Amy's Reviews > Decoded
This book is really more like a scrapbook, or a book to entice teenagers who hate reading to read. Lots of pictures, often pages with large print for style. Jay-Z talks about his beginnings in the Marcy Projects and his first career as a crack dealer. He continues his life story about breaking into the rap business and his life now (all though Beyonce is noticeably missing from this tale. She is only mentioned in passing once. However, it seems really smart to keep a high profile romance out of a "tell-all" type memoir). I liked reading the anecdotes and even appreciated Jay-Z's philosophical musings on politics, media, language, celebrity, and the music industry. The aspect of this book that I couldn't get into (and often found myself skipping over) was the detailed breakdown of lyrics from a dozen or so songs. It reads like a cheat-sheet for Black slang and iconography, and really I don't want to read dissection of lyrics. If anything the beauty in lyrics is usually how ambiguous they can be to allow multiple interpretations for broader appeal and resonance. After skimming over the lyric sections, there isn't a lot of book left, but the narrative that remains is still a worthwhile read.
Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read Decoded.sign in »