My Infamous Life The Autobiography of Mobb Deeps' Prodigy
Albert “Prodigy” Johnson with Laura Checkoway
Touchstone, Apr 19 2011, $24.99
This is an insightful autobiography that hooks the audience from the Introduction as Prodigy in a prison four hours from the city realizes he is just another inmate though a celebrity. From there Prodigy explains his family roots changed from musical affluence to the Queensborough projects where violent crime is the norm. For instance, Prodigy, who suffers from Sickle Cell Anemia, admits he committed a robbery to insure he met the code of high school which reminded me of the 1950s Blackboard Jungle by Evan Hunter. His family also knew crime first hand when his aunt a bartender was shot in Queens. When he became a famous rapper, blood money and drugs eventually led to prison. There he found out who his true friends are.
This is a timely fabulous memoir as Albert Johnson pulls no punches with his insightful look at his “infamous life” and at the civil war era of Hip Hop. Profound throughout Mr. Johnson lays bare his guts of thriving and dying in the concrete jungle of New York. Although too frequent use of the first person "I" pronoun at the start of sentences (even for an autobiography) feels a bit disjointing, readers will appreciate the honesty that Mr. Johnson provides in this deep gripping introspective memoir.