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Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite
Demetrius & Jacqueline Irick are the co-authors of "I'm Finally a Man: A Husband's Journey to Manhood". It is written from both their perspectives, starting with Demetrius's account of his life as a boy and a young man. He was raised in the south during the 1980s in an area where discrimination was still very much alive. Demetrius was a bright and accomplished student who ran into trouble as he was growing up. The hard liquor he and his friends would drink before dances or going out caused personality changes in Irick which made him violent and abusive. A four-year stretch in jail for assaulting the police officers who had arrested him was a sobering and life-changing experience. Another such life-changer was meeting Jacqueline, who had been raised in New York and had very different ideas on the relations between men and women and the role of a husband and father.
The Iricks are both frank and forthright in this inspirational memoir. Demetrius is a brave man indeed who recounts the mistakes and missteps of his youth in the hope that others will benefit from his experience. His story shows how hard work and perseverance can win out over the challenges an ex-con faces finding employment. From the first embarrassing managerial position in McDonald's to his current position as an executive, Irick's story shows what can be done if you have the ambition and drive. Jacqueline's story is equally compelling as she discusses the importance of family, in-laws and, most importantly, communication. I highly recommend it.