BOOK REVIEW: Present Over Perfect, by Shauna Niequist

BOOK 35/40

Hello dearest readers! I hope you’re all keeping well and feeling as lovely as ever.

So I am bringing you yet another book review- this week, I finished reading Shauna Niequist’s Present Over Perfect. I had heard rave reviews about this book- I’d seen some of the Robertson family Instagramming it, I’d seen other Christian bloggers talking about it, and having just finished a lot of Lysa TerKeurst’s books, I was intruiged. So I ordered it, popped it on my bookshelf… and watched it gather dust for about two months. Yay!

As I was cleaning my room recently, I rediscovered it sitting on my shelf, and thought ‘Hey, I meant to read you like, forever ago!’ and so I put it to the top of my ‘To Read’ pile, and YESTERDAY, I finished it (I have consumed a lot of coffee today, forgive me if this post is somewhat scattered!)


Niequist shares her journey in the form of a series of small essays, as she tries to move from a hectic, stressed fast pace-of-life, to a more relaxed, slowed down and mellow way of being. She brings us on the vulnerable adventure, describing how she’s trying to move from being GO GO GO to s l o w s l o w s l o w . It’s very simply a voyage of rediscovery- she wants to figure out the person that she was fearfully and wonderfully made to be, but it’s not easy. Throughout the novel, we see how difficult it can be to let go and say no, in order that you can regress to a less busy, less stressful way of life. It reminded me quite a bit of TerKeurst’s The Best Yes, actually.


My rating for this book is 3 / 5.


  • This book took me F O R E V E R to get into. Normally, I connect pretty well with this style of writing, and these themes, but boy, was this one a struggle. I genuinely almost gave up! Life is too short for books you don’t like. But I am glad I persevered; for me, I like to really connect with the author of these types of books, and I had no idea who Shauna was before I started reading, so maybe the lack of previous connection made it more difficult for me? Or perhaps the lack of relevance to my personal circumstances made it a bit slower for me to get into. Either way, it was a slog, but we made it


  • I liked the honesty, the vulnerability, and the emotion. Niequist isn’t afraid to share her flaws and her sensitivities with the reader, and so a bond is formed eventually bewtween author and audience.
  • I liked the style of writing- at first, it seemed very blog post-esque to me, but then I got used to it, and grew to enjoy the personal feel that this style of writing evokes
  • The short chapters mean that it’s an easy book to dip in and out of. Additionally, the was the book is broken up (the six sections) make it easy to follow the journey
  • I love that she is a writer, and she talks about writing and her love of books. Just like me!
  • The cover- I KNOW I KNOW you can’t judge a book and all that, but it is undeniably pretty. See!?



  • “It is better to be loved than admired” (113)
  • “How much more beautiful is God when we free him from our own wounds and tired narratives?” (139)
  • “I know that sometimes the darkest parts of us can be our teachers in ways that our sweeter qualities never could” (150)
  • “If you’re tired, you’re tired, no matter what” (164)
  • “Pleasing feels like corn syrup, like cheap candy, while pleasure is homemade pie, rich with butter, thick with sugar and ripe fruit” (172)

And that is IT! Here is a link to the book- if it sounds like your cup of tea, then go for it! Honestly, if you’re a TerKeurst fan, you’ll enjoy this.

A Bientot,

Amber xx


One Comment Add yours

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s