Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Shauna Niequist - Bread and Wine [Book Review]

One word, four letters, sometimes overrated mostly underrated. And for her third book, Author Shauna Niequist decides to dive totally into this topic, head on. No shame. Bread and Wine is about food and what it’s really meant to do. It’s about how food isn’t just to nourish our bodies but also to nourish our souls. And it’s classic Shauna’s style with her real life stories and lesson learnt or a dawning or an epiphany.

I am a hard-core Shauna fan and I have followed her blog since ‘Cold Tangerines’ to ‘BitterSweet’ and even the in between of ‘Bread and Wine’ but I choose not to write this review as a bimbo raving fan. Did bread and wine do it for me? I’m not quite sure. Though first of all, I must give an ‘atta girl’ to Shauna for offering her real- life everyday experience to people to learn from. That is bold and at the same time daring. It’s prone to leave the artist tender and wondering ‘what would the people make of this?’ I mean its real-life not the framed up Hollywood ‘reality’ shows we are used to. Real life. That said, Bread and Wine for me felt mostly like pieces of ingredients from her former books mixed together with ‘Recipes’ and baked into 'Bread and Wine'. And another issue I had with this book was how it ironically went against it central message of bringing people together to ‘the table’. It’s heavily culturally inclined. Dear Shauna, not only Americans read you; you've got a BIG platform. I have nothing against Shauna enjoying wine, beer, tonic and various alcoholic drinks, but I kept wondering for the teetotaler who wanted to join Shauna’s table. I write this with honest sincerity so that this great writer of mine can turn out better books in the future.

With Shauna, each chapter is a book on its own so it's hard to review a book of books. It's hard to tell you how one fell short and was full of gibberish while another was beautiful and full of wisdom. It's hard to tell you how one made me almost wipe a tear and how another almost made me throw the book across the room. Is Shauna worth reading? Yes! Absolutely yes! She has a fresh perspective to faith and how it soaks into everyday life. But for new readers and boys and men please start from Cold Tangerines before you pick up this one. It would add more color and perspective to the picture and help you appreciate Shauna's journey better.

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