I've had the book, Bling, for some time now, maybe one or two years, but I had never really gotten around to reading it. Call it forgetfulness, or having other things to read more important, or the 500 pages of discouragement, I just never got around to it. However, do to a lack of any good new fiction I wanted to read, I went to my old book shelve and pulled this new to me, gem out.
In this book Erica Kennedy, takes us on an inside look, of the under goings, of the music industry, and the true makings of a star. I found it to be loosely based on several recognizable persona's, and music personalities. From the main character, the Mariah-esque, Mimi Jean, to the Tommy Mattola/P.Diddy-ish, playboy Lamont Jackson, the president of hip hop label Triple Large Entertainment. Lamont Jackson is desperate to become the head of Augusta Music (Arista), now that Irv Greene (Clive Davis) is being pushed out to early retirement. So he needs a dynamic female singer to soften his rapper line-up and push him to the head of the list, which brings us to the main character Mimi. If you don't see some of the blatant similarities, than you must have your head in the sand.
The book takes us on the up rise of, Mimi the small town biracial, twenty year old, vocal power house, who is brought to New York, and molded into a super star. Lamont meticulously guilds his protege`, in every detail from what she sings, to where she appears and appears with, to what she wears, to even how her hair is styled. He enlists her newly appointed best friends, Former Super model Vanessa de LaCruz, and Socialite Party-girl Lena Whitaker (perhaps a more black Nicole Richie like), to help in his world-wind makeover. While using her to help create a broader music spectrum, he falls for her and takes us on the ride of the boss turned lover roller coaster. It's that typical what is the price of fame, and the upside and downside of becoming a star, and losing yourself...blah blah blah.
Erica Kennedy, a former entertainment reporter, in my opinion did a bang up job, on showing us the inside of the music industry, hip-hop or not. We are shown the glamorous and gritty side of the industry, from the glitz of the business to the financial benefits and downfall of it all. I really felt I was shown a light to it all.
I did assume that with like over 400, going on 500 pages, that this book would have a lot of down and more event less parts, however I was never bored. There was always some sort of spicy going on. Although, there was many characters to keep up with, and there back story. Like the rapper line-up, to some of Lamont's right hand men, to his rivals like Gambino (Irv. Gotti) head of Hitz, Inc. (Murder Inc.) and his music crew. I chopped that up to what the actual industry is like. There is a lot of people and things, that go into the music celebrities, that we are familiar with. There is more that goes into making a star, than just them recording an album, and making a video. This book gives you a funny and interersting view and shows you what and how, to it all.
I give it a recommend!