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Review: My Own Devices by Dessa

Hey hi hello!

I know it was just yesterday I blogged about what was almost a five star book for me, but guess what?! I have another one to recommend!

I literally started this book yesterday, around the same time as I write this now, and I was absolutely not expecting to finish it so quickly, nor to get so caught up in it. In fact, for the first time, I pulled out a pencil and started underlining things and making little notes in the margins. I’ve always felt too guilty to do that before but I just had to! There were so many thoughts running through my mind! By the way, I would love to hear about how you write (or don’t) in your books because it’s such a new experience for me.

Anyways, My Own Devices is a memoir – it’s written by a rapper – and absolutely not something I would usually read. In the interest of full disclosure, I did read it at first because I won it in a Goodreads giveaway without quite fully reading the description. When I saw I won, it was like, “okay, I don’t even listen to rap. What in the world could this Dessa have to say?”.

Let me tell you, Dessa has absolutely everything and anything to say! From advice on asking questions, to super real thoughts and feelings about aging and mental health, Dessa talks in a way that I feel resonates with me. Her memoir is full of absolutely humorous anecdotes (that actually made me laugh out loud, not the little extra breath I would usually do) but she mixes them with nostalgia and melancholy until you can’t tell the difference. Her life is interwoven through the pages, with ups and downs, much like I imagine it actually is in her day to day.

Amongst the anecdotes and rapping and heartaches, Dessa is surprisingly exceedingly well educated and spoken. She uses useless information, that you didn’t know you didn’t know, and connects in such a way that makes you wonder at how everything has a lesson. The informational aspect of her memoir is actually super intriguing. I found myself googling, “how much did Taylor Swift insure her legs for?” at one point. Despite obviously being well versed, she also speaks humbly, of things like the Great Pinterest Revival and other terms she’s coined. Basically, she’s both out of this world and down to earth at once.

However, part of what kept me turning page after page was her love story. If you’re a sucker for sappy, lovey doves romances then maybe this memoir isn’t for you. Or maybe, you’re like Dessa, and it is. Returning to her romance, year after year, and failing every subsequent return is something that some of us can very well relate too. And no, it doesn’t end like a fairytale. In my opinion, it ends a little better – with science; I think this was the most candid breakup I have ever read about, and definitely the most interesting. The science and technology she wrote about fascinated me. Love and science, who knew they could mix so well?

Just like love and science, Dessa and her memoir are a pairing I won’t likely forget. Her words are truly magical, and her love story is truly authentic. This memoir is one that anyone can find themselves in.

12 thoughts on “Review: My Own Devices by Dessa

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