Nothing to Prove: Why We Can Stop Trying So Hard

Reviewed by: Hope Bolinger, a professional writing major at Taylor University.



Title: Nothing to Prove: Why We Can Stop Trying So Hard

Author: Jennie Allen

Publisher: Yates & Yates

Publication Date: 2017

Format: Print book

Length: 244 pages


Ever since Jennie Allen sat on her father’s lap at twelve years old, discussing boys, she has felt inadequacy in all areas of her life. From adopting a child from Rwanda to struggling with an eating disorder, Allen recognized her craving for approval and her seemingly shortfall of perfection had been ripping apart her life. And, she’s not alone. From women she has encountered through her IF ministry to a man she encountered crying in Whole Foods, she recognizes and provides a cure for the culture addicted to admiration. She underscores the fact that TV, movies, posters, ads, magazine covers, and political campaigns continually put forth images of perfect smiles, perfect bodies, perfect hairstyles, and perfect personalities. It’s an imaginary world no one can fit into.

Although Allen provides slivers of wisdom, the repetitive nature of the main points and disorganized structure of the book distracts the reader from any practical solutions. The adverb-plagued passages of processing offer very few pragmatic take-aways unless the reader happens to struggle with a Netflix addiction or an eating disorder. This book had potential it did not fully reach.


Rating (1 to 5)

3 stars

Suggested Audience

Christians struggling with inadequacy and the need for approval.

Christian Impact

Recognizing our imperfections is the first step to realizing our need for God. Vulnerably, Allen admits her shortcomings and encourages readers to do the same.


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Nothing to Prove: Why We Can Stop Trying So Hard

About Ceil Carey

The Evangelical Church Library Association, founded in 1970, is a fellowship of Christian churches, schools, and individuals.

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