I Am the New Black Hardcover – 20 Oct 2009
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Top Customer Reviews
While it isn't the most well written of biographical book it certainly is the most frank and entertaining. It's an interesting insight into the world of 90's black comedy.
While it is quite short it is the perfect length for what it is.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
As a result, there has been no rhyme or reason to his life or his life story. And since there is no rhyme or reason to them, there also is little left for the reader to hold on to here. His life lessons, though at times seemingly very wise and hard-earned, in the end ring hollow because his actions throughout his life have invariably countermand them: even at forty, he remains a random variable, bouncing like a pinball from one side of life to another, on his way back to the inevitable black hole waiting for us all. We know that just around the corner, there will be more trouble for Tracy Morgan, the black man with a lot of bass in his voice, and the comedian, father, and actor extraordinaire.
In this self-absorbed tabloid like expose, Morgan gives us way more than we bargained for, or needed to hear from him (His brown bomb in the swimming pool for instance. Or that his brother may have contracted meningitis by playing in the toilet bowl?). His unvarnished honesty is used like a Samurai sword, as he commits psychological Harikari by swishing his way through the first forty years of a "rags to riches" success story. And although he unmistakably is one of only a handful of our most talented comedians, this book reveals that his bright shining star is rapidly burning out and that despite this, he still remains full of himself and self-absorbed in an immature way that leaves the reader saying as my Uncle Nath used to say: "He's slick, but he still needs another greasing."
Morgan has been lucky in love, in life and in his chosen profession, which he remains committed to; and that is all to the good. However, he himself admits that he has already burned up eight of his nine lives and with many complications of advanced diabetes, he cannot fail to realize that he is undoubtedly living on borrowed time. At a time when he needs to be taking stock and getting his house in order for the final existential ride, Hollywood has so gotten into his bloodstream that I fear there is no cure for this very bright black man who has a lot to say, and has a lot left to do. Still it is a very good read. Four Stars
For Tracy's memoir however, I read the opening, and was pleasantly quite surprised. That intro was that fabulous. He's humble, but hungry. 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...
This made for a very engaging, easy read I highly recommend. Very well done!