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4.17.2009

The Good, The Bad, The Objective

Michelle's Review of "How Can I Run a Tight Ship When I'm Surrounded by Loose Cannons?" by Kathi Macias

In this book, Kathi Macias has captured the insecurity of so many women and fleshed it out in words. It’s that secret desire to discover a magic formula for perfection that hides our not-so-secret flaws. Kathi reveals what women need to know regarding the comparison game. The perfect women doesn’t exist, and those seem mature and polished aren’t as put together as others would believe! It’s a breath of fresh air to have someone give the reader permission to be who she is.


Kathi is funny and she has a gift with words. I laughed aloud when I read, “sawing logs like a beaver on steroids.” But there were a few places where the humor seemed forced. There is so much really great humor in this book to go around that the not-so-funny and cliché humor could be left out and the reader wouldn’t really miss it. I also felt that the jokes about weight or size might be offensive to some readers. Labeling Bernadine as “Big Bertha” and “clueless about her size” as well as showing shock that she would order a “diet” soda, seems harsh. In another place, the author rooms with a stranger named Marcy at a conference, she describes her as her “chubby” saying that she “outweighed me by fifty pounds, so the chances that I’d get an entire ‘side’ of the bed were definitely not good.” Again, easily misconstrued by the reader struggling with self-image.


The author has included a “making it personal” section at the end of each chapter and this is very helpful for reflecting on the content and applying it to life. Each chapter also ends with a scripture quote that underscores the concept.


I felt like there were three themes going throughout the book: 1. Living up to the Proverbs 31 image. 2. The process of maturing: crawl, walk, run, fly, lean. 3. Loose cannons. I think I lost the cohesive thread somewhere in the middle but then it came back together at the end. It was almost as if the writer couldn’t decide on the main theme or the title so she worked out a way to squeeze all of the ideas in.


This would be a great book for a group of Christian women to go through for a reading club. I would not recommend the book for someone who is not a Christian mostly because someone unfamiliar with the Bible would not understand the significance of the Proverbs 31 woman. Although the introduction helps explain a little and the passage printed from Proverbs 31 at the beginning of the book would help, the book sets a tone for a Christian audience.


Despite the critical side of my review, I think this is a book that many will enjoy and take to heart. It’s a message women can’t hear often enough.

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