Friday, July 17, 2009

Thug Lovin by Wahida Clark

Grand Central Publishing: August, 2009
Reviewer: Toni Mac
Rating: 4.5

Readers have been through a lot over the years with Tasha and Trae, Kyra and Marvin, Angel and Kaylin, and Jaz and Faheem. Author Wahida Clark does not disappoint with book four of her Thug series. “Thug Lovin’” finds married couple Tasha and Trae now living in California . Out of the game for good, Trae is looking forward to this new phase in life with Tasha and their three sons. They may have left their lifestyle behind, but drama has followed them clear across the county. Na├»ve mistakes create major problems. Tasha and Trae dared to dream big, but are they equipped to handle the consequences?

Clark writes well, has an ear for dialogue and has concocted yet another lively tale for her rich, memorable characters. And let’s not forget plenty of Clark ’s signature thug lovin’. Initially I wasn’t sure where I was at as I began the novel because of the lapse in time since the release of “Thug Matrimony.” And with little to no reference to how that novel ended, I fumbled through the beginning but quickly caught on. Even so, “Thug Lovin’ is an enjoyable page-turner. There were a few questions left unanswered but I’m sure we’ll get those answers in another installment.

Let’s hope Clark has more novels in her. Any author who can make readers love thugs has talent to spare!

Darkness In The Mirror by Erica Lewis

Urban Soul: February, 2009
Reviewer: Toni Mac
Rating: 4

What you don’t know won’t hurt you. But what happens when you find out? Ondie Reid’s life hasn't been typical. Having developed schizophrenia courtesy of genetics, Ondie has managed to have a somewhat normal life with the aid of medication and therapy. She even had a meaningful relationship that resulted in a daughter, Maya, and a marriage proposal until…her mother told her fiancee of her disease. Ondie and her former fiancee, Dexter, have maintained a friendly relationship. In fact, Ondie thinks now is the time for them to reignite what they once had. But what Ondie doesn't know is that Dexter has been secretly seeing her sister. Will the discovery of their relationship send Ondie over the edge?

“Darkness in the Mirror” is an emotionally stirring look at the human side of mental health, focusing on the struggles and hopes of one family affected by schizophrenia. It was a pleasure to read. I’m happy to see an author tackle a subject not often addressed.