[Bowen] meticulously deconstructs the elitist veil of feminism and honors Black women from the hood with long nails, loud voices, and tough exteriors. Bowen writes from an authentic space for Black women who are often left out of feminist conversations due to respectability politics, but who are just as deserving of the same voice and liberation ... Through personal essays, Bowen dissects the complexities of dealing with fat phobia, queerness, owning one’s sexuality, and the importance of friendship. She doesn’t shy away from the tough experiences ... Bowen’s insight empowers the unapologetic women who culture loves to emulate and highlights the inspiration behind some of hip-hop’s most memorable songs.
Bold and winning ... Blending cultural analysis and memoir, Bowen explains why being a shoplifter able to code-switch 'in a way that could both impress and disarm white folks' was an expression of power ... Throughout, Bowen uplifts 'the resilience, defiance, and attitudes of Black girls,' while pointing out the 'racial microaggressions' of mainstream, majority white feminist groups such as Planned Parenthood. This is a powerful call for a more inclusive and 'real' feminism.
This colloquial debut weaves memoir with cultural studies to illuminate genuine stories of surviving and thriving—and necessary lessons in between ... Frankness sets the tone for the book ... Bowen’s writing will appeal to readers undeterred by profanity who are interested in both contemporary hip-hop and feminist autobiographies ... Direct, driven, occasionally dirty, and undeniably fresh.