Black Friend: Essays

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NATIONAL BESTSELLER

From the writer crowned one of the smartest, funniest voices in modern America, this hotly anticipated debut collection of essays offers “a precious glimpse into how Ziwe’s uniquely fearless mind functions” (New York Magazine)

Ziwe made a name for herself by asking guests like Alyssa Milano, Fran Lebowitz, and Chet Hanks direct questions. In Black Friend, she turns her incisive perspective on both herself and the culture at large. Throughout the book, Ziwe combines pop-culture commentary and personal stories, which grapple with her own (mis)understanding of identity. From a hilarious case of mistaken identity via a jumbotron to a terrifying fight-or-flight encounter in the woods, Ziwe raises difficult questions for comedic relief.

From Black Friend’s Introduction:

“Today, I learned that my book is ranked as the #1 new release in ‘Discrimination and Racism’ on Amazon. Wow. This is a huge honor, especially considering my stiff competition in the selfpublished manifestos space. Unfortunately, this victory is bittersweet. I worry that people may get the wrong idea and think that I am pro-racism when in actuality, I am indifferent. Still, I’d love to thank everyone who made this possible. I solemnly swear to write the most discriminatory book in American history. I hope I can make you proud.

“Just kidding . . . I will not marginalize you . . . unless that’s your kink. This book of essays offers moments of extreme discomfort (and the subsequent growth) in my life around the role of ‘black friend.’ Black friends come in all shapes and sizes. Yet the archetype is often a two-dimensional character meant to support the non-black protagonists’ more complex humanity. Some black friends exist as the comic relief, like Donkey in any of the Shrek movies. Some are the sassy friend, like Louise from St. Louis in Sex and the City. Still others are the inexplicably sagacious companion, like Morpheus in The Matrix. It’s impossible for these individual portraits to reflect my complicated reality. To start, they are fictional. One of them is a talking ass. I do not exist just to move plot. While I am a supportive friend, I am not a supporting character. I am the protagonist of my perfectly imperfect story.”

Specification: Black Friend: Essays

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9 reviews for Black Friend: Essays

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  1. Ktdearest

    I both read and listened to this book. Ziwe is on the mark. The section on names and misidentification really was powerful. Stick to the book though…Ziwe sounds mmmm like a valley girl.

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  2. Hunter Banes

    I love Ziwe, I’ve always loved Ziwe, but this book is so good and has made me love her more, plus the reading was amazing! Ziwe has mastered the art of dark and dry comedy. Black Friend Essays is an extremely eye-opening collection of thoughts and experiences that’s somehow also hilarious, regardless of the fact that a lot of her experiences in her life, as a Black woman, aren’t pleasant.My favorite parts of the book included on her thoughts on WikiFeet (go give her 5 stars immediately), the hour and a half chapter on reality television, and the footnotes. Ziwe talks about race as it should be spoken, straightforward, honest, inoffensive.I can’t recommend this book enough. I’m about to order the physical copy!

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  3. Kindle Customer

    Very few times do I read a book cover to cover in one night. I wanted to savor this one over a few nights but it was too good. Ziwe is so entertaining, hilarious and thought provoking

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  4. kiki5026

    Especially for a 63-year-old white woman from the middle of North Dakota! I learned far more than my one black friend had been trying to teach me all these years!

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  5. Demi Lightbody

    I throughly enjoyed reading this book! I can’t wait for more from Ziwe as her ability to make you laugh while discussing gut wrenching topics is an art and genre of it own. I laughed but also the general points that were made weren’t lost. I’ve recommended this book to almost everyone I know. I genuinely cannot wait to read more from Ziwe or watch her on my television again (hint: Showtime or some other network)

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  6. Michelle

    This arrived today and I cannot put it down! Ziwe’s iconic and unique humor shines through paper brighter than Fenty Killawatt highlighter. Her collections of essays are captivating, hilarious, thought provoking and self reflecting.10, 10, 10’s.💐🌹💐🪻💐🌷💐

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  7. Amazon CustomerAmazon Customer

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  8. Brooke

    I saw Ziwe on WWHL and loved her energy so I decided to buy her book as it was advertised on the show. All I can say is WOW. From the beginning, she hooked me and I wanted to know more so I kept reading. I’m currently halfway through the book and only stopped to work and write this review, LOL. If you’re up for reading about someone expressing their raw life and possibly seeing things through a different lens, I would 100% recommend this book.

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  9. Christina M.

    I’ve been a fan of Ziwe’s show for a while and have followed her on social media for years. While I always knew she was funny, her book took my admiration to a whole new level. These essays are not only incredibly humorous but also remarkably thought-provoking. They strike a perfect balance between insightful personal anecdotes and side-splitting observations. Once I started reading, I couldn’t put it down until I reached the last page.

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