Dare to Be Different, Free to Be Yourself

Deann Hummel

Publisher: iUniverse Pages: 159 Price: (paperback) $15.95 ISBN: 9781532033438 Reviewed: February, 2018 Author Website: Visit »

Deann Hummel challenges readers to love themselves and let go of the past by choosing to “live out loud” in her self-affirming guide, Dare to be Different, Free to be Yourself.

For years, Deann Hummel lived under the self-inflicted pressure of maintaining a perfect image while being a people pleaser. Through faith in God’s love, Hummel broke free from this stressful lifestyle. Now she offers personal encouragement to anyone struggling with insecurities and life’s many sorrows.

Hummel is the ultimate pep-talking life coach. Her words aim to breathe positivity into even the most depressed soul as she teaches how God’s love can heal all pain and inspire hope for the future. Her experience with the death of her son makes her uniquely equipped to help others struggling with similar dark times, even though she glosses over this event.

While Hummel’s wisdom is conveyed with infectious, upbeat energy, her quirky writing style hampers the book’s effectiveness. Hummel frequently writes in rhyme—sometimes in stanzas, other times within her prose—which evokes a comical, Dr. Seuss-like silliness that is detrimental to her credibility. Often her rhymes fail to make sense. For example, she states, “It’s best to let go of all the rules, and act like fools sitting on the stools” or “You are on the roll of anger and resentment as you live in the basement.”

This jarring childishness coupled with consistent grammatical and typographical errors as well as Hummel’s sporadic use of unprofessional wording such as “crap”  and “little fart” distract readers from her message. Numerous clichés (“Be all that you can be”) and platitudes (“Keep shining and smiling, and be the real you”) also sap the book’s momentum.

Hummel’s message is pertinent to anyone facing depression and social anxiety, but her writing requires professional editing for it to be competitive in today’s market.

Also available as an ebook.

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