Empire star Taraji P. Henson, who plays the inimitable Cookie Lyon on the hit television show, reveals the violence she has suffered at the hands of the men she loved the most in her powerful new memoir.
In Around the Way Girl: A Memoir , the Oscar-nominated actress describes how she was raised poor in a Washington ghetto and how she struggled to break in to acting.
The gritty book begins with Henson’s earliest memory: Her father trying to kidnap her.
Boris Henson, a Vietnam vet who succumbed to addiction, had turned violent, forcing her mother to flee the marriage.
The actress was just four years old when the father she adored dragged his wife, Bernice, into his car, threatening to kill her.
The only thing that saved the terrified woman from being dragged down the street, with her body hanging out of the car, was the quick-thinking action of her sister who snatched the keys from the ignition.
Bernice then took her young daughter and hid out where she thought Boris wouldn’t think to look for them – with his sister at her house in a small Maryland town.
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