By: Amber Wilder
As someone that has only heard about Awkward Black Girl in passing and never got around to watching it – the book gives an insight into what you’re missing. I primarily watched Youtube to watch music and lyric videos but did not experience the comedic side until later on.
I know Issa Rae from her hit show Insecure on HBO and loosely follow her career. I admit that I root for her from the back of the room as I still have not gotten around to watching her series on Youtube or her show on HBO. When I picked up the book, I wanted to show my support and actually read it. While reading, I have identified and placed myself and others in some of the categories in some of the chapters, ie. “ABG Guide: Public Grazing”, “ABG Guide: Connecting with Other Blacks”, and “ABG Guide: The Hair Advantage”.
The story that Issa Rae weaves through use of her life experiences is relatable to the utmost degree, for me at least. Some of the situations I laugh out loud with a notion of “me too, girl” and others have you wincing and wishing that perhaps that situation did not happen but then it would not be called The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl would it? I love that Issa Rae connects all of the stories that she pens with anecdotes of self-realization and when she started or had the brainchild of a particular project. I thoroughly loved seeing the progress and evolution of this amazing woman.
A particular part that stands out significantly to me is at the end of the chapter “New York, NY” where she questions what is holding her in New York. It encouraged me to self-reflect about why we choose to stay in situations, places, etc. that do absolutely nothing for us but for some odd reason, we are bound and compelled to stay. If that thing is doing nothing for you, it might be best to leave it where it is and move on.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and find that I will continually come back to it especially to remind myself that someone continued to follow her dreams and “made it”. She created something organic that a lot of us can relate to – being awkward and black.