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My Infamous Life: The Autobiography of Mobb Deep's Prodigy Hardcover – April 19, 2011


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Touchstone; First Edition edition (April 19, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1439103186
  • ISBN-13: 978-1439103180
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.3 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #759,179 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

''Prodigy at one time was one of the best rappers in the game . . . he was close to being the best rapper in the game.'' --Jay-Z

''Albert 'Prodigy' Johnson and his partner, Kejuan 'Havoc' Mujita, used their hardcore street stories to forever change the rap game alongside fellow NYC titans Nas, the Notorious B.I.G., Jay-Z, and Wu-Tang Clan.'' --Village Voice

''We had our differences, which was really just hyped-up bull****. I wish everything for Prodigy . . . I just wish the best for him . . . And I would love to see them come back again. I would be the first person in the record store buying a Mobb album.'' --Nas

''Most of the groups that were around when New York's Mobb Deep debuted in 1993 have fallen to the wayside either because they could not stick together or fans no longer cared about their music. But the duo - Havoc and Prodigy - have not only remained allegiant to one another, they've maintained their status as one of the premier groups in hip-hop.'' --MTV News --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

About the Author

As one half of the hip-hop phenomenon Mobb Deep, ALBERT ''PRODIGY'' JOHNSON has sold millions of albums, performed throughout the world, and recorded with the elite of hip-hop, R&B, and rock with his signature style of hard-core, reality-based music. Born with the hereditary disease sickle-cell anemia, Prodigy has battled pain his entire life and is now promoting the importance of a healthy diet, spiritual enrichment, and a positive, productive lifestyle. He lives in Queens, New York, with his wife and three children.

Hip-hop has taken writer LAURA CHECKOWAY around the world. The former senior editor of Vibe magazine, she has penned revealing celebrity profiles and investigative features for numerous publications and is a regular contributor to RollingStone.com. As a documentary filmmaker, she continues to share stories that impact, haunt, and last. She lives in Brooklyn, New York. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Very captivating, I would like more.
Louis Karim Panneton
I recommend this book to any one who is at all a fan of Prodigy, Mobb Deep, Hip-Hop or just for a great read on interesting stories from such an infamous life.
Craig Mack
With Prodigy's book I read it in it's entirety in less than 24 hours - It was that good of a read.
DaveSincere

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Chieck Kongo on April 23, 2011
Format: Hardcover
For those unaware of Mobb Deep, this is a group that rose in the mid-90's or "second golden era" of hip-hop. At the time, they brought to the table a mix of aggression, introspection, and street logic to their craft that set them apart from their peers. The combination of Havoc's beats and Prodigy's high level of street rhyming had them ranked as high-echelon rappers among fans and peers. Though their theme of crime-life was common at the time, their particular style set them apart as it was much more detailed, felt more "real", and gave a deeper look into the mind of the street thug waiting to rob you. Most of this was credited to Prodigy's unique voice and serious way of rhyming, and is confirmed by sound bytes of Prodigy's various quotes being sampled and sprinkled in the songs of countless rappers to date.

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I usually stay away from autobiographies written by rap figures, because in the macho world of rap, there's a high chance of making themselves look like Superman and/or constantly altering supposedly true events. In this book, Prodigy is brutally honest -- I would say SHOCKINGLY honest at times about himself and others and it is a wonder how some of his friends that he mentions even agreed to let him include some of things written about them. THAT is the charm of this book.

My Infamous Life is a highly detailed account of Prodigy's life who wrote it while serving three years in prison on a gun charge. Starting from birth and health complications that began shortly thereafter, P introduces us to many of his family members and childhood friends and his exploits with them.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Harriet Klausner #1 HALL OF FAME on April 21, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This is an insightful autobiography that hooks the audience from the Introduction as Prodigy in a prison four hours from the city realizes he is just another inmate though a celebrity. From there Prodigy explains his family roots changed from musical affluence to the Queensborough projects where violent crime is the norm. For instance, Prodigy, who suffers from Sickle Cell Anemia, admits he committed a robbery to insure he met the code of high school which reminded me of the 1950s Blackboard Jungle by Evan Hunter. His family also knew crime first hand when his aunt a bartender was shot in Queens. When he became a famous rapper, blood money and drugs eventually led to prison. There he found out who his true friends are.

This is a timely fabulous memoir as Albert Johnson pulls no punches with his insightful look at his "infamous life" and at the civil war era of Hip Hop. Profound throughout Mr. Johnson lays bare his guts of thriving and dying in the concrete jungle of New York. Although too frequent use of the first person "I" pronoun at the start of sentences (even for an autobiography) feels a bit disjointing, readers will appreciate the honesty that Mr. Johnson provides in this deep gripping introspective memoir.

Harriet Klausner
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Azazm333 on September 27, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Okay so let's see, rapper Prodigy makes a book that has sparked a lot of so-called controversy in the immediate hip hop/rapper world -Sounds fun.
So the book is about his life from the beginning up to what's been going on with him during the last few years. It's insightful on many levels.
I laughed a lot while reading it but that's from me being desensitized to many things rather than the author trying to be funny.
The only problem with this book is that for me I read a few key things that were a bit questionable and Prodigy has a thing for green eyes. But other than that, worth every penny for any Mobb Deep fan.
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By Aaron on July 5, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Its like Prodigy's talk right to you. I've enjoyed this book.
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By Marcel Lee on July 3, 2014
Format: Audible Audio Edition
I was never a fan of Prodigy as a rapper. This book, an autobiography grammatically molded by Laura Checkoway, is better than most of his verses. That opinion relies, of course, on the assumption that everything portrayed here is the truth, or at least the truth as Prodigy honestly remembers it. It’s hard to tell. He cries over a girl, which even I consider a sucker move, but has no fear when it comes to fighting bigger dudes and getting shot at. Either way, aside from him occasionally swaying from the story to express his thoughts on race and religion, it’s an interesting read. As far as the concept is concerned though, his life before becoming famous should’ve been limited to the prologue so that he could devote more of the book to the Infamous parts.

marcellee.com
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Format: Audio CD
It was awesome hearing the story from Prodigy the true emotion as he relived moments made it so genuine! It also was an eye opener for certain moments that were made public and how they got spun
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I'd heard that he'd had a religious experience and had a message for young people. But I didn't find it in this book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you're an 80s baby and grew up on East Coast hip hop, this is a MUST! There is a story involving almost all of the heavy hitters from that time, from E Money Bags calling and threatening Jay-Z, to the Mobb beating up N.O.R.E., to Pee partying with Lindsay Lohan, this book has it all! Half thuggish memoir, half comedic biography, this is a MUST READ for anyone who grew up bumping the M O BB.
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