Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Book Review: 'She's All Caught Up!' by Jamila T. Davis

New York Author Jamila T. Davis is `making the most of a bad situation'. Having received her degree from Lincoln University, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Having a successful professional background as in the Hip-Hop Music Industry and a self-made millionaire through real estate investments, she became embroiled in a multi-million dollar bank fraud scheme, convicted of bank fraud and sentenced to 12 1/2 years in federal prison. In a situation that would destroy many less strong individuals, Jamila instead turned this bad situation around, using her time while incarcerated to re-think her life choices and decisions and as a result has become a motivational speaker and the creator of the Voices of Consequences Enrichment Series for incarcerated women, has written seven books about her life and how she learned to negate negative thinking patterns, achieve emotional healing, and restoration and growth and inspire and empower her audience to achieve spiritual and emotional wholeness and become their very best, despite their dilemmas and past obstacles.

Jamila's book is a memoir and as we learn from page one dated June 10, 2012, `I'm writing this introduction sitting on the top of my bunk bed in a 5 ½-by-9-foot cubicle at the Danbury Federal Prison Camp in Danbury, Connecticut. I never thought in a million years, that at the age of thirty-four, this would be the residence I would call my new home. I always viewed prison as a place for bad people, like murderers, robbers, and rapists. I never thought I'd fit into the category of a prisoner. I guess I thought I was above the law or that the law would never catch up to me. Boy, was I wrong! During my four years of incarceration, I've had nothing but time to think, reflect, and explore. The question that has constantly repeated in my mind is: How did I get here?'And with great sensitivity not only about her life but about the context of writing a memoir she follows this with a Prologue beginning January 29, 1995 - a solid way to allow the reader to grow into her life from her birth, to her rise, to her fall from success, and the history of how she arrived at the peak of her glory and then fell into crime and incarceration.

While there are many reasons that Jamila's book is solid, the overriding reason it makes such an impact on the reader is the eloquence of her writing: this is a memoir but it could easily be a novel, so well proportioned is her approach to explaining her history and using that explanation as a standard for coping with negative choices and their consequences by learning from the author's experience, deftly designed as a source of advice and encouragement and support for those who read this book - and everyone has had a degree of error in choices and decisions that once aligned with acknowledgment can be repaired with developing emotional and spiritual healthfulness. Choices - how to make the right ones and avoid the bad ones. Grady Harp, July 15

Editor's note: This review has been published with the permission of Grady Harp. Like what you read? Subscribe to the SFRB's free daily email notice so you can be up-to-date on our latest articles. Scroll up this page to the sign-up field on your right.