Thursday, July 3, 2014

Book Review: Singled Out (Nikki Derouin)

Ever imagine that you would be the only single young woman among all your married peers? Singled Out: Finding Contentment When It's Just You and the Lord is written with you, that sole single woman, in mind.

Author Nikki Derouin hoped that her personal experience and faith journey would help her peers in similar circumstances. What does God want you to do with your singleness? How can you live in light of His calling on your life despite your desire to be married?

The short book is intended to be read one chapter each week. Each chapter concludes with a "Challenge" section, study questions (most of them based on Scripture readings in addition to the chapter reading), and practical application. The book concludes with an appendix of "Works All Women Can Do," by Janice Garner, which lists 64 different works of service.

As a single woman, I had high hopes for this book. Regrettably, while I agreed with some of the content, I found myself disappointed with the rest. The focus is mostly on encouraging young women to get more active in the lives of others rather than wish they were married. I struggled to follow the theme throughout because the content is disorganized; if you sat down to discuss the topic of single women with the author in person, say in a coffee shop, you'd get the same conversational style with which she writes, but that style detracts credibility from the book's thesis. It's a weighty subject to tackle, and something about the jumps from one unrelated topic to another (even in the same chapter) kept me dissatisfied.

I didn't enjoy the appendix, either, which reads as though berating single women for not getting out enough and doing more with their lives so they can't sit around and feel sorry for themselves because they're still single. I would have appreciated a comment about the different spiritual gifts and callings, and how not every single person is called and/or gifted to undertake every single act of service that Christ emulates (or that the appendix author lists).

I'm also an editor and proofreader, and the work could have used a final proofread. I stumbled over the awkward wording of several sentences, and came across a couple of misspelled words that really threw my attention. The periodic use of ALL CAPITAL LETTERS (especially in the appendix) made me feel shouted at because capital letters aren't typically used even for emphasis these days.

Despite its possible practicality, I don’t intend to re-read this work.

Title: Singled Out: Finding Contentment When It’s Just You and the Lord
Author: Nikki Derouin
ISBN: 978-4-62080-988-4
Purchase here:

Disclaimer: I received this book free from the publisher through the review program in exchange for an honest, though not necessarily positive, review. The opinions I have expressed are mine alone.

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