Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers
Publication Date: June 21, 2013
Tindell Baldwin's words best describe her passion and this book: "My heart is for teenage girls because my story is much like so many of theirs. I was just a girl who made a lot of mistakes. I was a girl who had sex before marriage and then had a broken heart. I was a girl who did drugs and drank to fill the void that was deep in my heart. I was a girl who was desperate to be popular. A girl who, like so many others, didn't know the dark side of sin. So my aim is to reach teenage girls, and through an honest account of my darkest sins, show them what they are up against. My heart is that teens would hear my story and flee to Christ. My greatest desire is that God would be glorified above all else." Through a two-part journey ("Dark" and "Light"), Tindell details how she said goodbye to her family's God and pursued popularity at all costs while climbing the social chain in high school. During a night of partying, she even encountered the man suspected of killing Natalee Holloway in Aruba. But God did not leave Tindell. The "Light" part of her story shows how she reconnected with God, changed her ways, and discovered abundant and real life through Christ.
I want to send you a message of hope in some of the darkest days of your life, because changing the direction of your life right now might be just what this world needs.
First of all, this is not my usual genre of books here-- I just saw the cover and read the blurb, and then I knew that I needed to read this one. Popular was a very surprising read, actually. It's really hard to review, though, because in the back of my mind I'm thinking about how this is Tindell's actual life story, so...it's just kind of different, you know?
I liked the way the first part, "Dark" was told. It seemed to true and heartbreaking, and it really read like a teenager's diary. At some point, I know without a doubt that we've all felt exactly the way that Tindell did. I know that I have, so I imagine that most teen girls have. I loved that she mentioned Beth Moore-- my mother loves her!
But on to the story-- Tindell really knows how to grab you. Gotta love that-- my only problem with Tindell's writing was that it tends to bounce around from event to event, which confused me. I couldn't exactly follow it completely, which was disappointing. The "dark" hit me so much harder than the "light" did. I can't really identify with the "light", honestly. It seemed overly preachy, which made me worry about whether or not some teens would be scared away from it.
Basically, Popular reads like a really long spiritual conversation. The kind we've probably all had before. I liked how it seemed like Tindell was talking straight to the reader. I guess my relationship with this book is just hard to describe...I think that if you're a teen girl, you should probably give it a shot. It may or may not be your thing, but you'll never know unless you try it.