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I was drawn to Annie F. Downs’ Let’s All Be Brave for several reasons–one being that the author, like myself, is single (although several years younger than me), and she lives in Nashville, where I went to school and where I hope to move back to someday. But the main reason I wanted to read this book was because I often find myself struggling to, as the subtitle says, live life with everything I have. It’s hard for me to step out of my comfort zone and put myself at risk for failure or embarrassment or even discomfort. I figured that reading a book written by someone who has been similarly challenged to step out of her own comfort zone would be good motivation for me to, well, be braver in my life.

Unfortunately, I just found the book to be so-so. It was essentially a series of essays from different moments in Downs’ life where she felt the need to be brave, from her post-college move from her native Georgia to Nashville, to living overseas in Scotland and moving back to Nashville. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy reading other people’s life stories and the lessons they’ve learned from them, but it felt like each chapter ended with the same refrain to be brave. After a while I wanted to tell her, “Okay, I get it–I’m supposed to be brave and trust God and let go and be brave some more.”

I did enjoy her stories, and particularly liked the chapter in which she addressed her struggle to trust God’s timing and ways when it comes to singleness and marriage. That’s an area in which I could really identify with her.  Overall, the book was entertaining but not quite as deep as I’d hoped it would be.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255“Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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