BOOK REVIEW: You will like this, so you better ‘Put a Ring on It’ | Lifestyles

You had been “Loopy in Love.”

It occurred the primary time you heard Beyoncé Knowles, earlier than she received a Grammy, earlier than she added to her life with a person and motherhood. It occurred the primary time you noticed her, a thin baby with a mispronounced identify, and in “Queen Bey,” a ebook of essays edited by Veronica Chambers, you’ll need to say that identify once more.

“What may a Black lady be on this world?”

That’s a query Veronica Chambers says she’s spent her lifetime asking. The reply arrived within the songs of a performer who “has little interest in separating herself from the battle of being a Black lady…” That singer, Beyoncé Knowles-Carter, “is the best performer alive,” in response to Luvvie Ajayi, one essayist right here.

When Beyoncé was first seen (on TV’s “Star Search”in 1993), viewers acknowledged her expertise. Even then, she was “our era” and that by no means modified: as of late, she’s “named the ache of… Black girls who… love Black males…” Via her actions and music, she’s proven that “Black males’s apologies to Black girls matter.” Author Ylonda Gault says that there have been occasions when Beyoncé’s life eerily paralleled Gault’s. Meredith Broussard calls Beyoncé “a continuing presence in my very own life.”

She’s a businesswoman who reportedly has a climate-controlled archive of each print and digital little bit of press along with her identify in it. She’s a author, mom, feminist, actress, and award-winner; a “hard-working skilled,” a champion for homosexual rights, an inspiration for younger Black ladies, and a consolation for girls who’ve miscarried. And she or he’s a dancer: who amongst us hasn’t memorized the unbelievable strikes seen in her music movies? 

Naysayers and haters may scoff, however for a fan, there’s most likely nothing Beyoncé can’t do. Says author Edward Enninful, “she’s above traits. She will’t be put in a field. Frankly, she will do no matter she needs.”

Let’s cease proper right here a second: in case you barely know who Beyoncé is and might’t identify not less than 5 of her songs, you’ll be able to put your newspaper down now. Go do one thing else, as a result of this ebook shouldn’t be for you.

Come to suppose, it’s not a ebook for mere informal followers, both. No, “Queen Bey” is a ebook for rabid, die-hard, sing-all-the-songs followers who know what the Hive is, and exist in it. It’s for the readers who’ve listened to Beyoncé’s albums and watched all of the movies time and again, as a result of all of the contributors to this ebook have finished that, too. It’s for followers who’ve performed the “Michael, Whitney, or Beyoncé?” recreation.

Simply beware: this over-the-edge rhetoric right here can get excessively florid, generally making Knowles-Carter seem to be a deity, and that lack of perspective can mar the messages behind the outpouring of affection. Readers with a bent to roll their eyes may try this right here, Beyoncé fan or not.

Maintain that in thoughts if you see this ebook. In the event you’re a someday follower, you’ll most likely be happier simply taking a go. In the event you can’t get sufficient of “Queen Bey,” you’ll prefer it and also you “shoulda put a bookmark in it.”

“Queen Bey: A Celebration of the Energy and Creativity of Beyoncé Knowles-Carter,” edited by Veronica Chambers, 224 pages, c.2019, St. Martin’s Press, $27.99.

• Terri Schlichenmeyer of The Bookworm Sez is a self-syndicated ebook evaluate columnist. Schlichenmeyer’s opinions embody grownup and youngsters books of each style. Chances are you’ll contact her at

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