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ESSENCE recently partnered with powerhouse artist Ledisi to share the moments that have led the multiple Grammy nominated singer to a greater sense of self, purpose and peace in the upcoming book, Better Than Alright: Finding Peace, Love & Power (Time Home Entertainment Inc.; Hardcover, on sale now for $16.95). Better Than Alright, an innovative collaboration with ESSENCE and Ledisi in her writing debut, is filled with 176 pages of the singer’s personal photos, quotes, lyrics and richly detailed stories of the musician’s journey to acceptance of her beauty, talent and power.

Fans of the singer’s anthems such as “Pieces of Me” and “Bravo,” Ledisi’s recently released single, will enjoy the uplifting and colorful tone of Better Than Alright. Readers searching for rich personal tales enveloped in vibrant prose will also enjoy this innovative book, which begins with Ledisi performing at ESSENCE’s first Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon in 2008 and travels back and forth to chart the journey of a woman who not only endured, but ultimately triumphed in the music business, on her own terms. Better Than Alright includes the singer’s meditations, musings, poetry, and deeply personal essays. Ledisi also contributes many of the dazzling images that illuminate the text.

“Ledisi is a rare jewel to us. She first wowed us with her incomparable voice during our Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon a few years ago and hasn’t stopped since,” said Constance White, ESSENCE Editor-in-Chief. “We then realized there was so much love and power in her lyrics. It was a natural progression for us to collaborate with her on this project. Better Than Alright captures Ledisi’s heart, soul and truth. We know that our readers will find peace, love and power in their own lives inspired by this new literary voice. Ledisi can write! She’s a gifted storyteller.”

ESSENCE, the world’s premier brand for African-American women, has a tradition of introducing new writing talent

beginning in 1974 when Terry McMillan won the magazine’s annual college writing contest. Over the years ESSENCE has introduced a wide range of black women authors from Bebe Moore Campbell to recent National Book Award winner Jesmyn Ward (Salvage the Bones).

Ledisi, who has been described as having a mix of Tina Turner’s energy, Nina Simone’s brilliance, and Ella Fitzgerald’s range, is a multiple Grammy nominee who has quickly connected with ESSENCE readers because of her authenticity and tenacity to strive for success on her own terms. Ledisi’s Better Than Alright promises to be used as a “real life” inspiration to others.

Better Than Alright is available everywhere. For more details or to order a copy, please visit essence.com/betterthanalright.


We all know Ledisi as a great soul/r&b singer. One can say she is among the better voices with inspiring music that touches your soul and heart.  So, as much to my surprise, finding out she has written a book, I was anxious and excited to read it. Better Than Alright:  Finding Peace Love & Power is not your traditional book, it draws you in with poems, quotes, and bits and pieces into Ledisi’s life. Taking you through her journey that got her here today.  With each page, you are able to go through your own journey while experiencing those pivotal moments in Ledisi’s life to either relate or acknowledge experiences you have dealt with.  If you love Ledisi as a music artist you will love this book. Even if you aren’t a fan of Ledisi (you’ll be crazy not to be), this book, for me, was a personal journal that gave me the opportunity to write my thoughts, views, and opinions about my own journey to discover being Better Than Alright: Finding Peace Love & Power.

Kara Jones

My Majic Book Club

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