It has been a while since we have had a new book from Donald Miller, author of Blue Like Jazz and A Million Miles in A Thousand Years. His latest book, Scary Close, could possibly be his best to date. Miller came to write Scary Close after dealing with the fact that he is no good at relationships, even though his friend Bob continually throughout the book tells him that he is good at relationships. Miller’s barrier to intimacy and lasting relationships, especially with females, is his pretending and putting up a strong façade of importance. His “writing life” as a hermit and in isolation hasn’t served him or others well. He decides to take a journey toward “dropping the act and finding true intimacy” as the book’s subtitle says. He takes his readers with him on the journey and much is learned by all as keys to intimacy are discovered. Through each chapter, Miller introduces us to his fiancé/wife Betsy, who also served as one of his most important relationship teachers. The book is built largely around his relationship with Betsy, but the principles are important for all relationships and applicable in simply being a healthy human being living in community with other humans. Community is something we all need and daily need a reminder of its importance.
Miller rightfully points out that trying to impress others and pretending to be something we are not just to be accepted is harmful not just to our own identities but to those around us as well. We need to be real and okay with who we are, but always in the context of seeking to be better at relationships. I have to admit that while reading this book there were a few times that I had to stop myself from comparing myself to people in the book. At those times I remembered that wanting to be something I am not can lead to my own hiding behind a face that doesn’t belong to me and it blocks intimacy. I am okay and God is writing my story.
Scary Close is an easy and fun read, most definitely worth the time. If you are familiar with and a fan of Miller’s previous books, you will not be disappointed with Scary Close. It is written with honesty and is confessional at points. It is convicting and inspirational. It is a keeper. Read it. More than once. Then apply liberally to your life.
I received this book from Booklookbloggers.com in exchange for an honest review.