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Better Than I Know Myself | [Virginia DeBerry, Donna Grant]

Better Than I Know Myself

The beloved #1 Essence best-selling authors of Tryin' to Sleep in the Bed You Made now deliver a novel in which you'll meet their most unforgettable characters yet. Carmen, Jewel, and Regina could not be more different. When they meet as freshmen at Columbia University, they're pretty confident that a friendship among them isn't in the cards.
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Publisher's Summary

The beloved #1 Essence best-selling authors of Tryin' to Sleep in the Bed You Made now deliver a novel in which you'll meet their most unforgettable characters yet. Carmen, Jewel, and Regina could not be more different. When they meet as freshmen at Columbia University, they're pretty confident that a friendship among them isn't in the cards.

Jewel is Hollywood royalty; as the teenage star of the TV show Daddy's Girl, her face is instantly recognizable all across America. Now, though, she wants two things: to get a serious education and to leave her controlling stage-mother behind. Regina is the definitive upper-middle-class African-American girl. Her picture-perfect parents are what she calls "black Ward and June Cleavers", and their goals for her are like a stranglehold. No one can see, though, how far Regina's rebellious side will take her, or how treacherous it will become. Carmen is just trying to get by. A child of the projects whose father is dead and whose mother has vanished, Carmen has been raised by her abusive brother. Columbia is the way for her to get a better life, if she can hold down two jobs and keep her grade point average up.

When the three of them meet, their lives are at a crossroad. And as the years progress, from the 1980s to the present day, they are challenged by drug addiction, fame, secrets from the past, sickness, betrayal, and the darkest things women can face. One of them won't survive. But what will be the lasting legacy of their friendship? Better Than I Know Myself is a novel of heartache, triumph, tears, and the unshakeable bonds among women.

©2004 Virginia DeBerry and Donna Grant; (P)2004 Blackstone Audiobooks

What Members Say

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4.2 (369 )
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4.1 (141 )
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  •  
    Victoria Cranford, NJ, USA 02-01-05
    Victoria Cranford, NJ, USA 02-01-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
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    16
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    "A great listen!"

    A great listen! At first I was intimidated by the length of the story but like any great book I could not put it away and the time flew by. A must have for your listening pleasure!!!

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ann Brooklyn, NY, United States 04-13-05
    Ann Brooklyn, NY, United States 04-13-05 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    45
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    441
    20
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    1
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    "Could Not Put It Away"

    This was by far one of the best audible titles that I have listened to. The Characters are so real and unforgettable. The Narration just pulls you right into their lives.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Valerie Montclair, NJ, USA 03-13-05
    Valerie Montclair, NJ, USA 03-13-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    "I loved it"

    Slow in the beginning but it picked up and when that happened I couldn't put it down. I related to all of the women for different reasons and still even knowing that it is fiction and the story is over, I often think of these three sister-friends. My only problem with this book and most other audiobook is the lack of diversity when it comes to character voices. Athough they try to use different inflections to portray a different character, it is so not convincing and to some extent annoying. Women can't sound like men and men can't sound like women, what you have is exactly that, "sounding like". Because the narrator is a female for this book, her voice portrayal of the male characters left me with a very cloudy and distorted vision of who these men really are. There's so much in a voice. But overall, a great listen.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tiana SHEPPARD AFB, TX, USA 02-13-05
    Tiana SHEPPARD AFB, TX, USA 02-13-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    "excellent..."

    This was my first audio book and I loved it. I couldn't put it down. I listened to it at my desk, in my car, in my bed. It was excellent.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Denise peele 02-03-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
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    12
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    "Live life as if it is your last"

    Very good book, the characters were very good and I love the narrators. This book has laughs, and sorrows. Very good reading. Next to the best book, I have listened to from Audible.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Patricia Worthy 05-21-05 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
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    7
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    "Good Story; Bad Narration"

    I liked the story of the three women and found their characters very believable if I focused on what the authors wrote and not on the narrators voice, diction and stereotypical intonation. This narrator sounded very much like a 14 -15 year old girl attempting to do a professional narration. In the beginning when the main characters were fresh out of high school on their way to college, it was not so bad to have them all sound like a 13 or 14 year old from a black television sitcom. When they were grown up it was quite annoying. The narrator also made one of the male characters sound like he was retarded to portray his lack of street smarts and another she made sound slimy to portray his knowledge of the streets and city life. Her diction was poor; likewise her pacing of words for emphasis and to give significance to statements was very poor. She mispronounced words and kept the characters so stereotyped that it was work to listen. I got so very tired of hearing supposedly intelligent people saying things like ?choo? instead of ?you?. One gets the feeling this narrator is young and inexperienced. At one point she read that a character had secreted a paper away (authors meaning: the person concealed it or put it away) the narrator pronounced the word as if the word meant secretion, i.e. the person oozed the paper away. I just felt as if this narrator did not do the story justice and did not know how to read for the characters as black people without using stereotypical intonation. I would not listen to another book read by this narrator.



    8 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lee Barnes Philadelphia, PA 01-27-05
    Lee Barnes Philadelphia, PA 01-27-05 Member Since 2004

    Book reader

    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
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    29
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    "Great"

    Bravo!!! Loved the characters and wished them a happy life. The storyline shows that life goes on with all its joys and hardships and friendship endures forever.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dan Tacoma, WA, USA 01-26-05
    Dan Tacoma, WA, USA 01-26-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    35
    ratings
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    9
    9
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    "Choose this one!"

    Terrific plot and characters, plus beautiful writing and narration. Impossible to put down! Audible, please offer other books by the authors.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. Williams NEW YORK, United States 01-02-11
    M. Williams NEW YORK, United States 01-02-11 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    15
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    "Watered Down Beginning, Great Second Half"

    This book did not come to life till chapter 17. I understand the writers wanted to relate the past and college days of each character first, but damn 17 chapters for that? No warm milk needed if you want to be put to sleep fast. Okay, on the positive side, I really enjoyed everything that happened after college life especially when one character took ill, Im sure millions can relate. A sad but positive ending. An okay listen if you have nothing but time to listen.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jodi Yonkers, NY, USA 08-31-07
    Jodi Yonkers, NY, USA 08-31-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
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    11
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    "THE PERFECT NARRATIVE!!"

    This book really touched Every emotion. I truely identified and grew with EVERY one of these women. I shared in their joys fears and pains. Truely a great dipiction of life, love and sisterhood. Best book I have listend to or read!!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
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