Review: Nichole Perkins celebrates Southern Black womanhood

“Sometimes I Trip On How Happy We Could Be,” Nichole Perkins (Grand Central Publishing)

“Sometimes I Trip On How Happy We Could Be” is about seeking, nay, demanding pleasure for oneself. Nichole Perkins shares essay after brilliant essay on life as a Southern Black woman learning to own her own power.

The poet and Nashville native expertly uses pop culture as a lens through which to examine her life, and mostly her sexuality. Through musings on everything from reality television to sexual fantasies to “Frasier” to body image issues to Miss Piggy, Perkins paints a deeply personal and unapologetic portrait of her journey to becoming the strong, empowered woman she is today.

One of the most fearless books out there, it opens with a young, inexperienced Perkins navigating sex and love and ends with a woman who knows exactly what she wants and isn’t afraid to go and get it. Through additional mediations on race, religion, mental health, and femininity, Perkins presents herself as a woman who has allowed herself the space to grow and change, but also one who has remained steadfast in demanding the best possible life for herself. She is also not shy in sharing with readers some of the extreme hardships she has been through.

Above all else, this is a book about desire, and more specifically, shamelessly owning that desire. Utilizing humor, raw honesty, and an intimate writing style with which readers can easily connect, Perkins has crafted a powerful memoir that is well worth the read.


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