Simply God

I was attracted to Rick Richards's book, Simply God, by the title and by its promise of delivering a radical new view of what it means to be a leader in Christ.

As I began reading it, I struggled to stay interested. The writing was, frankly, boring, and the design of the book (including the cover) was unattractive. The more I read, the more I thought, I can't believe a publisher actually accepted this for publication. I soon found out the mistake was mine; the book is a product of WestBow Press, Nelson's imprint for subsidy publishing. It shows.

There are some good things in the book, but they are buried under a pile of unnecessary words and unimaginative prose. There are few illustrations to enliven the author's points. No humor. No charm. And some rookie mistakes, such as claiming a level of inspiration for this book that is nowhere in evidence IN it. As a lover of God AND as a reader and writer, I sincerely believe God is far more interesting, creative, engaging, and exciting than the thoughts and words the author attributes to him.

Simply put, Simply God is simply bad.


(Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher, for review purposes. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”)


  1. Dave KnickerbockerFebruary 2, 2012 at 9:43 AM

    Ouch. Are you opposed to self-publishing in all cases? If not, what is the best scenario for someone to self-publish?

  2. Thanks for the comment, Dave. No, I'm not at all opposed to self-publishing. There are some good reasons to self-publish: if you have a billion-member church, if you're a self-marketing wizard, if your book has niche appeal but is otherwise strong, etc. AND many subsidy publishers do a great job with designing, editing, packaging, etc. Too many of us, however, see self-publishing as a shortcut, and it's not.

    1. Dave KnickerbockerFebruary 3, 2012 at 8:47 AM

      Thanks, Bob. I'd better get started on that billion member church!