An Immigrant's Story

Book - 2012
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Touching on themes of poverty, immigration, father/son relationships, and fame, a musician, producer, and actor details his childhood growing up in Haiti and Newark, and gives the inside story on the hip hop group The Fugees.
Publisher: New York : It Books, c2012
Description: xxxiv, 250 p., [8] p. of plates : ill. (some col.) ; 24 cm
ISBN: 9780061966866
Branch Call Number: 782.421649 Jea
Additional Contributors: Bozza, Anthony.


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Jul 03, 2018

I randomly picked up Wyclef's memoir during a trip to the library a few weeks ago. It was on display for Black Music Month; and based on the synopsis, I decided to borrow it. And to be honest, I wasn't impressed.

This book had so much potential but it was poorly organized and it didn't flow. I couldn't follow the timeline of the events that happened in his life because the story was all over the place and was redundant in several places. I did however, enjoy reading about how The Fugees got started and the events leading up to their disbandment. His chapters about their rise to fame had me reminiscing about their songs and I ended up playing a few tracks from their album, The Score while I read his book.

I was also annoyed by Wyclef's perspective about his role in some of the unfortunate situations that he put himself in. It felt like he was trying to convince his readers and himself that some of the poor choices and decisions that he made were justified. Given the fact that his actions directly impacted other people, I wish he would've avoided taking the whole "I had no real choice in the matter" position. But at the end of the day, this is his memoir; not mine.

Mar 07, 2013

An honest and funny insight into the extraordinary life of a unique musician. Reading about his relationship with his Father makes the song Daddy all the more meaningful on a fresh listen. Anyone with an interest in The Fugees, Wyclef or music should give this book a read. Brilliant!

ChristchurchLib Nov 14, 2012

How did a baby born in a Haitian slum grow up to be a hip-hop star in the U.S. before running for the Haitian presidency in the wake of the country's horrific 2010 earthquake? For Wyclef Jean, learning how to rap helped him with his English, while his expanding association with East Coast rappers put him in the right place at the right time when the group that eventually became the Fugees hit it big. Though he covers topics from the Fugees' success to his relationship with Lauryn Hill to his efforts to help the Haitian people, his focus is always on his goal to live life with purpose, and this energy is apparent throughout his memoir.

Review in Next Reads Popular Culture newsletter November 2012 http://www.nextreads.com/Display2.aspx?SID=5acc8fc1-4e91-4ebe-906d-f8fc5e82a8e0&N=568377

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