Surprisingly, this is the first novel that I have read by Mary Monroe and I must say that I really enjoyed it. This novel has all the juicy stuff of past love that hangs around, neglected present love, family jealously, scandal, lies, deceit, double cross and the list goes on.
Christine Thurman’s life hasn’t always been easy. Growing up she was ignored by her parents who left her to do whatever she wanted and she wasted no time taking full advantage of it. She ran with a rough crowd, stole clothes, electronics and cars, did drugs and had sex with countless and nameless boys. But the only person she kept going back to time and time again was Wade Eddie Fisher, who looked like a “low-income Lenny Kravitz.” Wade had big dreams to make it in Hollywood and Christine couldn’t get enough of him. But when Wade ignored her after she chased after him to Hollywood, it was time for her to make a change in her life.
Fast forward a few years later, Christine has met and married Jesse Ray “J.R.” Thurman, a successful businessman/owner/manager of a few video stores. Her life has changed: new friends, designer clothes, dining out at fancy restaurants, fabulous vacations, big house, etc. However, all this is cut short when she becomes the full time caretaker of J.R.’s live in ailing mother and becomes even more exacerbated when his sister and her family move in with them. Christine is beyond her wits. She gets no support from J.R. and feels trapped.
Christine had signed a prenuptial agreement that would leave her next to nothing. So, she decides to fake a kidnapping with the help of Wade (broke and back in town) to get a half a million dollars from J.R. The rest of the story is a series of twists and turns that will keep you wanting more.
Monroe’s descriptions were spot on. The dialogue was realistic and the characters were very well developed. In addition, Monroe handled the past and present scenes flawlessly giving readers the full history of Christine’s and Wade’s relationship. Let’s just say that some folks who don’t mean you any good should be left in the rearview mirror and Wade’s one of those folks.
However, the only thing left unanswered was the reason why J.R. was spending so much time at work. He would leave several hours early before the video store opened and stayed several hours later when it closed. Christine’s friends thought maybe he had another woman but that speculation was never proven. Nevertheless, it was a good and entertaining read!
Some of my favorite lines:
Between sips from a can of Coors Light, he puffed on a thick blunt. A strong haze swirled around his head like a halo. It was some pretty good shit, too. I welcomed the immediate buzz I got from inhaling the secondhand smoke. I hadn’t smelled weed this strong and sweet since I was a teenager, more than ten years ago. But within seconds that halo around his head turned into a dark cloud and was moving in my direction.
I swallowed a huge lump that was threatening to block my throat. Then I held my breath as he dialed the number to the video store that my husband owned and managed.
Rating: 4 stars