Rapper T.I. turns novelist with "Power & Beauty"

Wed Oct 19, 2011 7:04pm EDT
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By Sabrina Ford

NEW YORK (Reuters) - It's been a whirlwind month, to say the least, for rapper T.I.

Since being released from custody last month after serving an 11-month stint in jail on weapons charges, the Atlanta-based rapper and actor has put out a new single, begun filming a reality TV series and debuted his first novel. T.I. the rapper is now T.I. the author.

On Tuesday, publisher Harper Collins released T.I's "Power & Beauty: A Love Story of Life on the Streets," an urban-based novel featuring African American characters co-written by frequent celebrity biographer David Ritz.

"I'm proud, ecstatic," T.I. told Reuters about becoming a published author. "I'm always eager to diversify my artistry. It's a great moment."

"Power & Beauty" is a coming of age story of two Atlanta teenagers, raised by the same woman, who are driven into each other's arms amid the grief that follows her death.

When separated, one falls into a life of crime, testing the pair of lovers who never seem to move on from one another.

"Love is the driving force behind so many things, and it inspires so many other emotions," said T.I. of the decision to make a romance central to the story.

The book was completed last year before T.I.'s stint in prison and after more than a year of back-and-forth work with Ritz. T.I. said he and his co-writer did not immediately agree to collaborate after an initial meeting arranged through a mutual record industry friend a few years ago.   Continued...