Monday, March 3, 2014

Book Review: "Growing up Dugger: All About Relationships" by Jill, Jinger, Jessa, and Jana Duggar

Photo credit: NetGalley


Growing Up Duggar: It's All About Relationships (Howard Books) is incite given by the four oldest girls; Jana, Jill, Jessa, and Jinger, of TLC's infamous family of their hit show 19 Kids and Couting.  Without an open mind I think many people won't like this book.  They'll open the cover expecting just stories, but if you have ever seen the show you know the basis of the Duggar's lifestyle and that's what you need to expect going into this book.  It is an interesting read whether or not you agree with their lifestyle and beliefs.  I have the same basic beliefs as they do, however when it comes to some technical points there are many differences, and that's completely okay.  It seems to mostly be written in a conjoined voice, and they specify when one of them is single handedly telling a story.  The book is as it says "All About Relationships" and each chapter is about a different kind of relationship.  It starts with yourself, ends with the world, and covers everything in between.

I enjoyed reading this, it's quick and insightful.  I too am a Christian, and I take the Bible literally.  There are some standards they follow that even I was like wow really.  It's not a bad thing, and they aren't condemning to others who don't feel led the same, it's just that going into reading this you have to understand there will most likely be lifestyle differences and not let that get in the way of the general message.  I really cannot stress that enough.  You learn a lot about what life was like growing up and how they were raised.  As you can imagine, with 19 kids, things had to be structured.  There seems to be a game plan for everything.  I was taking notes.  I don't plan on one day having 19 kids,  I imagine my family will be much smaller than that, but there are a lot of "strategies" they used that I was wowed by.  These "training" measures are ones I want to use on MYSELF.  Even if you don't have children, there is solid wisdom in this book that I think will strengthen every relationship.  Sorry for not being specific, I just don't want to give anything away.  There is value I read that I want to put in my relationships from friendship, to work life. 

I can't be overly specific, because I'm just not the kind of person that ruins a book for someone else.  I'd be more than happy to talk more about it after you read it.  The book focuses on God, the entire time.  And that's good.  There are some solid biblical principles that I believe, that I saw in a new way.  Even if I don't necessarily live these principles the exact same way, I saw some things in a new light.  I also found a bit in every section that I could apply in some sense to my own life.  In the end I would recommend this read (and have already actually face to face).  I would particularly recommend it to young girls.  Teenage years are so formative, and to see someone else who has successfully came through those years and while in those years lived their faith strong I think is important.

This book releases TOMORROW: March 4, 2014.  So hurry out to your local bookstore and buy it for yourself or as a gift!  Don't let your differences turn you away, read through to the end and keep an open mind.  I'm sure you will find some good meat in this book.  These girls are inspiring.

This book was provided for review by NetGalley.

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