This book review is about human nature. Human nature fascinates me. I get my fix from reading. I’ve been an avid reader all of my life. As a child, I would take a bag with me to the library so that I could carry all of my books home comfortably. When I exhausted the small public library downstairs I opened the phone book and began to take walks to the surrounding branches.

If I were to return to school I think I would study cultural anthropology (the branch of anthropology concerned with the study of human societies and cultures and their development). In the meantime, I’ll keep on reading.

In a recent blog post by Michael Hyatt, he discussed how you can make reading non-fiction more productive. Inspired by his post, I immediately put his Book InSIGHTS™ format to work with my latest non-fiction read. InSIGHTS™ stands for IN – Information, Summary, Insights, Glitches, Holes, Takeaways, and Snippet.

This book review is a resource I look forward sharing with you regularly. I want you to use it to help you find new reading material and get a peek inside of my world.

Book review selection

As I stated, human nature fascinates me. Like many of you, I was caught up in the New Edition bio-pic on BET. Learning about the group members, their challenges, differences, and triumphs made me want to know more. This curiosity led me to Bobby Brown’s interviews on YouTube and subsequently his book.

  • Title: Every Little Step: My Story
  • Authors: Bobby Brown, Nick Chiles
  • Publisher: Harper Collins
  • Publication Date: June 13, 2016
  • Pages: 336
  • My personal rating: 4.5 /5 Stars
  • Summary.
    • In this book, Bobby Brown tells us the story of his life through his eyes. He starts in childhood and leaves nothing out taking us into adulthood. He attempts to show the reader that he is more than his image and he isn’t a villain. The reader gets to experience his journey “no holds barred”  and no conversation is off limits. It’s clear that he has some regrets in life and that he doesn’t want children or anyone else to make the same mistakes he made.
  • Insights.
    • Society puts its celebrities on a pedestal, neglecting to consider that they are human beings, or perhaps not caring. They are treated and packaged like goods, groomed and marketed to fit into images that generate dollars.
    • Being able to hear Bobby Brown’s voice was insightful, including the words spoken about him by his family and friends. On page 179 Bobby states that he had a complete lack of self-awareness when he was high. That lack of self-awareness is evident when you hear his children’s stories about specific choices Bobby made, situations that occurred, and how they were impacted. Despite the challenges in their lives, however,  you can clearly see the love between Bobby and his children.
  • Glitches.
    • There are a lot of stories about Bobby’s sexual conquests. More than I felt I needed to know. In trying to see the bigger picture I assumed he was attempting to be transparent with his revelations. He did a bit of name dropping which I didn’t think was cool. I wondered if the sexual behavior was his way of masking other issues in his life by filling a void with women. In the book, Bobby himself questions whether his behavior was linked to some inappropriate situations that occurred during childhood.
  • Holes.
    • I enjoy stories that flow smoothly and don’t feel choppy. In the beginning, I felt that this story was choppy. It was written well, in terms of language, but it felt like someone sitting down and just telling a whole bunch of stories which then had to be fused together. I didn’t feel like the fusion was always seamless.
  • Takeaways.
    • Instead of worrying about what you can’t do, you should focus on crafting your gifts and building your own unique brand. Don’t focus on your weaknesses, focus on your strengths. Bobby Brown said, “he was intimidated when he had to sing Something In Common with Whitney.” He never considered himself the best singer. He knew he could hold a tune, and he knew he could dance and entertain a crowd so he put them together and created something special. Whitney then taught him how to use his voice and improve his skills.
    • Hard work. Regardless of what Bobby wasn’t doing right in his personal life, he still had a strong work ethic. Hard work was instilled in him at a young age while a member of New Edition and it stayed with him as a father. In order to be the best, you have to give your best.
  • Snippet.
    • “With the two of us working together, sharing our strengths, I think we made each other better entertainers.” P157
    • “…if you keep dabbling, you’re going to get hooked.” P175
    • “And to the little boy in the tree, who’s never given up on dreaming big.”

Question? None of us are perfect. When in your life did you fall so hard that getting up saved it?

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