Brandi Davis, born and raised in Southeld, Michigan, is an author, motivational speaker and a prison reform activist. Davis, the daughter of legendary street hustler and the girlfriend of a notorious drug dealer, was no novice to street life. After her
child’s father suddenly died in federal prison, she faced the challenge of maintaining
the lavish lifestyle he provided. With her back up against the wall, Davis accepted an invitation to enter the drug game and became extremely successful. Life was grand until Davis was caught red-handed with 27 kilos of freshly packaged cocaine, landing her a ten year sentence in federal prison.
After serving close to a decade behind bars, Davis has decided to share her life
experiences to warn others about the danger of poor choices. With her powerful voice
and bona de street credibility, she has captivated the attention of youth and adults
across the nation. Exposing the naked truth and deadly consequences of street life, her
heartfelt story has become an anchor used to save the lives of many of today’s troubled
Check out this recent interview that Brandi Davis gave
1) Please introduce yourself to our readers and let them know a little about your new book “The High Price I Had To Pay, Volume 4.”
My name is Brandi Davis. I’m a 34 year old, native of Detroit, Michigan. My book “The High Price I Had To Pay, Volume 4” is a memoir about my life and the experiences that led to my imprisonment.
2) Tell us why you decided to write this book and why you feel the message enclosed is important?
I decided to write a book about my life to bring awareness to the epidemic that I’ve seen in our judicial system. While incarcerated in federal prison for 7 1/2 years, I’ve watched a transition in the prison population. The age of the women coming in has grown younger and younger for non-violent, drug crimes. I listened to some of the girls stories and they really touched my heart.Many of them are serving double digits, and some even Life behind bars! I can relate to their experiences and how they got involved in the fast life. This led me to share my story, so I could help prevent others from making the same mistakes that we did.
3) Describe a little about what your life was like growing up in Detroit?
My life growing up in Detroit was kind of different from your typical middle class family. My father was a drug dealer who provided a good living for his household. From the outside looking in, you would think that I came from a hard working family. But in all actuality, my father was heavily involved in a criminal lifestyle. I didn’t know this until I grew up and heard stories about my dad. So I would say, even though I grew up in the suburbs, my life was far from typical.
4) What kind of influence did your father have on your life? Would you describe it as good or bad? Explain.
My father had a huge influence on my life. I admired him greatly. As a result, I was attracted to men who emulated his lifestyle. I was inspired by the drive my father had and the way he took care of our family. He was what I considered to be the “ultimate hustler,” yet he was quite a gentleman. Growing up, I aspired to have a man that treated me like my daddy treated my mother. But in all actuality, the lifestyle my dad provided was a gift and a curse. I never wanted for anything and was spoiled with expensive gifts and attention. Yet at the same time, I was exposed to an addictive lifestyle that came along with lots of consequences.
5) Tell us a little about why you decided to try your hand in the drug game?
I tried my hand in the drug game thinking I was being a loyal girlfriend. I was dating a guy from Chicago who had some issues in his hometown. He needed to quickly move some work outside of Chicago, so I decided I would help him out. I had never sold drugs a day in my life. I was surprised how easy it was to make a lot of money swiftly. At the time, I never knew my actions would cost me my life. I now realize I was extremely naive and I didn’t think through the consequences.
6) What was the most difficult about serving a 10 year bid in the FEDS?
While I was in prison, being away from my son for 7 1/2 years was the hardest thing for me to deal with. When I was arrested my son had just turned 3 years old, so I left a toddler behind. It broke my heart knowing that I was going to miss out on so much of his life. Till this day, I have not completely forgiven myself for leaving my son, due to my poor choices.
7) What message do you want to leave readers with who read your book?
I want my readers to be cautious of the decisions they make in life. Sometimes we don’t think things through before we act. This can be detrimental! Love is also blind and we tend to move on our emotions, instead of our intellect. Therefore, we must watch the company we keep, because everyone doesn’t have the same intentions or love that we have for them. Life is too short to live on the edge, especially when you have children! Our decisions in life don’t only affect us, they also effect our loved ones too. Therefore, I caution my readers to cherish their lives and don’t choose life in the fast lane! It only leads to two things, death or prison.
Lights, camera, action…
Tamara Collins is poised to become the next great American actress. The problem is Hollywood doesn’t know that just yet…..and since her bills aren’t paying themselves, Tamara signs on to star in the new stageplay, It Should’ve Been Me. Get in, get out, get paid…that’s all Tamara wants to do. But her co-stars – including Donovan Dobbs, her ex that left her at the altar and Camille Woods, a young starlet with a serious grudge – could make this the worst decision Tamara’s ever made.
Whatever it takes…
Playwright/producer Gwen Tanner Weinstein has decided if her neglectful husband can’t give her love, she’ll take his money. And use it to make her stageplay dreams come true. She’s put together an amazing cast, sold out shows across the country and is ready to take her rightful reign as one of the top play producers in the country. If only she can keep the drama contained to the stage….and that sexy young merchandising guy out of her bed….
About the Author
NYT Bestselling Author Reshonda Tate Billingsley
ReShonda Tate Billingsley is the author of multiple books, including The Perfect Mistress and Sinners & Saints (also with Victoria Christopher Murray). ReShonda has also worked in the theater world, both behind the scenes and on stage.
NYT Bestselling Author Victoria Christopher Murray
Victoria Christopher Murray is the author of multiple books, including Lust and Fortune & Fame (also with ReShonda Tate Billingsley). The winner of the NAACP Image Award for her novel, Stand Your Ground, she is always working on her next novel.
About Hope McGill
Hope McGill grew up in New York City’s famed neighborhood of Harlem. She began writing at the age of sixteen, but her love of literature began as a child. Reading has always been a means of escape for her. Curling up with a good book helped her to explore the world and meet fascinating people. As she grew older, her appetite for reading grew immensely and the books became more diverse. She began to read books such as, J. California Cooper’s, Life Is Short But Wide, Treasure E Blue’s, Harlem Girl Lost, Octavia Butler’s Bloodchild, as well as the classic, Manchild In The Promised Land by Claude Brown.
The excitement and joy of reading these various authors inspired her to begin writing. Her stories feature real people with real lives, real problems, and extraordinary passion. She wants her work to offer comfort in times when things don’t appear as if they are working out. Her passion for people, music, art, and life, fuel her writing. In the future, she would like to share her personal experiences with young women, by mentoring them or working with community-based programs.
Q & A with Hope The Novelist
- What inspired you to write? I started writing short stories because I wanted to see regular characters in true to life sizes with flaws.
- Why are you on the cover of your book? My graphic artist had a hard time finding a plus size model in photo stock. Photo stock is a collection of photos used for graphic designers. I couldn’t afford to pay for a model so I used myself.
- Why did you use song’s as chapter titles? I am lover of good music. Music makes me feel good. It sets the mood and lays down the foundation for a good story.
- How do you develop the characters? I like to people watch. Some of my characters have come from strangers on the street, others from past experiences.
- What kinds of books did you love to read as a child? Okay, so this is going to sound really weird but I like my stuff juxtaposed. I would start off reading V. C Andrews and Judy Blume and then pick up a Donald Goines or Iceberg Slim novel. I had to read them in that order too…from one extreme to the next. When I listen to music it’s in the same fashion. I might start of with Sade and then flip it to MOP. My mind just sort of functions best that way.
- Will there be a Peals Part II? Absolutely! Stay tuned.
*Visit WWW.HOPEMCGILL.COM where you will be able to purchase “Pearls” by Hope McGill and all of Hope The Novelist’s publications. Make sure to come by often for updates.