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Goodreads⎮Reviewed June 2017
Narrator: AJ Mendez Brooks
Length: 8h 11m
Publisher: Random House Audio⎮2017
Synopsis: Three-time WWE Diva’s Champion A.J. Brooks’ Crazy is My Superpower is a literary memoir chronicling her unlikely rise from 100-pound nerd growing up in extreme poverty and enduring years of abuse to international sex symbol and professional wrestling champion (known as A.J. Lee). A.J. fought against stereotypes, forced the men in her industry to view her with respect, and inspired a huge fan base of over 2 million Twitter followers with her fierce independent streak.
5★ Audiobook⎮ You may not know this about me, but I grew up watching wrestling. From childhood to the present, watching wrestling with my dad has been a way for us to connect. It’s a childhood pastime that has carried me into adulthood. Until now, it has always been a hobby separate from my book world. Crazy is My Superpower changed that for the better.
Like most fans, I know AJ Mendez Brooks as AJ Lee from her time with WWE. Going into Crazy is My Superpower, I was certain that her career would be the only part of the book to interest me. Wow, was I wrong! Mendez Brooks can tell a fantastic story, no matter the topic. Some people are just born storytellers.
Crazy is My Superpower reads like a journal. If you begin this audiobook, go ahead and put your life on hold for the next eight hours. I was enthralled by Mendez Brooks’ captivating storytelling ability. She definitely had a colorful upbringing, but relays it with humor and compassion. I was surprised by how involved in her early life’s story I became. Although this story will obviously be more appealing to existing fans, it could still interest someone with no idea of Mendez Brooks’ identity or fame.
Not only is Mendez Brooks an excellent storyteller, but her story is one worth sharing. She shares intimate details of her family’s experience with poverty and mental illness, as well as her own. It’s important for someone as idolized as Mendez Brooks to help repudiate the stigmas so often associated with mental illness. She obviously understands the influence someone in her position can have. It’s inspiring to see AJ use her “superpower” (and fame) in such a positive way.
The last 30%-ish of the book focused on Mendez Brooks’ wrestling aspirations and eventual success in the WWE. She discussed her time there and her departure openly. She didn’t seem to pull any punches and was quite frank about a few things, including how the blow up between the company and her husband affected her. She didn’t badmouth the company or skirt the issue, but approached it classily and with humor.
This listening experience has improved my opinion of Mendez Brooks tremendously. Not that it was low prior to this; I just hadn’t really considered her outside of her WWE career. What ever Mendez Brooks decides to do now, I’m sure she will be successful at it. Crazy is My Superpower was so entertaining that I hope she will consider putting out more books. She clearly has a skill for writing and the fan base to see it through.
Narration review: Or…If writing doesn’t work out, she could always try a career in audiobook narration! I know it’s nonfiction, but this was the best author narrated audiobook I’ve ever heard. As much as I love the writing, it’s the narration that I’ve been waiting to rave about. Wowza. I was so super duper impressed with Mendez Brooks’ narration. No joke, she could put a lot of professional narrators out of a job. Her tone, comedic timing, inflection,… everything. It was just FLAWLESS. And can we talk about her vocal distinction? The girl did voices and she did them well.
Her narration made Crazy is My Superpower such a treat to hear. It was like candy for my ears. Narrating her own memoir was totally the right call. No one could hear this and not like her. In fact, I may have fallen in love with her a little while listening to her read. This was an amazing listening experience and I cannot recommend the audiobook enough over the physical version of the book. ♣︎
✓ Listen to an audiobook narrated by the author