Book Review | Gist

*I received a copy of this book for review, but was not compensated financially in any way. The opinions expressed are my own and are based solely on my experiences while reading this book.*

My husband and I are raising our three young children who are ages 6, 7 and 8. While parenting is the most amazing experience of my life, it has also been filled with unexpected challenges along the way. Therefore, I was very interested in reading the parenting book Gist: The Essence of Raising Life Ready Kids. Written by Michael W Anderson who is a licensed psychologist and Dr. Timothy D Johanson who is a pediatrician, Gist is intended to help parents “re-think parenting”.


I appreciate that Gist is unlike the other parenting books that I have read in the past and it is applicable from the toddler years through college age so it is sure to become a staple in my home library. It also focuses on helping parents learn ways to make sure that their child will be ready for life through practical approaches and realistic solutions. I never expected that parenting would be easy but situations have already come up with my three children that has led me to examine whether or not I am a “good” parent. In the introduction, the authors explain that “Good parenting needs to be learned and practiced, since it doesn’t come naturally for most people.” This insight was very helpful so that better I understood that I could learn how to address scenarios which have continued to challenge me.

The goal of the book, Gist is to help us to understand the bottom line to how parenting really works. The book is separated into sections including the first part which discusses love, learning, living and joy. The second section is devoted to learning solid parenting through processes and provides ways to implement strategies that are proven to work in the real world.

I especially liked reading the case studies and the examples of various behaviors and situations facing many parents. I also enjoyed Chapter 17 titled “Over-Parenting” which is something important that I try to avoid but sometimes fear that I am doing unintentionally which will certainly hinder our children’s growth.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Gist: The Essence of Raising Life Ready Kids and expect that I will turn back to this book over the years to glean more information. If you having been searching for a comprehensive parenting book then I highly recommend reading this book. Gist is available for purchase for $24.95 (hard cover) and $17.95 (soft cover) at Gist Parenting.


Maureen is a SAHM who left the Corporate healthcare field to home educate her 6, 7 and 8 year old children. She is a voracious reader for both herself & her kids and also enjoys a natural and organic lifestyle. She lives in Orlando, Fl with her husband Mark, three children and 5 year old boxer, Jack.

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