draws you into her colorful world and takes you along this beautiful journey filled with stories and observations that create meaningful moments that matter. She truly touched my soul! I read an advanced reader copy for my review.