"Winning Balance" by Shawn Johnson, the Olympian, is a not an autobiography (her words) but a book about what she has learned so far about love, faith, and living your dreams. In my opinion it is about as autobiographical as you can get. She starts with birth and goes on from there. At the ripe old age of 20 she has done quite a bit of living. She tells of training in gymnastics from an early age, to the Olympics, to Dancing With the Stars, to an attempted comeback, to retirement. That's a lot crammed into 20 years. This is the second book I have read this year by an Olympian and the second I have read by a DWTS champ. It was interesting to see her point of view as she was by far the youngest and the only female as well as generational American of the three authors. She isn't a great writer. She sees things young, she writes young,; but hey, she is. She doesn't get real deep into herself, she mostly sticks to the play-by-play writing method. I would recommend this book for the gymnastics fan or really anyone wanting a light hearted non-fiction. No raves, but no complaints either. C I received this book for free through the Summer Reading Program through Tyndale Publishing.
I absolutely loved this book! Shawn is just so real and down to earth that you cannot help but to fall in love with her! At the end of most chapters, she has a life lesson that she has learned. And her poetry is shared throughout the book. Lovely book and would definitely recommend it!
Olympic gold-medalist gymnast Johnson has written an endearing memoir of her rise to winning three silver medals and one gold at age 16. Every bit as interesting are her accounts of coping with the aftermath of fame, both as an Olympic champion and as a reality-TV star on Dancing with the Stars. Among the details: slips on the balance beam in front of Olympic judges, spats with parents, learning to wear heels, and realizing that what looks good on TV—makeup and hair extensions—can look strange in person. Johnson’s “balanced” beginnings seem almost too idyllic at the start of the book, but as her struggle toward Olympic glory plays out, we come to appreciate the sturdy values of parents who knew instinctively to honor her high energy and uniqueness. Johnson emerges as a powerhouse champion with a winning attitude, always making the best of circumstances, even an injury that could have ended her career. Her book celebrates both family love and faith in God as wellsprings of strength. A solid offering from a woman wiser than her years suggest she might be.