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Winning Balance: What I've Learned So Far about Love, Faith, and Living Your Dreams Hardcover – June 5, 2012
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G.D.W. © AudioFile Portland, Maine
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Top Customer Reviews
I did find the 2nd half of the book (post Olympics) surprising and honest, a lot of highs and lows for a young woman. Although I think she is probably 15-20 years too young to write a memoir on life lessons this is a decent book for a 20 year old athlete and is a fairly entertaining read.
She also knows what it's like to lose the gold medal everyone expected her to win--and then to win again where she least expected it.
Winning Balance might best be categorized as an inspirational memoir. With co-author Nancy French, Shawn describes her struggles and successes in finding true balance in life. This is the story of Shawn's journey from her childhood in Des Moines, Iowa, to her introduction to gymnastics, her growing love for the sport--and its competitiveness--and finally to international fame and the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Along the way, though, Shawn tries to follow two competing desires--"I wanted to win, and I wanted to be just like everyone else."
My biggest quibble with the book? Since much of its promo material focuses on Shawn's 2008 skiing accident, I expected the book to address this and her recovery process more in depth. It does highlight how Shawn struggled to find purpose and direction after her win--and how the injury actually helped Shawn refocus on her priorities--but don't expect a lot of detail.
Still, I found Shawn's story to be encouraging and enjoyable. The book is an easy read, and each chapter ends with a short thought for reflection. Enthusiasm seems to win out over depth in places, but overall, I found Shawn to be an engaging role model. She talks openly about the pressures she faced and her family's attempts to keep her sane in the midst of an intense training schedule. I liked her sincerity and vision, and I would recommend this book to any teen girl to read.
[My thanks to Tyndale for sending me a review copy of Winning Balance, in exchange for my honest opinion of this book.]
I can't even tell you how much I loved this book. To be honest I had never heard of Shawn Johnson before I saw this book was coming out (I missed watching the olympics 2008)and I have always been fascinated with the sport. I just knew I had to read her story and I was not disappointed at all. I fell in love with Shawn and her story and find her raw talent and passion to be so encouraging. Shawn drew me into her story so much that I finished the book within 24 hours! Since reading the book I have enjoyed going on youtube.com and watching her many gymnastic performances and her dances from Dancing with the Stars. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves gymnastics, wanting to be encouraged by her strength and faith, and anyone who has already loved her and wants to know her story!
*I received this book through Radiant Lit and Tyndale for the purpose of this review!
Johnson combined many elements in her writing. Not only was it filled with her experiences in gymnastics, but also her relationship with God, family, friends and boys. She also discussed a lot of her experience on Dancing with the Stars as well.
A great read for people of any age, I quickly passed it to a young aspiring gymnast who ate up what Johnson had to say. I definitely recommend Winning Balance to anyone looking for inspiration to balance a seemingly impossibly imbalanced life!
Perhaps the most insightful parts of this book are Shawn's profession about her family's faith - their belief in God but infrequent church attendance. Biblically, we are told that Christianity is a hard maintain without gathering with others at Sunday services but I don't believe that someone cannot have a genuine relationship with Christ if they don't attend church. Within these pages, Shawn shares about her growing faith in a heartfelt way that makes the reader believe she enjoys nothing less than a daily walk with Him.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I love this book, finished reading it within a day ! I can't believe how a 17 year old girl (then) could write such an honest and entertaining book. Read morePublished 18 days ago by Amazon Customer
I love Shawn Johnson so much! She is such a good role model for girls and I am so excited to read this book. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
only read it if you are an avid gymnast fan such as myself. Otherwise it is not worth your time, it is very obviously written by a young teenager.Published 8 months ago by Carole-Anne Pelletier
If you are expecting to hear a lot about gymnastics, this may not be the book for you. But, if you want to know about Shawn Johnson, the person, this book is an easy read, well... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Greg H.
Was given this book at a bed and breakfast and wasn't sure it was for me. Fantastic book in everyway! I'm forwarding on my copy, it was a great surprise.Published 10 months ago by Mindy