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Confessions of a Video Vixen Paperback – October 17, 2006
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“An easy, entertaining read... a cautionary tale that contains a timeless message to a new generation of women.” (--South Florida Sun Sentinel)
From the Back Cover
Part tell-all, part cautionary tale, this emotionally charged memoir from a former video vixen nicknamed 'Superhead' goes beyond the glamour of celebrity to reveal the inner workings of the hip-hop dancer industry—from the physical and emotional abuse that's rampant in the industry, and which marked her own life—to the excessive use of drugs, sex and bling.
Once the sought-after video girl, this sexy siren has helped multi-platinum artists, such as Jay-Z, R. Kelly and LL Cool J, sell millions of albums with her sensual dancing. In a word, Karrine was H-O-T. So hot that she made as much as $2500 a day in videos and was selected by well-known film director F. Gary Gray to co-star in his film, A Man Apart, starring Vin Diesel. But the film and music video sets, swanky Hollywood and New York restaurants and trysts with the celebrities featured in the pages of People and In Touch magazines only touches the surface of Karrine Steffans' life.
Her journey is filled with physical abuse, rape, drug and alcohol abuse, homelessness and single motherhood—all by the age of 26. By sharing her story, Steffans hopes to shed light on an otherwise romanticised industry and help young women avoid the same pitfalls she encountered. If they're already in danger, she hopes to inspire them to find a way to dig themselves out of what she knows first-hand
to be a cycle of hopelessness and despair.
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Karrine Steffans was born in St. Thomas and ran away from home as a teenager escaping the poverty of her childhood. Like a lot who were on her path, she went into the glamorous world of hip hop, stripping and modeling in order to support herself and then later her son. She eventually went to appearing in hip hop videos and made her way into stardom, marrying and divorcing her abusive, rapper husband Kool G Rap. Her book chronicles her relationships with her ex husband, and eventually with a variety of other rappers and professional athletes, including Jay-Z, DMX, Bobby Brown, Ja Rule, Shaquille O'Neil, Usher, P Diddy.
Why did she end up used, abused and hung out to dry by them (or any other)? Because she wanted to be loved, and she thought this is what you do to be loved in this world. Her most famous statement was that she had wives calling her looking for their husbands. When she told the wives that she had never even met their husband(s), their response was "Oh, well you will soon then." What does this say about the culture of celebrity and being a celebrity wife? That you have to accept certain things that ordinary women do not if you want to live this life of glitz and glamour and perks. She lived her life in all caps before age 25 like all women have who are in the rock n' roll / hip hop world, and then you grow up and realize it's not what it seems and you want a real man who deserves you rather than a guy like this. The problem is finding one. And she's still here, and has made a nice career out of writing and giving advice to women on how to be hot and sexy. She took lemons and made lemonade, for that we can admire her.
When it comes to why Karrine wrote Confessions of a Video Vixen, I didn’t believe that Karrine woke up one day thought “I’m going to go sleep with Ja Rule, Usher, Diddy, and others, so I can write a book about it”. One lesson I have learned about stories is that there always more to them and that is the case with this book.
Confessions of a Video Vixen is a story about a girl who endured physical, mental, and emotional abuse from mother and it began a cycle for Karrine that continued as she found herself in abusive relationships. Karrine’s mother put in her mind that she was unwanted, unloved, and unworthy.
In my honest opinion, Karrine went looking for love in all the wrong places because of foundation built for her was weak. Karrine’s mother and ex told her constantly how she was unloved and the cycle continued in this book and her other books. In this book, Karrine also battled depression, alcoholism, and drug addiction that built on the destructive cycle she was already on.
I believe one of the saddest moments in this book outside of Karrine’s mother abusing her and lowering her self-esteem was how her ex (who she met when she was 17 while stripping) kicked her out while she was pregnant because of an argument and before she left, he demanded that she cook a steak for him and the only thing he cared about was making sure his steak didn’t get burned.
Another sad moment in the book was when Karrine was being put out of her home and she called a few of the guys she had hooked up with and partied with and asked them for money so she and her baby wouldn’t be homeless and they didn’t seem to care. According to her, they provided thousands of dollars for shopping sprees and other things, but when she really needed help they could only spare her a few hundred dollars. Karrine learned that these guys were just using her and turned to hustling in order to feed her son because she didn’t have any money. It was a lesson that Karrine had to learn the hard way when it came to the men she thought really cared about her.
It was amazing reading the biography of Karrine’s life and reading the “more” to her story. This book is worth the five stars that I’m giving it. I see why it was a New York Best Seller. I’m glad Karrine wrote this book to show just what goes on behind the scenes at video shoots and it’s more to them than shooting fun music videos and meeting so called cool people.
One last thing: I received Vindicated and read it in two days at the beginning of June and by the end of June, I had bought five of Karrine’s books. When I start reading Karrine’s books I read them in two days or less because I can’t put them down. It’s nothing for me to lose interest quickly in a book, but that’s not the case with this book because, like Vindicated it was one of the best ones I have read. I suggest this book and Karrine’s other books to anyone who is looking to read interesting, informative, and entertaining books.