Stay Loyal by Empress Simone was a great quick read. India, like many women today, is plagued by a man who has no regard for her health, life, or emotions. He cheats on her with various people, even family members, and abuses her despite the fact that she is the mother of his children. Unlike many women who find no way to escape when a man provides for them well and gives them a lifestyle they were not accustomed to, India is a brave woman who uses her own smarts and cunning to escape the hell she is living in. To me, this story was very realistic because not only did Veontrae choose to cheat with other women, he also had affairs with men, which is one of the unspoken happenings within every 'hood. I love the fact that Empress Simone brought HIV to the forefront of her story; from how easily it is passed when people are promiscuous and do not use protection to how it affects innocent lives such as that of the infected person's children. She shows that we should never allow love to get in the way of our common sense when it comes to holding those we love accountable and taking responsibility for our own lives when we know we are dealing with someone who may not be faithful. This is one of the first books I read by this author but I am definitely a new fan.
Kennedy's Awakening is a light-hearted short story about a woman who is pretty much done with love. She is so used to being mistreated that she has a wall up for anyone new that may attempt to come into her life. Kennedy ventures out with her friend and meets a man who puts her in her place...literally and makes her realize the error of her ways. She sulks, of course, but when they meet again, nothing can stop the fireworks that happen between them. This is a great short read that will have you wanting more.