“Books with Bianca” is a new column that will feature my personal book recommendations in hopes of getting students to read more than their “required readings,” whenever time allows them to do so!
Actress, stand-up comedian, and break-out star of “Girls Trip,” Tiffany Haddish writes, “I look back over my life and I’m like, ‘For real, that happened?’” Revealing some of her most personal (and maybe a little too detailed) life-experiences in her memoir, “The Last Black Unicorn,” these anecdotes are truly versatile.
Ranging from heartbreaking to hilarious, each chapter, no matter how tear-jerking or funny, revolves around one idea: survival. Haddish, who grew up in the foster care system in one of the poorest areas of Los Angeles, could not read until she was in ninth grade. She then ended up in a violent marriage for a few years, and when she entered Hollywood she still saw herself as the broke girl from the wrong side of the tracks.
Haddish’s tough, yet big-hearted personality helped her survive the toughest situations. When her mother physically abused her, she could have caused a scene or even ended her relationship right then and there. Yet, she stuck around; she understood her mother’s mental illness meant she needed to be around her. Her complex relationship makes the audience question how far we will go in our lives to protect the ones we love, even if their reciprocated love isn’t obvious.
Another admirable trait of this book is that it feels as though Haddish is having a conversation with you. While reading, I imagined I was at my local taqueria, sharing food with Haddish as she talked about her life and all the stories that shaped her. The intimate tone of the book makes you feel welcomed into every corner of Haddish’s world, and as you explore the dark times, and the comedic consequences that occur, you feel comfortable enough to laugh or shed a tear with her.
Her memoir shows she pushed through every obstacle to be where she is today. It is filled with heart and humor because Haddish can’t avoid being funny even in the face of life’s toughest challenges. Overall, I invite everyone to read her book at least once in 2018. As Haddish writes, “I’m inviting you to read it, because I never want you to say I didn’t invite you to nothing!”