On the Bright Side
Big Mama blog founder and New York Times bestselling author Melanie Shankle helps us sort through our questions about being true to ourselves in a world gone crazy and what matters the most in the end.These days, so many voices tell us what to do, what to think, and what kind of parent or friend or spouse to be that it's easy to feel overwhelmed and defeated. Somewhere in the midst of online arguments and crazy politics and the ups and downs of life, we've lost sight of the gifts that are all around us: kindness, love, mercy, and joy.In On the Bright Side, Melanie Shankle reminds us of the unchanging principles we can count on in a changing world. These are lessons that Melanie has learned along the way about how to find all the joy that life has to offer - and why encouragement is never something to keep to ourselves. Exploring topics such as dealing with comparisons, when life doesn't turn out like we expected, and how to find your people, Melanie invites us to lead with love in all areas of our lives.This delightful memoir highlights the joys of life told in Melanie's down to earth, relatable, and totally enjoyable style. On the Bright Side is a how-to guide to knowing - and living - what matters most.

On the Bright Side Details

TitleOn the Bright Side
Author
ReleaseFeb 25th, 2020
PublisherZondervan
ISBN-139780310349440
Rating
GenreChristian, Nonfiction, Audiobook

On the Bright Side Review

  • Kristin
    January 1, 1970
    I read this coming-soon book in two days, two rainy days to be exact. Honestly, I’m over this wet winter we’ve had. The dreary, short days leave me longing for the next season. I find myself doing that with life sometimes too.But Melanie Shankle's new book is a breath of fresh, bright air. She’s real and funny while writing about the ordinary and important stuff that make up our lives. This book reminded me of the bright side of parenting, friendship, pain, marriage, faith, fear, and bravery.“ I read this coming-soon book in two days, two rainy days to be exact. Honestly, I’m over this wet winter we’ve had. The dreary, short days leave me longing for the next season. I find myself doing that with life sometimes too.But Melanie Shankle's new book is a breath of fresh, bright air. She’s real and funny while writing about the ordinary and important stuff that make up our lives. This book reminded me of the bright side of parenting, friendship, pain, marriage, faith, fear, and bravery.“Our whole lives are journeys with beginnings, middles, and ends. We worry about whatever the next stage of life is that feels too uncertain, because it’s in those middle places that we often experience the heartbreak and hard times of life. But if we are willing to stop and look, it’s in those same middle places that we will see God for who he really is, because we finally have to admit that we didn’t know as much as we thought we did.”The sunshine came out the other day and gave me a renewed perspective of God’s faithfulness. That’s exactly what this book did for my soul. I was left encouraged and ready to finish this season well before another one begins.
    more
  • Maureen
    January 1, 1970
    A book that quotes the Scriptures, C.S. Lewis, and Dr. Seuss? An author who makes you laugh and cry, think and sigh? That’s my kind of book! On the Bright Side by Melanie Shankle offers anecdotes and thoughts on a variety of relatable topics ranging from friendship, faith, and family to beauty, aging, and being brave. She is faithful, forthcoming, and funny! While many people have “lost the art of looking on the bright side”, Melanie helps us do just that. Even though I am retired and an A book that quotes the Scriptures, C.S. Lewis, and Dr. Seuss? An author who makes you laugh and cry, think and sigh? That’s my kind of book! On the Bright Side by Melanie Shankle offers anecdotes and thoughts on a variety of relatable topics ranging from friendship, faith, and family to beauty, aging, and being brave. She is faithful, forthcoming, and funny! While many people have “lost the art of looking on the bright side”, Melanie helps us do just that. Even though I am retired and an empty-nester, my soccer mom days a distant memory, her words still resonated with me. For example, she shares her feelings about her teenage daughter growing up and muses: “The worst thing kids do is grow up, turn into lovely people you genuinely adore, and then move out of your house.” Oh, how I could relate! At the end of each chapter, she offers an “on the bright side” reflection, because “We will love better, live richer, and laugh more when we live on the bright side.” This book is a delightful read that feels more like a conversation with a kind friend, one who knows that life has both ups and downs, but “the bright side is that you have a God who is always working for your good, even in the hardest of times.” I highly recommend this book!
    more
  • Carrie
    January 1, 1970
    Funny, witty, and heartwarming. Shankle takes on the lessons of life with hilarious anecdotes peppered with 80s references - remember Gunne Sax and jelly shoes, Swatch and home perms? Each chapter has a theme and focus with a "brighter side" take-away that is typically the good kind of common sense advice you hear from your most trusted friend. For example, in her chapter on Comparison and Competition, she notes that these things "cease to be healthy when they do nothing but make you feel like Funny, witty, and heartwarming. Shankle takes on the lessons of life with hilarious anecdotes peppered with 80s references - remember Gunne Sax and jelly shoes, Swatch and home perms? Each chapter has a theme and focus with a "brighter side" take-away that is typically the good kind of common sense advice you hear from your most trusted friend. For example, in her chapter on Comparison and Competition, she notes that these things "cease to be healthy when they do nothing but make you feel like what you have isn't enough." There are some biblical examples in each chapter too and most were a good fit for the point Shankle was trying to drive home. Her own personal examples of being a wife, mother, community member, and working woman ring more true in her authenticity and willingness to look less-than-perfect. Mostly her goal is to restore some joy and kindness to our daily lives and our interactions with each other and this hits the mark.
    more
  • Alaina Pollard
    January 1, 1970
    I am so grateful that I got to read this before its release date (February 25, 2020). Melanie is such a sincere author. I do not have her gift of writing, but I'll do my best to share my thoughts about her latest book.Melanie is amazing at being open and real with her readers. She shares tender moments, funny stories, and God's grace through his Word. You may shed a tear while reading this, but I'm almost positive you'll relate to what she's sharing and you'll learn to give yourself more grace. I am so grateful that I got to read this before its release date (February 25, 2020). Melanie is such a sincere author. I do not have her gift of writing, but I'll do my best to share my thoughts about her latest book.Melanie is amazing at being open and real with her readers. She shares tender moments, funny stories, and God's grace through his Word. You may shed a tear while reading this, but I'm almost positive you'll relate to what she's sharing and you'll learn to give yourself more grace. Life is hard, but God is still HERE. He's working all the while. I found many sentences worth highlighting, but here is one I'll share:"The bright side is, he loves us enough to lead us to exactly who he made us to be, and to give us victory when we stand our ground and fight to stay true to ourselves in a world that will tell us all the ways we need to change."
    more
  • Katie
    January 1, 1970
    So uplifting and funny! I want to win the lottery to buy this for every one of my female friends, and the aquatints too I love Melanie Shankle’s books. She’s one of the few authors I will read and re-read, and listen on Audible, and then re-read my Kindle highlights in a year. In this memoir, I love how she takes a funny, memorable story, find a related biblical story, relate it to all of our lives, and remind us of the bright side of any low points. I think any woman (or girl over the age of So uplifting and funny! I want to win the lottery to buy this for every one of my female friends, and the aquatints too I love Melanie Shankle’s books. She’s one of the few authors I will read and re-read, and listen on Audible, and then re-read my Kindle highlights in a year. In this memoir, I love how she takes a funny, memorable story, find a related biblical story, relate it to all of our lives, and remind us of the bright side of any low points. I think any woman (or girl over the age of 16) will get something from this book, but as I read it, I kept thinking of my friend and neighbor, Jamie. Jamie’s daughter is rounding out her Junior year right now, just like Melanie’s daughter Caroline. Both moms have seen their competitive, Jesus-loving daughters face some tough challenges these past couple of years, particularly in the area of friends. They have had to encourage when their kid is down, say “good luck with that” when an opportunity for natural consequences arises, and agonize when there is nothing momma can do to help, other than listen and recognize something as character building. If this is you as a mom, or you are on either side of this season, get this book now. Now, I’m going to go buy a winning lottery ticket so I can afford to buy this book for every female I know.
    more
  • Lorraine Reep
    January 1, 1970
    I’m a fan of transparency peppered with sarcasm. Melanie Shankle has me laughing, crying while considering the bright side of everyday life. From staying married to raising children, from aging gracefully (but always looking for that perfect moisturizer) and making good fashion choices to fighting to be true to yourself Melanie shares real life stories of what can happen when you look for the bright side of all the things. I love a memoir and this one is a must read for women of all ages. I love I’m a fan of transparency peppered with sarcasm. Melanie Shankle has me laughing, crying while considering the bright side of everyday life. From staying married to raising children, from aging gracefully (but always looking for that perfect moisturizer) and making good fashion choices to fighting to be true to yourself Melanie shares real life stories of what can happen when you look for the bright side of all the things. I love a memoir and this one is a must read for women of all ages. I love her list of things to help you find the bright side because let’s be real...some days it’s hard to see but so worth it to help you know the joy of a life well lived. You are going to laugh out loud, I promise.
    more
  • Sarah A
    January 1, 1970
    Melanie Shankle uses her daily life and humor to remind me to be grateful, kind, gentle with self and others, and to live as God’s people. She reminds me that often when life gets in the way, I often will forget what grounds me— people in my life. She tells real life stories I can identify with — friendship, family, loss, failure, exploits from younger days. . . . She uses biblical stories to remind me of God’s promises and constant presence. One of my favorite quotes in the book is: “Here’s the Melanie Shankle uses her daily life and humor to remind me to be grateful, kind, gentle with self and others, and to live as God’s people. She reminds me that often when life gets in the way, I often will forget what grounds me— people in my life. She tells real life stories I can identify with — friendship, family, loss, failure, exploits from younger days. . . . She uses biblical stories to remind me of God’s promises and constant presence. One of my favorite quotes in the book is: “Here’s the secret to life: put God first. Every good decision I’ve made can be traced directly back to how much I trusted God and listened to his voice before I made it.” Reading this book provided me with my favorite things about reading— a few laughs, a lot of truth, and some tears.
    more
  • Jill
    January 1, 1970
    I love Melanie Shankle (and, if I’m being honest, often refer to her as “my friend, Mel” even though we’ve never met). I’ve read all her books, am an avid listener of her podcast, and buy many of the products she recommends. She is real and honest and relatable. And, because we are the same age, her reflections on the 80’s are spot on and always make me laugh. My only “complaint” (more of an observation, I guess) is that, because I listen to her podcast, I’d already heard a lot of the stories in I love Melanie Shankle (and, if I’m being honest, often refer to her as “my friend, Mel” even though we’ve never met). I’ve read all her books, am an avid listener of her podcast, and buy many of the products she recommends. She is real and honest and relatable. And, because we are the same age, her reflections on the 80’s are spot on and always make me laugh. My only “complaint” (more of an observation, I guess) is that, because I listen to her podcast, I’d already heard a lot of the stories in this new book. On the bright side, the book came out right in the middle of an unexpected week of doctor-prescribed bed rest so I was able to enjoy it immediately.
    more
  • Deanna
    January 1, 1970
    What the World NeedsAuthor Melanie Shankle had me on page 12, “We have forgotten what it means to give a fellow human the benefit of the double.” When reading those words, I may have yelled, “Yes!” I’m guilty and, if we are honest, so are many of us. Digging into the pages, the author had me laughing, agreeing, and whispering, “Amen.” Some chapters hit me more than others did but with so many topics she touches on, you will love the entire book. The author is a storyteller with comedic timing What the World NeedsAuthor Melanie Shankle had me on page 12, “We have forgotten what it means to give a fellow human the benefit of the double.” When reading those words, I may have yelled, “Yes!” I’m guilty and, if we are honest, so are many of us. Digging into the pages, the author had me laughing, agreeing, and whispering, “Amen.” Some chapters hit me more than others did but with so many topics she touches on, you will love the entire book. The author is a storyteller with comedic timing and the way she turns each chapter topic into a lesson, a great teacher, too! Do yourself a favor and grab On The Bright Side!
    more
  • Sarahbelle528
    January 1, 1970
    I've been reading Melanie Shankle's blog (Big Mama) for over 13 years. I have all her books and was fortunate enough to be part of this launch team as well as the launch of a previous book. Melanie writes with a perfect balance of humor and seriousness, silly and sweet. I always smile when reading her books and On the Bright Side is no exception. She finds a way to weave personal stories with biblical principles in a way that is touching but not overbearingly "too religious." She's a role model I've been reading Melanie Shankle's blog (Big Mama) for over 13 years. I have all her books and was fortunate enough to be part of this launch team as well as the launch of a previous book. Melanie writes with a perfect balance of humor and seriousness, silly and sweet. I always smile when reading her books and On the Bright Side is no exception. She finds a way to weave personal stories with biblical principles in a way that is touching but not overbearingly "too religious." She's a role model for me and the type of christian wife and mother I hope to be. I also hope to be as funny as her but I don't think I can reach her level. #BeBetterThanMabel
    more
  • Melissa
    January 1, 1970
    Another thoroughly enjoyable read from Melanie! I love her writing style, the anecdotes and the humor and the way her books leave a smile on my face. This one was no different from her earlier books. I devoured the audio version(which Melanie herself reads!) and adored it. It will definitely be a reread and a relisten, since I bought both the hard copy and the audio version. Yep, love her books that much! And this read was well worth it! Recommended!
    more
  • Corrie Gerbatz
    January 1, 1970
    This book right here is so worth every penny spent! I ordered myself a copy, finished reading the second chapter and just knew my bestie needed a copy too. So I gifted her my copy and ordered myself another #winning. These days everyone could benefit from a little “bright side”! Melanie’s ability to encourage with humor and Inspire with gospel truths is what makes this book so bingeworthy-flipping-fantastic.
    more
  • Sarah
    January 1, 1970
    5/5— I don’t know if it’s because I read it at exactly the right time or because I listened to it on audio, but I think this is Melanie’s best work yet! I resonated with every single thing she says, even though we are in different life places. She’s hilarious and truthful, and that combination is a powerful thing. 5/5⭐️— I don’t know if it’s because I read it at exactly the right time or because I listened to it on audio, but I think this is Melanie’s best work yet! I resonated with every single thing she says, even though we are in different life places. She’s hilarious and truthful, and that combination is a powerful thing.
    more
  • Melissa
    January 1, 1970
    “On the Bright Side” is Melanie Shankle’s new book about looking on the bright side of whatever life throws your way. We all have disappointments, hurts, and sorrows, but it is important to remember that there is a bright side in everything. Melanie brings her signature humor to “On the Bright Side” and had me laughing, as well as crying, throughout the book. I highly recommend everything Melanie writes!I received a copy of this book from the publisher and the opinions expressed are my own.
    more
  • Katie Garoni
    January 1, 1970
    I absolutely love all of Melanie Shankle’s books. Her stories are about everyday life, but bring humor to the mundane and monotonous. Thank you for another fun book for us to devour and cherish. I love the theme of this book- a reminder to look on the Brightside every day- thank you for the encouragement and challenge! May we all look on the bright side, and encourage others to do the same.
    more
  • Liza Abadjian
    January 1, 1970
    If you never read Melanie’s books , hurry up and start . She is so funny , truthful , hilarious as she writes about life matters , motherhood , friendships , college , marriage issues and such . I laugh out loud every time !
  • Kathy Spann
    January 1, 1970
    Another lovely book by Melanie Shankle. Melanie’s down to earth stories about marriage, raising a teenage girl, and friendship is a delight. I have read all of her books, and this one did not disappoint. When our life doesn’t measure up to Instagram- take some advice out of this book.
    more
  • Jen
    January 1, 1970
    Reading Melanie Shankle's books are like having a visit with an old friend - you laugh, you cry, you laugh again and you always walk away feeling better. Her writing style is so relatable and the message is always loud and clear!
  • Shana Stoll
    January 1, 1970
    I love Melanie Shankle’s writing, and this one did not disappoint! Witty and funny and true. A light, but so good, read that was just what I needed during a tough season of life. Great reminders of what is important — and with humor to make it even better!
    more
  • Teresa Staton
    January 1, 1970
    Melanie Shankle is one of my favorite writers- funny, encouraging and relatable. And out of the five books I’ve read of hers, this one may be my favorite. Whatever she writes, I will be there to read it because she doesn’t disappoint.
  • Sarah White
    January 1, 1970
    This book is like visiting with a best friend. A must read especially if you are a mother of a teenager!
  • Nicki Glenn
    January 1, 1970
    Melanie Shankle's writing is my favorite. She makes me laugh. She also makes me cry. I bought this on preorder and couldn't wait for it to arrive. I loved it so much that I read it in one day!!!!
  • Sarah
    January 1, 1970
    Shankle’s wit and wisdom, 80’s references, and encouraging scriptures are always a treat.
  • natalie
    January 1, 1970
    I am almost halfway through this book and I love it! Melanie Shankle is an amazing writer, and this may be my favorite book of hers so far. This book is written for right where I am in this phase of life - married almost twenty years, raising an almost 13 and a 15 year old. Girlfriends, husbands, and kids - it’s where it’s at!
    more
  • Stella Owen
    January 1, 1970
    I loved this book! It was so funny and relatable! The topics that she addresses are so applicable to issues we as women and Christians deal with today. Love it, and highly recommend!
  • Sarah
    January 1, 1970
    Such a great and timely book about looking for the bright things in life. Loved it!
  • Lisa
    January 1, 1970
    Another great book by this author. As with her other books, she does a wonderful job of teaching and telling her own personal story.
  • Cindy
    January 1, 1970
    This book is like a chat with your best friend. Melanie alternately has me in tears or laughing, but the underlying theme is every single thing in your life has a bright side.
  • Amy
    January 1, 1970
    Sweet, lovely and inspirational
  • Mommy Tunes
    January 1, 1970
    This is the loveliest book. It is as comforting as an episode for "Friends". Really, anything Melanie Shankle writes is encouraging, heart-felt and witty. She is walking marriage, parenthood and friendship right along with her. You will find yourself talking back, saying, "I know, right?!"Melanie is a mat-talker for Jesus and for you as you go through this thing called life. She honors friendships, she encourages you that God gave you your children because He KNEW you were capable, and she This is the loveliest book. It is as comforting as an episode for "Friends". Really, anything Melanie Shankle writes is encouraging, heart-felt and witty. She is walking marriage, parenthood and friendship right along with her. You will find yourself talking back, saying, "I know, right?!"Melanie is a mat-talker for Jesus and for you as you go through this thing called life. She honors friendships, she encourages you that God gave you your children because He KNEW you were capable, and she reminds you that you once prayed for the man who doesn't always pick up his dirty laundry.Curl up on the sofa with a cup of coffee and enjoy the book. It is refreshing and refuels the soul.
    more
Write a review