October I was lying on the hard, cold floor in the bathroom of the famous Chinese bistro Mr. Chow in Beverly Hills. It is one of the most upscale and renowned restaurants in the world, yet I was at the lowest point of my life.
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By Karrine Steffans. Amistad, pp. Confessions of a Video Vixen isn't the first story about a starry-eyed babe who gets caught up and turned out by the glamorized world of entertainment. In fact, Karrine Steffans has penned an all-too-familiar tale: Pretty girl with low self-esteem uses her body to find fame, fortune and love in all the wrong places with all the wrong guys.
Underneath this graphic din of sex, drugs and hip-hop is the memoir of a young woman struggling to survive the trappings of stardom. The streets of Hollywood, New York and South Beach are littered with women who have perfect figures and broken dreams. Confessions doesn't break any new ground in that regard.
The story begins at Steffans' darkest moment in the bathroom of a Beverly Hills hotspot. It's not a very pretty scene for a supposedly well-paid and well-connected video vixen, but it's the starting point of a long road to redemption. From there, she takes us back to her childhood in the Virgin Islands. A mother Steffans simply hated moved her to Florida and eventually forced her to relocate to Arizona to live with a father who had abandoned them years earlier.
There was an abusive marriage to a struggling rap star in Arizona, which produced a child but ultimately ended in divorce. Steffans moves to Los Angeles to make a better life for herself and her son, and the story goes downhill from there.
Unfortunately, Steffans didn't know it. She discovered the power of a beautiful body and a desire to please influential men. She was meeting some of the biggest names in entertainment and was on her way to becoming a star in her field, appearing in music videos with some of the hottest rappers around. She even co-starred in a movie. Her lifestyle came at a price. She often found favor with men in exchange for her sexual favors. Her antics provided her with money to pay both her bills and her more lavish indulgences; but at times, she was nothing more than a sultry party favor.
But, Steffans went along for the ride — literally. Though the book is billed as a "tell-all memoir," Steffans admits that she isn't telling everything. Still, she shares intimate details of trysts with well-known rap artists, athletes and entertainers. There are familiar names to go with the sex. Steffans, of course, can't keep pace as the alcohol, drugs and sex take their toll.
Her celebrity friends and lovers abandon her, and after hitting rock bottom, she begins the long road back to a more fulfilling life that no longer depends on how well an influential man regards her. Suffice it to say, there's a happy ending. Still, Confessions is an easy, entertaining read, almost like getting lost in the pages of the National Enquirer while waiting in a crowded checkout line.
The book works better on audiotape. Steffans does the narration herself, and the authenticity of telling her life's story comes through. More important, though, the book is a cautionary tale that contains a timeless message to a new generation of women who believe shaking their rumps on a rap video can lead to a better life. It's not that easy. Most Popular.
Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans
By Karrine Steffans. Amistad, pp. Confessions of a Video Vixen isn't the first story about a starry-eyed babe who gets caught up and turned out by the glamorized world of entertainment. In fact, Karrine Steffans has penned an all-too-familiar tale: Pretty girl with low self-esteem uses her body to find fame, fortune and love in all the wrong places with all the wrong guys. Underneath this graphic din of sex, drugs and hip-hop is the memoir of a young woman struggling to survive the trappings of stardom.
Confessions of a Video Vixen
Confessions of a Video Vixen is a memoir written by Karrine Steffans which details the first 25 years of her life. Part tell-all covering her sexual liaisons with music industry personalities and professional athletes, and part cautionary tale about the dangers of the otherwise romanticized hip-hop music industry, it caused considerable controversy in some circles. Confessions of a Video Vixen recounts Steffans' life from her troubled girlhood living in poverty in St. Thomas , through abuse, drugs, rape and living as a teenage runaway who turns to stripping and hip hop modeling to support herself and, later, her young son. Originally published in by Amistad , an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, the book was immediately a New York Times bestseller. The paperback edition includes bonus material, and also made the NYT bestseller list.