Catherine is sweet, caring, adventurous, vivacious, smart and fun, but she is brokenhearted because she didn’t get the part in the school play she auditioned for. So begins “Empty Shoes,” the new children’s book that marks Alderson native and educator Denise LaRosa’s debut as an author.
Inspired by her two young daughters playing dress-up with her shoes, LaRosa said, “Right as I was about to tell them to come clean up, I took a minute to really observe and take in what I was seeing. At that moment, the phrase ‘empty shoes’ came to me. I instantly ran upstairs and began writing ideas in my journal.
“As the baby of my family, I can totally relate to my youngest child. As the baby, we are always trying to keep up with our older siblings. We feel the need to be louder and do more just to get attention,” said LaRosa.
“I wanted to write a book that encourages young people to embrace who they are and realize that they aren’t meant to be anyone else, but the special person they were designed to be.”
One of the reasons she loves children’s books is because of the ability to teach invaluable life lessons through stories. “Empty Shoes” will help parents guide their children towards obtaining and maintaining a healthy self-esteem, said LaRosa, who is also the founder, host and CEO of Mom Talk with Denise N. LaRosa, LLC, a multimedia platform designed to motivate and inspire, inform mothers along their journey.
Continuing the story, the disappointed Catherine finds an escape by trying on shoes, and is pleasantly surprised to realize a valuable life lesson in her “sole.”
While hearing about a service project at her school, LaRosa discovered Soles4Souls. “I had already written the book and it made perfect sense to partner with them,” she said. “So for every book I sell, I am donating $1 to Soles4Souls.”
Soles4Souls is a four-star Charity Navigator organization that is helping people all over the world. $1 donated to Soles4Souls will supply a person in need with a pair of shoes “It was very important to me that I have a giving back component to my children’s books,” said LaRosa
“Empty Shoes” is illustrated by Nicholas Manning and sells for $9.99. It is available at Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble and momtalkdenise.com.