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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Our Life and Times
Like most people, I went into this book more excited about celebrity dirt. As you'll quickly discover, this is a book about a man's life, a true memoir. Yes, there's a little bit of sex here and there, and some celebrity references, but at the end of the day, this is a memoir about a man's search for identity and salvation.

Terrance Dean receives an A+ for...
Published on May 10, 2008 by E. Montgomery

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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Emotional Purging
Hiding in Hip Hop: Confessions of a Down Low Brother in the Entertainment Industry by Terrance Dean is an intimate account of the author's experience as an undercover brother. As a child, Dean was forced to cope with issues surrounding drugs, abandonment, AIDS, and molestation. As an adult, those issues still plagued him, but he was able to add sexuality to his list of...
Published on June 18, 2008 by D. Frazier


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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Emotional Purging, June 18, 2008
By 
D. Frazier (Cleveland, Ohio) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
Hiding in Hip Hop: Confessions of a Down Low Brother in the Entertainment Industry by Terrance Dean is an intimate account of the author's experience as an undercover brother. As a child, Dean was forced to cope with issues surrounding drugs, abandonment, AIDS, and molestation. As an adult, those issues still plagued him, but he was able to add sexuality to his list of problems. His fulfillment in having sex with other men would not have been so huge had he not been a part of the entertainment business. But because he was flooded with images of masculinity and saw how the rich and famous treated those who were openly gay, he contrived an artificial existence as a heterosexual man ultimately hiding in Hip Hop.

Dean was not the typical down-low guy though. In actuality, he loathed the way some down-low men lied to their women. He also was not too keen on playing second fiddle to men who wanted to have their cake and eat it too. Dean wanted much more. He wanted real love. And he wanted to know how he could attain that love and still be accepted in a business that was all about images and facades. Through his desires to love freely, dealing with his estranged family, and attempting to find a way to overcome his conflict with his sexual preference, Dean started Men's Empowerment where he invited his peers to discuss the stressors that came with celebrity and/or power. Men's Empowerment became a seed flourishing into other groups that helped communities in New York and ultimately helped Dean do some serious soul searching.

Hiding is Hip Hop was a decent read. It garnered so much attention that by the time I read it, I was so intrigued by the celebrities Dean was not naming and almost missed the point of his book. He did an excellent job of protecting the innocent, as I was unable to positively identify anyone he described, but I had tons of fun trying to figure them out. Because he used fictitious names, and so many of them, I often lost track of who was who and why they mattered. There were a few name glitches complete with misspellings and the timeline was a bit off. Sometimes, I could not tell what time period he was speaking of, but it may have been to protect celebrity's anonymity. Overall, Hiding in Hip Hop is an entertaining read if you enjoy playing guessing games. Readers who like memoirs and stories that delve into the struggles of human nature would also find this story fulfilling.

Reviewed by Darnetta Frazier
APOOO BookClub
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Our Life and Times, May 10, 2008
Like most people, I went into this book more excited about celebrity dirt. As you'll quickly discover, this is a book about a man's life, a true memoir. Yes, there's a little bit of sex here and there, and some celebrity references, but at the end of the day, this is a memoir about a man's search for identity and salvation.

Terrance Dean receives an A+ for his brutally honest portrait of his real life insecurities, confusion and loneliness, making this book so worth reading. So much more than which celebrities are doing what, this book really brings to light the fight or flight mentality so many black gay men endure every day in every part of this country, just to survive.

How I wish this book had existed 20 years ago.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brutally honest, May 11, 2008
An incredibly accurate portrayal of the industry. Those who make a living in hip hop know that it may only be surpassed by the closeted gay men in the entertainment industry of the Black churches. The book is truly an eye-opener to those who thought their "macho ganstas" were all that.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Glad there were no names, May 24, 2008
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I am glad Terrance Dean didn't name names. At first I thought that it was a ploy to sell books or for legal reasons. Once reading I realize that if he would have named names then he would have been a sell-out. It would have been out of character for someone in his situation.

The book detailed the struggles of a bisexual African American man working in a highly publicized industry. I was shocked at most of what I read about the "down low brothers" but not entirely surprised considering the nature of the book.

The riddles are not entirely easy to figure out. I think I immediately knew who one of the people, Ella (I think that was her psuedo-name), was. Otherwise I think the descriptions hides the identities of the people involved very well. And really...I DON'T want to know who everyone is. T.M.I. for sure.

This book was a fast read. Not something I would reread but definitely sheds some light on a sensitive situation.
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23 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Oooooh! I've made a couple of guesses already!, May 4, 2008
By 
Jenae Richards (Philadelphia, PA United States) - See all my reviews
Yes, yes, yes, I know. This is supposed to be a serious book about a gay man's struggle to accept his sexuality, and love himself for who he is.

And it is that.

But I'm not going to lie, I bought it to find out which ones of these so-called gangsta hip hop stars is really homo. Be honest! Isn't that why you want to read it?

There are a few names mentioned in the book, but it's mostly descriptions of the stars -- so thinly veiled you can guess who the author is talking about. I'm not a real for real hip-hop fan, but even I was able to guess four or five. And let me say (are you ready for this?), if I'm guessing correctly, one of the people mentioned played a large part in Karrin Steffans' book, Confessions of a Video Vixen!

Can you believe it?

I do!

I'm not going to spoil it by posting my guesses, because 90 percent of the enjoyment of the book is figuring it out for yourselves. But another rapper mentioned is tatooed, and always rags on homos in his raps. Yep, yep, yep!

I heard that the author is supposed to be on the Wendy Williams show on May 13th, and I can't wait!
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Keep It on the Down Lowwww!!, May 23, 2008
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i was anxiously awaiting the release of this book and i was thrilled when amazon received it early. once i began reading this book, i was shocked to discover that he used monikers instead of giving actual names. i really wanted to know the names of the gay rappers and other allegedly gay entertainers that the media speculates about. altogether, this was an enjoyable read because he spares no details when it comes to his life. this book would've been a 5 star had the timeline not been all over the place and he would have given out the actual names of his lovers and the other men and women who were part of his downlow circle.
3.5 stars
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Nothing Explosive Here!, August 5, 2012
By 
GregNYC (New York, NY) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Hiding in Hip Hop: On the Down Low in the Entertainment Industry--from Music to Hollywood (Paperback)
This book is nothing too explosive or revealing. Anyone that knows anything knows that there is DL activity anywhere, and hip hop is no exception. What was really sad is the self denial, lying, and bigotry that men on the DL often exhibit and the author goes to great lengths to remind us how they do it.

This book was a incredible work of extreme narcissism by the author. Every chapter he was talking about how everyone wanted him and how he got every latest and greatest star. Since there was no sources and everyone's identify was protected (thats fine) it could have all been a work of fiction for all we know. The author is not a "star" himself, so the narcissistic reminders of how great and admired he is and attractive to everyone was extreme.

The book could have been 1/2 the length. Extreme repetitiveness. I really liked this book (for the first 100 pages) then I went....whoa....this is one piece of 1) narcissism and 2) repetitiveness. Also - the book was all over the place. Who edited this!? At one point he referred to white people as "the white people" - thats when I lost respect for him as a serious author.

The only good thing I can say about the issue at hand here, (DL in Hip hop) is thank god Frank Ocean came out recently. Maybe this will make this 2008 book seem dated as (hopefully) more come forward about their sexuality and stop seeing it as a flaw, for which it is not.

Final verdict: junk status
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Provocative, Insightful and A Great Story Behind The Glitz, January 28, 2009
Delivering exactly what its description suggests "a provocative and honest look at stardom and sexuality," Terrence Dean's Hiding in Hip Hop turned out to be a great read - in fact a book that I couldn't seem to put down.

Coming after a line of several `tell-all' books from the `Video Vixen,' Karrine Steffans and Carmen Bryan's `It's No Secret,' Terrence Dean's book seemed to fulfill the Hip-Hop afficionado's wildest dream - the outing of those they thought were `questionable' but sadly for those who only picked up the book to get names they aren't revealed. For those who actually read tell-all's with an open mind and interest in getting inside the authors head like myself it was much more of a delight.

While most people have dismissed the book as nothing more than a chance to air `dirty laundry' with the hope of financial gain, I learned quickly that Dean's story behind the glitz and glamor of Hollywood or even the men he encounters is that of many African American or ethnic men who are damned by society if their true being is revealed.

Detailing his struggle at an early age, in terms of coming to terms with his sexuality and the unfortunate destruction left in the wake of AIDS in his family, Terrence Dean admits that he did not want to disappoint his Grandmother. In fact, it is Dean's relationship with Grandma Pearl that is most touching in this story because we all have a Grandma Pearl - gay or straight, black, white, yellow, beige or whatever color, there's a Grandma Pearl in your life. Her words live in the back of your mind when you're contemplating doing something you shouldn't; when you're down at your lowest point; or even when you've reached the success that she told you could because ...she loved you and that's all that mattered.

While it seems Grandma Pearl is often his backbone, Dean offers up the truthful and often taboo subject of gay black men ostracizing themselves from family, friends and co-workers due to their sexuality, especially (as is the case in this novel) when you have a bible toting auntie or uncle who damn everyone to hell who steps outside of the quote "perfect" Christian lifestyle.

For those of us who enjoy salacious and daring stories of intimacy, Terrence Dean leaves no stone unturned when it comes to his adventures with both Hollywood and the Music industry's elite ranging from a hot bodied model to a hip hop star that arranged rendevous with Dean for weeks while escorting his girlfriend out the door. Of course the ultimate in scandal, is Dean's sexual encounter with a man of the cloth who dared to invite him (after having sex) to his church !

Whether you're quote "okay" with his lifestyle or not, Hiding in Hip Hop is a book that needs to be read in order to understand where a lot of men are coming from and where we as a society can go. If nothing else you have to ask yourself.... why do I care so much whether this brother or sister is gay or straight, especially since I'm partaking in that TV show, CD or Movie they were a part of ?
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finally!, June 3, 2008
I heard about this book from Publisher's Weekly last year and have been in a mild state of anticipation ever since.

I read this book in a day and a half and I must say that I enjoyed every second. I, like many others, was able to guess several of the names and have now gone back through it to figure out the rest. I am happy to see someone finally write about the 'down low' men and women in the entertainmaent industry because we know it exists. Am I surprised about any of the people 'mentioned' in the book? Absolutely not! But I live and let live.

Aside from the outings, Terrance gives the readers an in depth look into his life, from his drug-addicted mother, the sexual abuse he experienced at the hands of a family friend and above all else, his journey to self-acceptance. I was thoroughly moved by Terrance's candor and impressed with his ability to turn his aspirations into successes.

You, Me and He
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I want more..., May 31, 2008
I thought this book was a good read. Offered some insight into the industry that I didn't know existed. I didn't like the structure of the book- was a bit jumbled and scattered at times. All in all- you can guess quite a few people if you put your mind to it. I think the overall point of the book has less to do with the identities of the people and more to do with Dean's exploration of himself.
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Hiding in Hip Hop: On the Down Low in the Entertainment Industry--from Music to Hollywood
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