Ladies First: Revelations of a Strong Woman
|Title:||Ladies First: Revelations of a Strong Woman|
|Publisher:||Perennial Currents, New York|
From Publishers Weekly "Queen Latifah is perhaps rap's most recognizable female artist, having parlayed a successful music career into several high-profile film and television roles. Part of her appeal stems from her relatively unique image, one that eschews spandex and innuendo for a tougher, earthier confidence. Less an autobiography than a motivational tract, this book attempts to impart the philosophy behind Latifah's image and, in so doing, "let every woman know that she, too... is royalty." She does this by basing the narrative loosely around some of the major events in her life: her parents' divorce, her experiences growing up in inner-city Newark, her initial forays into the rap scene and her brother's death in a motorcycle accident at the age of 24. Also included are Latifah's views on drug use, God, romance and sex. Her personal recollections, while frank and heartfelt, serve mainly as touchstones for aphoristic observations on self-esteem and faith; the text is peppered with assertions such as "It's harder to feel bad with your head held high" and "The key is not to rule others but to reign over yourself." While the goal here is inspiration rather than revelation, fans may feel cheated by what's left out. No insights are offered regarding Latifah's music career, creative process or her decision to move into acting; her star-making lead role on the television series Living Single is covered in half a sentence. Ultimately, however, Latifah's positive "be yourself" attitude is infectious, and readers are bound to come away from this book wanting at least a little bit to be like Latifah.
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