I was excited to receive She's Twelve Going on Twenty by Kim Camp. The book is geared specifically as a Christ-centered guide for moms raising teens or preteens. Since my oldest daughter is about to turn twelve, I was really hoping to learn some new parenting strategies related to raising a tween. However, I'm a little mixed on this book.
I liked that the book is divided into three separate sections related to Spirit, Soul and Body. My brain can only fully focus on so many things, so it helps me to focus on a single aspect at a time. I also liked that each chapter had practical suggestions for mom and daughters to discuss issues or do activities together. An example was to listen to your daughter's favorite music and discuss with her the lyrics and themes of the music. Since my daughter listens primarily to music we (the parents) have downloaded into iTunes, it reminded me to reconsider what music I listen to as well.
One thing I didn't love about this book is that the ideas are not necessarily new or innovative. Not that they aren't good suggestions, but don't expect to hear much you haven't already heard. Also, and maybe this is a reflection on me, but I would have found Ms. Camp more relatable if she didn't seem so...perfect. I really appreciate the viewpoint of people who aren't perfect and share their mistakes. I relate to failure and regret, and I can't recall a single personal story in this book where Ms. Camp and/or her children were used as an example of what not to do. Perhaps this was a conscious decision to protect her children's privacy. In fairness, I understand Ms. Camp went through a divorce after the book was originally released and this version includes some updated advice relating to single moms as well as some personal notes. However, in all the examples of Ms. Camp as a teen herself or as a parent, she pretty consistently made all the right choices. I realize this is kind of a weird criticism (too perfect- the horror!) and is probably a reflection of how imperfect I view myself, but I find it helpful for an author to say this is a mistake I made and what I learned.
I don't strongly recommend buying this book, but it may be worth a try if you can get it for free or borrow a copy. Even at over 280 pages, it is a pretty quick and easy read.
I received this book for free from Booksneeze. All opinions expressed in this review are my own.