A fire-breathing diva DJ blows a lot of hot air.
Jones (popularly known as “Miss Jones” or “Jonesy”) is a highly rated radio host on New York’s hip-hop and R&B station Hot 97, an undistinguished recording artist and former lover of rappers Doug E. Fresh and Busta Rhymes. How these credentials justify the young author penning an autobiography remains a mystery. Tedious, self-serving, hobbled by wobbly syntax, haphazard chronology and weird inconsistencies (major figures’ names change disconcertingly), this is memoir as screed, an unmodulated attack on all of the haters and posers and betrayers who have disappointed Miss Jones and futilely tried to impede her progress. There is nothing interesting or useful here to learn about big-market radio or the music business, and, despite Jones’s reputation for withering bluntness, not much compelling dirt on the celebrities in her orbit—including Sean “Diddy” Combs, Patti LaBelle, Isaac Hayes, Lil’ Kim, Fat Joe and Christina Milian (with whom Miss Jones had an animated war of words). Jones chronicles her childhood in an abusive, unstable home environment, and her journey from the projects in Queens to a job at a massively popular radio station is impressive. But the author’s relentless peevishness and defensive hauteur make it difficult to stick with her story. The best bits are the “Jonesy’s Juice” paragraphs that open most of the chapters, in which the author offers her thoughts on various black celebrities; in these concise nuggets of gossipy observation, Miss Jones is a piquant and engaging presence.
Jonesy’s talent lies in the sound bite, and she should stick to radio.