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!
  • 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
  • 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...
  • 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.
  • 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...
  • 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...
  • 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...
  • 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...
  • 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...
  • 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 ...
  • Cori
    Keah Brown opens her heart to offer her brand of hope and representation as a young (27 years old), Black, disabled woman. She wrote the book she wished had existed for her. One that shows a life of friends, family, and popular culture. I hope she reaches her dreams of writing for TV or the screen to bring that representation to a greater audience. She offers insights into lives often ignored or stared at as oddities. With help from brave writers...
  • Jenn Redington
    This book is incredible! It tells the incredible story of this strong woman. She tells her truths and even if you aren’t in the same situation as Keah, she will inspire you and will empower you and will educate you. She truly has given the world all the reasons to fall in love with her. Thank you for sharing your story Keah!
  • Lauren Salisbury
    I'm not sure if I couldn't get into this because I wasn't in the right reading space or because I've read just too many amazing collections and memoirs this year. I found myself not quite meshing with Brown's voice. I wanted to love this but just couldn't. I think there's some valuable stuff here, but it wasn't among my favorite reads.
  • Mo
    This is an excellent collection of essays. I hope to eventually be able to say why I love it so much, but for now I just want to add that it totally works as an audiobook, and Keah Brown's narration is fabulous.
  • Mike
    I think what I admire most about this book is how open and honest Keah is, not just about her struggles and triumphs, but about her joys, her flaws, her contradictions. It’s something I aspire to in my own writing, and I appreciate her for it. ‪I think what I admire most about this book is how open and honest Keah is, not just about her struggles and triumphs, but about her joys, her flaws, her contradictions. It’s something I aspire to i...
  • Allyson Ferrari
    Such a great book about disability identity and what it means to be a black disabled woman. She writes honestly and vulnerably, and with lots of humor.