I am always looking for new resources that may speak to teens. I am not sure why, but it seems there just aren’t that many books which claim to help teens think about popular culture subjects from a godly perspective. One of my favorite authors in the category has always been Rebecca St. James. My daughter and I discovered her with a series she had developed for mothers and daughters and we stayed with her as she developed new materials during my daughter’s teen years.
Recently I was given the chance to review a book aimed at teen girls by Nicole Weider and Kristen Billerbeck. (I’m guessing Billerbeck is the ghost writer, but I think they should get equal billing more often than they do!) Project Inspired: Tips and Tricks for Staying True to Who You Are attempts to cover the topics of interest to teen girls. From fashion to media to friends and boys, Weider gives tips from a Christian perspective.
A former model, Weider seems most comfortable when giving fashion tips and makeup suggestions. The section did a good job of showing realistic fashion and encouraging modesty to a generation normally coached to show as much skin as possible. The makeup section made me a tad uncomfortable, but only because she listed a lot of specific brands. It made that section feel like a giant ad (I have no idea whether the companies paid any money to be mentioned.)
The other sections on topics like friends and boys were peppered with references to Bible stories, her personal advice and a few scriptures. Although there were a couple of tiny statements which one could debate, I thought the advice was largely godly and on point. The book is written in a style which could appeal to young teen girls, especially those who might be interested in modeling or acting. Weider referred to a few reasons she became uncomfortable in the modeling world. Personally, I would have liked for her to spend more time on that, as so many teen girls think modeling is the answer to all of their problems. She could save many girls from a lot of pain if she focused more of her ministry on encouraging girls to avoid modeling.
If your daughter is interested in modeling, fashion or is just a girly girl, she will probably enjoy this book. My guess is it will appeal more to girls in the 12-14 year old range. The advice is more godly than what your daughter will find on similar topics in popular teen magazines. Ultimately, this book reads more like a thick magazine than a book. Topics are covered in broad strokes with a few bits of practical advice for each one. If your daughter wants a lot of depth in a subject like boys and dating, she should read some of the books by Rebecca St. James instead. On the other hand, if your young teen daughter wants a fun easy read on topics important to her, she will get enough value out of the book to make her happy. Older teen girls will find the information too basic – perhaps Weider will write a follow-up book for older teens.
This book was given to me for free in exchange for my honest review. Affiliate link is included for your convenience.