"If you can write, that's great. If you can tell a story, that's even greater. But if you can work a resilient premise into both, you're worth digging to find."

Saturday, December 1, 2012

I Am the New Black by Tracy Morgan

It's rare that I read books all in one day. The pacing has to be fierce for me to accomplish this, so hats off to the editor for getting this one in print. Sounds just like Tracy talked right into a mic telling his story, and how it was for him, and how he sees things. He's humble, but hungry.

This memoir grew on me the moment I opened the book, in which the thing here is, I don't ordinarily read prologues or openings. If the book is really good, then I'll go back to read the forward, and epilogue, and even acknowledgements and indexes, if any. But not starting out. 

For Tracy's memoir however, I read the opening and was pleasantly quite surprised. That intro was that fabulous. Still, I braced myself for a rough read…despite it already being clarified in the intro that I likely wouldn't be among the sect surprised by the contents of his story. Turned out, the intro was on point. I didn't need to brace myself at all.

I like the way he repeats himself... it's one of the ways I can hear his voice, along with those call-outs he shouts out intermittingly... as in "what's up Marci? I love you, girl!" But what I really loved, and appreciated, were the props he gives to the trailblazers who've inspired his career. Redd, Richard, Eddie, Martin, and later so many others (Bernie Mac, Cedric the Entertainer...) to now include the props he gives himself; my all-time favorite comedians. 

His honesty is another tangible treat, even at the corollary of having to deal with some of the rawness surfacing from bodies like Chico. Let me put it this way, before this book I didn't know Tracy Morgan. And that's not only because I haven't watched TV or movies in years. It's because it would take reading this book to really get to know him; that being (of course) if you aren't Tina Fey...

Very engaging, easy read highly recommended. Very well done! 

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