(5 / 5) – It Completes Me!
Essay compilations are a genre of writing I have found myself more and more drawn towards in the last ten years. As an early reader and an adult bibliophile, essays collections didn’t impact my reading life much, but as the essay form has had a bit of a resurgence, I have found myself reading and enjoying them more and more.
Tarana Burke and Brene Brown’s collaboration “You Are Your Best Thing” is one such gem of a compilation and one I would highly recommend for everyone. Through the form of the personal essay, the reader is offered a glimpse into the hurt, wounds, pain and generational trauma carried by key voices in the Black community. Through a variety of experiences, stories and reflections any monolithic thinking one may have regarding the Black experience in America is broken and the diversity and uniqueness along with the daily trauma and tension is exposed through beautiful storytelling and exposition.
I read this book a second time for a book club and it was wonderful to see how the different essays hit the different readers depending on personalities and life experience. In its totality the book was wonderfully received and then each reader had a few essays that spoke deeply to them, were revelatory and a few they just didn’t connect to at all. It was different for everyone and it led to some incredible discussion and I would say a new level of vulnerability within the book club membership as well.
A book that deserves to be read, absorbed and reread.