The Pretty One by Keah Brown

The Pretty One

From the disability rights advocate and creator of the #DisabledAndCute viral campaign, a thoughtful, inspiring, and charming collection of essays exploring what it means to be black and disabled in a mostly able-bodied white America. Keah Brown loves herself, but that hadn’t always been the case. Born with cerebral palsy, her greatest desire used to be normalcy and refuge from the steady stream of self-hate society strengthened inside her. But...

Details The Pretty One

TitleThe Pretty One
Release DateAug 6th, 2019
PublisherAtria Books
GenreNonfiction, Writing, Essays, Autobiography, Memoir, Disability, Cultural, African American

Reviews The Pretty One

  • Roxane
    What does it mean to live at the intersections of blackness, womanhood, and disability? In her admirable debut, The Pretty One, Keah Brown answers this question with heart, charm, and humor. Across twelve finely crafted essays, Brown explores the matter of representation in popular culture, the vulnerability of facing self-loathing and learning to love herself, the challenge of repairing fractured relationships with family, the yearning for roman...
  • Suzanna
    This was a great read! She writes honestly - and hilariously - about being a black woman with cerebral palsy. It was refreshing to have a different point of view, but also relatable in the things she shared that she has struggled with. She is a delightful writer, I hope she writes more!
  • Kelly Hager
    I initially accepted the pitch for this because I am obsessed with all things pop culture and because this is a voice that I don't really hear that often. (I read books about and by Black authors, but I don't know off the top of my head how many books by disabled authors I've read. Which means I don't read enough of them. I would like recommendations.)I'm so glad I did. Keah Brown and I have a lot of pop culture in common and I got almost all of ...
  • Katie Tamola
    I can’t say enough good things about this memoir and about Keah Brown. I was so excited to read this and she did not disappoint. Heartfelt and funny, this is one of those books that feels like a best friend. I’m excited to be sharing this one with my friends!
  • Jennifer
    Keah Brown changed my life. Well, that may be a bit dramatic, but her memoir The Pretty One completely transformed my perspective on disability from a narrative of brokenness in need of fixing to a theology of a purposeful state of being. “Disability is not monolithic...we should be seen as human beings with our own autonomy.” The Pretty One held the mirror up to my own biases and introduced me to ableist discrimination, a distorted sense of ...
  • jo
    In disability and race activism there is a very important place for rage. Keah Brown shows us that there is also a place for youth and playfulness. Brown is as clear-eyed about the nuances of many-fronted discrimination as any disability/race/gender intersectional activist. She is also aware of the injuries her life has inflicted on herself and her relationships. But she makes the political choice to tackle this pain and ugliness with cuteness. W...
  • Never Without a Book™
    Born with cerebral palsy and the creator of the viral hashtag #DisabledAndCute, Keah Brown is not one to let her disability slow her down. In her debut collection of essays, The Pretty One, Brown tells her story of what’s it like to be Black and disabled. This read was truly an experience outside of my own. I laughed, cried and couldn’t get enough of Brown’s positivity and determination. I am so happy this book exists. This is a must read! ...
  • Morgan Schulman
    I received an advanced readers copy in exchange for an honest review. This is exactly the book we need right now. Not only does it inform and challenge stigma against people with disabilities, it is a meaningful story of the author’s journey to see herself as cute AND disabled. In a world that does not always love us, we need to love ourselves. We need to celebrate our own beauty in order to have the strength to fight the world’s ugly
  • Bookaholic
    This is a tough book to rate. On one hand, this is such an important topic that it should be explored by everyone. If I could, I’d give this book to entire communities of people for free. I’d translate it in every language. I’d make it a mandatory reading in schools.The author is a beautiful person not only on the inside but also on the outside. We definitely need more role models like her in this inhospitable and judgmental world. There ar...
  • 2TReads
    These essays were a joy to read. You can feel the author's authenticity and spirit on every page. Ms. Brown does not shy away from showing us her inner most thoughts and experiences as a black, disabled woman who does not let her disability define her as a person. She takes us through the experiences that have had the most impact on her life, and have helped her develop her most authentic self.I especially loved her use of literary devices such a...
  • Jade
    I wrote a long, rambling review of my thoughts while reading The Pretty One by Keah Brown, and then I realized I was just paraphrasing content that the author had already eloquently stated in a much more poignant, honest, and firsthand way. So I’m keeping those rambling thoughts for myself as a reminder that I still have so much to learn from others, and using this space to tell everyone in the world that you really need to go out and pick this...
  • Amanda (Books, Life and Everything Nice)
    Thank you to NetGalley, Atria Books and Keah Brown for an ARC ebook copy. As always, an honest review from me. Like: - fun, quick, entertaining read - Love her personality - Discusses that she doesn't want people using her life as a disabled person as their inspiration (instead of being inspired by her personality, achievements and general awesomeness!)- Her discussion about learning to do her own ponytail - The author's personality --> it really...
  • Bonnie Cline
    3.5 At first, I just really didn't get the writing style of this book. It helped to remind myself more than several times that it's a collection of essays...really more like a compilation of separate personal blog posts -- and, Keah Brown may be onto something here.Through this style, we get to know her -- her challenges, her joys and yearnings. Other writers may have presented their story differently; Brown is a young disabled black woman. Yet, ...
  • Seymone
    4.5 starsExcellent array of essays, a little redundant - at times, that has given me so much to think about. I love it, when something I read expands my awareness. This collection of essays certainly has, from thinking about the minutia (to me - an able bodied person) of seating and the comfort or lack there of, to a disabled person; to the lack of romantic love that some disabled people will never experience; to one that most minority groups see...
  • Hannah
    When I come across I book I love, one of two things happen: I either tear through it in an effort to devour the words and let them fill my skin, or I take my time because everything said is so genius and so impactful. Keah Brown's debut collection definitely falls into the latter group. As a fellow disabled writer, this book was such a joy to read. Never have a read something so truthful and vulnerable about disability, self love, and one's life ...
  • Melissa
    A very well-written essay collection about living as a disabled woman of color - how these intersections affect personal relationships, self-worth, internalized ableism, seeing one’s self (or not, as is the case) in books, film, and TV, and mental health. She writes so bravely about self-destructive thoughts and the plan to end her own life in a way that I think we don’t often “allow” in disability literature and she credits books by Sara...
  • Megan Sanks
    This was a great read! Brown also inspired me to listen to Demi Lovato's second album for the first time in years and it still holds up.
  • Julia
    This is one of the friendliest memoirs I've read, and one of the more optimistic ones. I'll be recommending this to some folks. I'm looking forward to reading more from the author, mostly for her authorial voice.
  • Lorena
    As a middle-aged white disabled woman, I don’t think I was part of the target audience for this book. I think it is aimed more at young black disabled women. It might be helpful for a tween girl struggling to accept herself, but I didn’t get much out of it and wish I would have spent my time reading something else.I thought this book was more boring and repetitious than wise and witty, and I couldn’t relate to the author’s pop culture ref...
  • Jen (Remembered Reads)
    This memoir/essay collection is certainly cute, which is on-brand for the #DisabledAndCute creator. It felt like much of the material had been setting up something more substantial but then retreated back to cute instead - but I think I may have expected something slightly different when I picked this up.The educational sections that introduce several chapters are generally 101-level, but for a younger audience (there were stretches of several es...
  • Katherine
    I've been looking forward to reading "The Pretty One" - or, at least, any novel-length work by Keah Brown - ever since I read her 2016 Catapult article, "Love, Disability, and Movies." In that article, Brown writes about her complicated relationship with the romantic comedy genre, which is marked not only by her love for the kinds of stories and relationships it portrays but also by her frustration with the lack of representation she sees in thes...
  • Ani
    Okay, first things first, can I say how amazing it was to read a book by a fellow Paramore fan? The author’s opinions on Paramore were extremely validating to me - if you’re reading this, Keah Brown, I felt that, in every chamber of my heart. :) The first word I would use to review this book would be articulate. The author tackles a wide dearth of topics throughout these many essays; addressing ableism, racism, sexism, mental health, and inte...
  • Jennifer
    Keah Brown is a disability rights advocate and creator of the #DisabledAndCute viral campaign. Her book, "The Pretty One" contains a collection of essays that explore what it means to be black and disabled in a mostly able-bodied white America. Her essays also discuss her deep affinity for all things pop culture, her relationship with her able-bodied identical twin (called “the pretty one” by friends), how she navigates romantic relationships...
  • Bookworm
    Not all that familiar with the author, other than the hashtag and having seen some of her tweets, so I thought this would be an interesting read. This essay collection is Brown discussing her life, what it's like to be disabled, pop culture, her family, her experiences, finding love (or not) and navigating life.She's an interesting writer but essay collections are not my format. I appreciated her candor and seeing what it was like for her, especi...
  • Liz Murray
    Such a beautiful and joyful read. Near the end I started taking it slower as I wanted to savor Keah Brown's words. I love the picture on the front cover and it really conveys how I feel about the book. It felt like a welcome from a friend with a keen analysis of her life and the lives of many others. The essays in the book feel tied together in an order that made me feel I was getting to know Keah more and more as the book went on. Like an onion ...
  • Camee
    3.5 stars. The Pretty One was an eye opening read that showed me a glimpse into the world of a disabled woman of color. One of my favorite essays in this book detailed the struggles Brown faced in wanting to be able to put her hair in a ponytail all on her own. I really admired her struggle and all that was behind finally accomplishing this act. It is something many of us would never think about and I appreciated that Brown detailed the many thin...
  • Michelle Kidwell
    The Pretty OneOn Life, Pop Culture, Disability, and Other Reasons to Fall in Love with Meby Keah BrownAtria BooksBiographies & MemoirsPub Date 06 Aug 2019I am reviewing a copy of The Pretty One through Atria Books and Netgalley:In this collection of Essays we discover that though Keah Brown loves herself now that was not always the case. She was born with Cerebral Palsy and at one time The Pretty OneOn Life, Pop Culture, Disability, and Other R...
  • Danielle Sepulveres
    At one point in the book Keah Brown's mother says "there is no end to you" and that's the feeling I had tenfold after reading the book. This debut is beautiful and humorous and emotional but also concludes in a way that you can't wait to know what's next for Brown. In "The Pretty One" she invites you in to share some of her most intimate thoughts and experiences living as a black disabled woman and what it's like to love so much of pop culture, T...