Wednesday, February 16, 2022

Will by Will Smith

One of the most dynamic  and globally recognized entertainment forces of our time opens up fully about his life, in a brave and inspiring book that traces his learning curve to a place where outer success, inner happiness, and human connection are aligned. Along the way, Will tells the story in full of one of the most amazing rides through the worlds of music and film that anyone has ever had

Will Smith's transformation from a fearful child in a tense West Philadelphia home to one of the biggest pop stars of his era and then one of the biggest movie stars in Hollywood history, with a string of box office successes that will likely never be broken, is an epic tale of inner transformation and outer triumph, and Will tells it astonishingly well. But it's only half the story.

Will Smith thought, with good reason, that he had won at life: not only was his own success unparalleled, his whole family was at the pinnacle of the entertainment world. Only they didn't see it that way: they felt more like star performers in his circus, a seven-days-a-week job they hadn't signed up for. It turned out Will Smith's education wasn't nearly over.

This memoir is the product of a profound journey of self-knowledge, a reckoning with all that your will can get you and all that it can leave behind. Written with the help of Mark Manson, author of the multi-million-copy bestseller The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck, Will is the story of how one exceptional man mastered his own emotions, written in a way that can help everyone else do the same. Few of us will know the pressure of performing on the world's biggest stages for the highest of stakes, but we can all understand that the fuel that works for one stage of our journey might have to be changed if we want to make it all the way home. The combination of genuine wisdom of universal value and a life story that is preposterously entertaining, even astonishing, puts Will the book, like its author, in a category by itself.

I love Will Smith, and have done since I was a kid listening to his awesome tunes, and diving in front of the TV to watch The Fresh Prince of Bel Air. So I was really excited to start this book. I gave it 4 stars.

I really did love learning about Will’s early life. There were so many things in the book that I had no idea about. I never knew how him and Jazzy Jeff became friends. But they made an incredible duo, and the story of their friendship was a lovely thing to read. 

One thing I noticed about Will, and this is not a criticism, is he seems rather big headed in the book! But, he is Will Smith, one of the biggest movie stars/tv stars/rappers, so he is allowed to blow his own trumpet once in a while. But yeah, he came across a little big headed sometimes, but it took nothing away from how much I love this dude. It was really interesting to read about how life turned out for him and very quickly too, and how easy it is for money and fame to go to your head. A basketball court in his living room? There were so many fun stories, like Jeff’s broken leg and the removal of his casts! I bet these guys have so many more stories to tell.

All fun aside, there were some really poignant moments, and I cried quite a bit towards the end. It was the chapters about his Dad, and even though their relationship wasn’t always the best, god do it break my heart reading through those last moments. His and Jada’s love is another thing completely. If you read it you’ll know what I mean. I think they seem like such an amazing strong couple, and they could take on the world together.

If you like biographies, I’m sure you’d like this one. Will is funny, loving and caring, and honestly a loving memory of my childhood. Thanks Mr Smith, I really enjoyed reading about your life.

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