Most hip-hop lovers would agree with author Felicia Pride when she says, “I quote hip-hop lyrics as life-defining mantras. I recall lines and ideas from songs as a way to explain this crazy existence … There’s a hip-hop song that can match any one of my moods, encapsulate my rage, put a smile on my face.”

From De La Soul’s “Me, Myself & I” and Black Sheep’s “The Choice Is Yours” to Pubic Enemy’s “Fight the Power” and Pharcyde’s “Passing Me By,” Pride breaks down how each song has deeply affected her. Of course, Pride doesn’t pretend to include every song that has influenced her, and I know you could make your own list.

And maybe one of the greatest feats of these pages is that by sharing and explaining her picks, she makes you want to recount and relive your own.

Grade: A

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