Review by: MandyApgar
For the love of all that is holy, forget the Yours, Mine and Ours remake. This book is closer to the original, Lucille Ball version, which Ms. Ball gained the rights to after hearing of and becoming a friend to the Beardsleys. When Helen North, 32, suddenly becomes a navy widow she relocates her family of 8 to California to be closer to her family. A very devout Catholic whose faith is poured into the book, she immediately enrolls her children in a parish school run by a "cracker jack" Mother Superior - a no nonsense lady who finds room for all Helen's kids after hearing her story and finding similarities in that of her brother. Frank Beardsley's wife died suddenly, leaving him with 10 kids, and Helen herself was so moved she sent the man a copy of a special prayer that helped her. Touched, Frank began corresponding with her and the two discovered multiple eerie coincidences in their lives to the point that they became convinced it was God's will that they marry and unite their families. And so, in 1961, they did. (And unlike the film, the kids were all overjoyed with it.) Soon bearing a son, Joseph John (and later a daughter), Helen and Frank had an extremely happy life together that was touched by adopting each other's children and dealing with the celebrity that their family brought. They were the Duggars of their time, except actually competent, and the book is truly a joy for not only their shared faith, but how they made such a happy life together.