10/4/14

"White Lady". A review

I recently hosted a guest post by Jessica Bell on this blog in which she was promoting her latest novel "White Lady". I don't do this, normally. Hosting promotional guest posts, that is.
But this time, things are different. I read Jessica's book. And loved it. Which explains why I thought it not only necessary to host her promotion—things are difficult enough for us Independent authors, and a helping hand is always welcome— but why I reckon you might enjoy knowing what I as a reader and a fellow writer really thought of "White Lady".
Alright, then.
On her amazon page, Jessica presents her novel like this: "Sonia yearns for sharp objects and blood. But now that she’s rehabilitating herself as a “normal” mother and mathematics teacher, it’s time to stop dreaming about slicing people’s throats. While being the wife of Melbourne’s leading drug lord and simultaneously dating his best mate is not ideal, she’s determined to make it work. It does work. Until Mia, her lover’s daughter, starts exchanging saliva with her son, Mick. They plan to commit a crime behind Sonia’s back. It isn’t long before she finds out and gets involved to protect them. But is protecting the kids really Sonia’s motive?"  
That sounds intriguing enough.
Now, my thoughts. Well, when I started reading Jessica's book, I was a bit dazzled at first by the frequently changing voices. True enough, each new chapter brings up a new point of view—five all in all—, a technique that could end up in a huge mess.
But not here.
That's thanks to Jessica Bell, who shows an amazing strength and authenticity when creating her characters. Yes, some might think they're more than a bit weird, even flawed, but that makes what they have to say sound even truer. And yes, despite their flaws, they are more than loveable.
Even the story, if told with less gusto and talent, could come off as highly unlikely. An overweight teenager girl, her self-deprecating divorced dad, a blood-thirsty maths teacher, her ever-swearing teenage son, a manipulative woman who has left husband and daughter for Botox injections and US-wealth, a drug baron of Turkish origins, a secretive Asian teenage girl are caught up in an improbable whirlwind where crime and sex are put into a blender, stirred, and served.
On the rocks.
Doesn't sound like a book you'd like to read? Think again!
Because Jessica Bell pulls you through her story without hesitating a second, changing voices and scenes with a lightness that can only amaze you. Everything sounds true, genuine, from the thoughts and feelings to the descriptions, i.e. those pieces of reality the different narrators choose to actually see.
For lack of time, I only read the first 80 pages in a first attempt and put the book down, knowing that I wouldn't be able to read the rest—all of it—in a single movement. But when I finally decided to take an afternoon off to read more, well, I single-handedly finished the remaining 200-and-some pages without ever stopping, being dragged from chapter to chapter, sentence to sentence, word to word, mesmerized.
I am sure Jessica, as we all, lacks something.
At least I hope.
Because otherwise, it would be just too infair. Since, in the talent-department, she's holding a straight flush.
Read "White Lady", enjoy it. Because I'm sure you will.

2 comments:

  1. You are just too kind, Dieter. Thank you so much for posting this! <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Your welcome, and I'm just being honest :-)

      Delete