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I Am the New Black

3.13  ·  Rating details ·  999 Ratings  ·  165 Reviews
The outrageously funny, heartbreaking, and surprising story of Tracy Morgan's rise from ghetto wiseass to superstar comedian.

Who is Tracy Morgan? The wildly unpredictable funnyman who rocketed to fame on Saturday Night Live? The Emmy-nominated actor behind the sly and ingenious character Tracy Jordan on the award-winning hit sitcom 30 Rock, whose turbulent personal life of
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Audio CD, Abridged, 0 pages
Published October 20th 2009 by Random House Audio (first published 2009)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Fabian
Jul 22, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not written well at all, it remains a delectable anecdotal treat.

The comedian bares his soul; he's overly confident & suave. Nothing less to be expected from this SNL alum. And, although it is tremendously redundant in parts, a bit repetitive, it IS vulnerable, even (gasp!) heartbreaking.
Darth J
Apr 01, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I went into this book with lower expectations and was pleasantly surprised at how well-written this was. That could have been due to a ghost writer helping Morgan (which was probably the case, because come on).

This was at times funny and at others, hilarious. Tracy gets to some dark stuff in his memoir, but never in that "manipulating the audience by revealing tragedy in order to get a sympathy award" kind of way. He laughs through it and moves forward, which should be the ultimate take away fr
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Naksed
Apr 13, 2017 rated it liked it
I am not a big, big fan of Tracy Morgan. I have not watched a single episode of 30 Rock (yup, you can get out your pitchforks and run after me, I deserve it) nor have I ever watched his stand-up BUT I do love Saturday Night Live and I have always enjoyed reading behind-the-scenes stuff about this iconic TV show and pop culture phenomenon.

Disappointingly, Morgan glosses over his stint at SNL, and aside from some pretty rude comments about castmates Cheri Oteri and Chris Kattan, what he shared abo
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Daniel
Sep 08, 2011 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Tracy Morgan super-fans, not merely Tracy Morgan comedy appreciators
I was totally blindsided by Tracy Morgan's I Am the New Black. I took a look at his goofy face and exposed belly on the cover, dressed in an expensive suit jacket and tie with bunny ears, with the ridiculous title and the name written enormous in golden lights above, and thought: This is going to be hilarious. Maybe he'd even write it in character as Tracy Jordan from 30 Rock!

I feel bad for saying that I was disappointed to see that this was not the case. Why not have a serious autobiography of
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Vannessa Anderson
Tracey Morgan’s I Am The New Black is one of the most honest and telling memoirs I’ve read this year!

Mr. Morgan takes us through a life of peril to a life of luxury never knowing how good his life had become until he lost his family to booze and partying. It took his hitting rock bottom to realize until he changed his former neighborhood mentality, mindset, to one of a successful businessman who made it out of the world of drugs, gangs, hopelessness, and people who blamed their defeatist attitu
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Benjamin
The good: Tracy Morgan is undeniably hilarious, and I liked him before he was cool. Brian Fellow? Hysterical. Astronaut Jones? Classic. Tracy Jordan? Marvelous. This book was a great insight into the background of what he calls 'the funny'. Most of the anecdotes from his childhood in the ghettos of New York are disturbing, some are funny, but they are all captivating. A should-read for any fan of Morgans.

The not-so-good: I always thought that a co-writer's job on a celebrity autobiography was to
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Stephen
Nov 21, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've read quite a few celebrity autobiographies and this is one of the better ones. Here's why.

Look at Scar Tissue by Anthony Kiedis. Kiedis spends most of his book detailing EVERY SINGLE drug deal he ever took part in. And if that's not enough, he, for some reason, feels the need to tell us whenever he got laid. The whole book, the guy's doing drugs, buying drugs and having sex. It's over 400 pages long and he barely gets in anything about the Red Hot Chili Peppers' music. That's why I read the
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John
Aug 14, 2010 rated it really liked it
I have a feeling this would be three or even two stars, had I read this instead of listing to it as an audio CD. Tracy Morgan is a rambler, and he jumps all over the place in time. He repeats himself and goes on and on sometimes when he should be getting back to some kind of narrative structure. But listening to it, I could always be doing something else too, so I would just tune it out when he was rambling and then pay attention again when he was back to a good story or being funny. And he is p ...more
Renee
Sep 28, 2011 rated it did not like it
I listened to the audio version of this book, and although Morgan’s story of rags to riches is somewhat interesting and inspiring, that is about all this book has.

Listening to him orate and his inability to talk in complete sentences with some mode of fifth-grade articulation was downright pitiful. If one knew nothing of Tracy Morgan, one would never know he was a comedian. Other than Morgan shouting “I am BIG funny” numerous times throughout the book, and comparing himself to comedy legends Red
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Lee Anne
This book was co(ghost)written by Anthony Bozza, who also co(ghost)wrote Artie Lange's Too Fat to Fish, and it has more than a few similarities. Both men had fathers who died young; both men have overcome (or tried to, in Artie's case) addictions; both books are written by comedians, but are sentimental more than they are funny.

Tracy Morgan is one of the funniest people out there right now, but this book made me laugh out loud exactly once. That isn't to say it's a bad book, but if you're expec
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Norb Aikin
Mar 20, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting read...not real heavy or anything, and not really full of earth-shattering revelations or juicy Hollywood gossip. The real disappointment comes to the reader if he or she chooses to try and read it in Morgan's voice...it feels like Anthony Bozza too often took out or cleaned up a lot of Morgan's delivery and storytelling. It'd be fascinating to hear this being read by Morgan himself, with his vocal inflections coloring the passages. Overall, a nice tale of someone overcoming some unf ...more
Dora
Jan 23, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book probably gets so many stars because I expected very little of it, and instead I was really moved and drawn in. Morgan's bio is much more thought-provoking than it seems on the surface. He (or possibly his ghostwriter) is able to tell a compelling story about his childhood and his life as a performer, creating a story arc weaving them together. Things mentioned in the very beginning become a part of his professional life.

In particular I was moved by the parallels between his relationshi
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Douglass
Jul 10, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I've been on an audio book kick lately...so this review is for the audio book version of "I Am the New Black".

Having said this, I'm not sure how the printed version would read. The audio book is read by Tracy Morgan...but I can't tell if he's actually reading the text or sort of free-form-ad-libbing. It comes across as if he's sitting across from you kind of rambling about his life. The audio book comes across as being fairly disjointed as a result.

It's interesting, I guess...sort of in the way
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Frank
Jan 07, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
What do you expect from a book whose author's name is twelve times bigger than the title?? The ghostwriter for Mr. Morgan seems to just be transcribing interviews with Tracy - four letter's and all! Man! I left that S#@t! in high school! As to the rest of the book, it does offer some insight and opinions about fellow SNL members and some inkling of the process,
but gets repetitive towards the latter part of the book. Overall, not bad, but the ghost writer has also produced articles for Rolling St
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Meghan
Oct 14, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Unfortunately, this wasn't as funny as I had hoped and definitely didn't offer much in the way of "behind the scenes" SNL information. Morgan and his ghostwriter put forth a positive tale of hard work and hardship, but there is so much repetition and so many tired analogies that it got old. Despite the mediocrity of the writing, I can see a lot of teens and young adults, especially in the African American community wanting to pick this title up at the library.
Mike
Oct 20, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you are a Tracy Morgan fan, you will enjoy this sometimes silly, sometimes tragic, and yes, loopy account of where he came from and what he believes in. In particular, I recommend the audio book which he narrates with all of the passion and all of the joy that come with his somewhat sideways way of looking at the world.
Kelli
Feb 18, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tracey Morgan is surprisingly coherent and calm throughout the telling of his life story. He recalls his early life in poverty in a matter-of-fact way and I doubt any of the stories are exaggerated for effect.
Shà
May 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
he is honest, real, and he told it like it was
i enjoyed it because i am a fan of his
more entertainers need to be honest and tell it like it is and more people will respect them
thank you tracy morgan for sharing and ill always be a fan
Brooke Everett
Jan 22, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
30 Rock is my favorite TV show of all time. Also, whose voice is more fun to have in your head while reading than Tracy Morgan's? Those two elements combined made this book an absolute pleasure to breeze through over a weekend. His story of overcoming obstacles is pretty inspiring, too...he's really a humble and grateful dude.

I knew it...I knew Tracy had lizards and such as pets in real life, too.
"Now there's a chance he may call tomorrow because it's his lizard's birthday."
-------

"There are two
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Samantha Glasser
Tracy Morgan is a comedian best known for his stints on SNL and 30 Rock. He has a loud, larger-than-life personality that doesn't appeal to everyone, but I have always thought he was funny. I expected this book to be a breezy read, mostly concerning his life in the spotlight but also highlighting his up-bringing. Boy was I wrong.

For someone who makes people laugh for a living, Morgan had it hard, and the bulk of this book is about his difficulties and what he learned from them. The great thing
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RYCJ
Oct 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: my-keepers
This memoir grew on me the moment I opened the book, in which the thing here is, I don't ordinarily read prologues or openings. If the book is really good, then I'll go back to read the forward, and epilogue, and even acknowledgements and indexes, if any. But not starting out.

For Tracy's memoir however, I read the opening, and was pleasantly quite surprised. That intro was that fabulous. He's humble, but hungry. Still, I braced myself for a rough read…despite it already being clarified in the i
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Lars
Jun 09, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Oof, this book. I listened to the audiobook, so that could be part of the issue, but I don't think it is.

Tracy Morgan is truly unflinching as he looks at his background and his life. It seems to be a basically unvarnished account of where he came from and the forces that created him.

Reading such an account is intense, but unfortunately it's not especially interesting or entertaining. The jokes here don't really work, and he jumps between topics so quickly that it's tough to get too invested in
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Nancy
Oct 28, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was interesting.
At times it was inspiring (he definitely worked his way from ghetto to stage) and other times just annoying (all the "praise God" stuff at the end).
I often times found myself reading along to Tracy's actual voice in my head - that made parts of it more readable. I'm not a literary snob by any stretch of the imagination, but this book was very poorly written. His use of the word "motherfucker" was really out of my comfort zone (he would say that's because I'm white) bu
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Christa
The rating would've been lower if I'd read the actual book instead of listening to the audiobook (which Morgan reads himself). Listening to it, it seemed like a lot of ad-libbing or GREAT acting on Morgan's part -- it felt more like I was listening to a one-sided interview or a Podcast about himself because of the conversational tone of it. He was also emotional: he laughed at parts, and there were parts where it sounded like he was crying.

Of the content itself, Morgan's life has been a tumultuo
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Derrick
May 03, 2013 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this audio book. I have no idea how it would play out as a written book, but in Tracy's voice it felt so authentic. He is truly a blessed comedian. It was interesting that when he made bad choices in his life, he claims he could feel it and eventually get away from it. Such as his drug dealing that was not in his or his family's character, the baby that wasn't his that he raised anyway due to the issues he had with his father, and the ass of Chico Divine that he now has to bury ...more
Kate
Dec 16, 2010 rated it it was ok
Can't imagine picking up the hard copy - Tracy was made for audiobook.

I would kind of like to know if the book has anything the CDs don't. Because certainly you don't get the same hauntingly cool experience of listening to Tracy's late father's original recorded songs by reading the book. Are there like, family photos?

Yes, there has been a lot of oversharing and stories of hard times. I'm 1/2 the way through and he has already identified his personal hero as three different people. That's cool.
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J
(FROM JACKET)Who is Tracy Morgan? The wildly unpredictable funnyman who rocketed to fame on "Saturday Night Live"? The emmy-nominated actor behind the sly and ingenious character Tracy Jordan on the award-winning sitcom "30 Rock", whose turbulent personal life often mirrors that of his fictional alter ego? Is he Chico Divine, the life of the party-any party, anytime, anywhere-getting ladies pregnant eveywhere he goes? Or is he a soulful, tender family man who emerged from a hardscrabble ghetto u ...more
Heather
Tracy does A LOT of over-sharing, but if you imagine it as him actually reading it to you, it is far more enjoyable.

One big problem I have, is that it seems a little pre-mature for him to do a book like this. 30 Rock is only a few seasons in and his first headlining movie with Bruce Willis is about to drop. That said, there really isn't much to this story (thus the wide spacing and larger font).

Another problem is the flow of the story. Tracy has had a hell of a life, but if I had edited the bo
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Chezon
Oct 28, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Tracy Morgan fans
The audiobook is "read" by him. It's very apparent that he isn't reading the book verbatim (I do believe he reads the introduction), but I think his personality shines when he's just speaking from the heart. I laughed out loud in a lot of this. But in length, it just wasn't enough. I'm contemplating actually reading the book, but I'm not sold on doing that, because what I love most about Tracy Morgan is the way he expresses himself. That's the reason why I waited for the audiobook rather than ju ...more
Snem
Sep 11, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: signed-books
It's always interesting to me to read about the lives of comedians because many times it's anything but funny. He offers some pretty good advice in here. He seemed genuinely appreciative to Lorne Michaels and Tina Fey. This really isn't all that funny a book, he seemed to focus a lot on the awards 30 Rock has won as his only measure of success, he seemed to forget that Tim Meadows was also on SNL around the same time as him and is also black. This book also jumps around a lot and seemed scatterb ...more
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Tracy Morgan is an American actor and comedian, best known for his work on the TV series Saturday Night Live and 30 Rock on which he plays Tracy Jordan. (I'm just kidding Tracy!)
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