Jana’s Journal

Sunday, October 3, 2010
“But is it so wrong to want to feel good about yourself? To have all that self-confidence and self-esteem Ms. Langdon talked about? I mean, even out pastor and all those youth speakers are always talking about that.”

Book: Jana’s Journal by Jeanette Windle, Kregel Publications, 2002
Jana's Journal: A Novel
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Target Audience: Girls 14-19
Subjects: Self-esteem, showing love to others
Summary: Jana is tired of being taken advantage of. Her mom expects her to always be available to babysit her younger brother so she can run off and do what she wants. The teacher who runs the school newspaper doesn’t give her the position she wanted, but then places more responsibility on her when things go wrong, the choir director gets mad if she can’t play the piano for them, the youth pastor makes her feel guilty for speaking or not speaking during youth group. Finally, a counselor comes to the school and tells Jana just what she wants to her: She needs to feel good about herself and put herself first. Jana takes that advice to heart and begins telling people off. But that doesn’t seem to work either. Another person gives her a much harder answer: think of others first, in fact, he convinces her to come work in an inner city youth center where she encounters some extremely dangerous things and learns a few things about what’s really important.
Notes: Jana has to learn a balance between being a doormat and having people walk all over you and only thinking of yourself and treating others like garbage. It’s a fine line and not easy to find, but the lessons in this book are taught well. Jana undergoes a lot of change between the different sections of the book and learns a lot of valuable things.
Recommendation Scale: 5/5
Reviewer: J:-)mi
Philippians 2:3 - Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit but in humility, consider others better than yourself.


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