To Hair and Back: My Journey Toward Self-love One Strand at a Time
Just about every woman I know has had some sort of personal struggle with her hair. Dyeing it, curling it, straightening it…we know all these things will damage our hair, and yet we persist. Why? Because our hair is a large part of how we present ourselves to the world. There isn’t much we can change about our skin, aside from tattoos, and our nails are too small to be easily noticed. Some go for piercings, but, by and large, the easiest way for women (and, increasingly, men as well) to show off a bit of their personality through their body is by messing with their hair. The trouble is that it’s hard to be satisfied, which I know all too well. It took me well into my adolescence to figure out how to get my hair to turn into a pretty set of curls rather than the giant puffball it was through my childhood.
Despite hair’s importance, Rhonda Eason’s book was the first memoir I found that placed hair at its center. As a little girl, she grew up surrounded by a mother and sisters who all had good hair while hers was, as described on the back cover, “a mass of uncontrollable tumbleweed.” Through most of her childhood, she wished for better hair, and as soon as she was an adult and could manage to afford stylists and treatments, she began to experiment, putting in relaxers and weaves, searching for something that would make her content with her hair.
The book isn’t solely about Rhonda’s hair (though, to be honest, her voice is vibrant and funny enough that I would be perfectly willing to read it even if it were) but follows her through her life, giving us all the biographical details a more conventional memoir would. The reader follows her through school as she deals with grades, friends, and even enemies – a rivalry between the Easons and a family who just moved into the neighborhood provides an exciting and alarming bit of drama that beautifully illustrates both Rhonda’s childhood neighborhood and her childhood spunk – and then into the military before showing us her career beyond. As I said, her voice is one in a million, and more than once I found myself laughing out loud at her sharp wit. She writes the way a good friend will talk: intimately and cleverly, making the reader feel both entertained and affectionate.
Normally, this is the point where I would say who I would most recommend this book to, but I’ve found myself faltering here with To Hair and Back. Honestly, I’d recommend this to everyone, so head on out for a good bit of enjoyment.
|Page Count||254 pages|
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|Category||Biographies & Memoirs|