Pamela D. Beverly

Author of Contemporary Romance & Children’s Books

I just finished reading the novel, My Joy (California Love, Book 1) by Suzzette D. Harrison. I first have to say that she must be schizophrenic (in a good way) because although I don’t “know” Ms. Harrison except as a fellow writer, her depiction of this beautifully coiffed and put together woman takes street life to a whole ‘nother level. Eye-opening and I must say, hilarious at moments, Ms. Harrison can turn a phrase that will have you shaking your head one second and laughing out loud another. At times, you’ll be laughing and shaking your head at the same time, along with wiping your eyes from tears of Joy–uh-huh, a play on words of the main character’s name, Pearl Joy, known simply as Joy. I’ll let you read about why.

Joy Matthews is a thirtyish, full-figured, curvaceous black woman who works in an upscale gentlemen’s club, The Hourglass, which caters to the “ballers and shot-callers” that prefer their women that way. Joy certainly has her issues and she interacts with a curious cast of characters, her female colleagues and the men with which they mix and mingle. I liked that Joy was a “’round-the-way” girl, without being ghetto. To me, there is a difference.

She doesn’t trust men and utilizes them to get what she needs. Not as a gold-digger but physically. Let’s just say that she has commitment issues, lol. I loved the names of her characters, for example, Zaki, Velle, Day Day, Diamond Divine (you’ll find out why she’s called that) and R.C., just to name a few. Her mother, Lucretia, is a trip as well, along with her other relatives and friends. The main male protagonist is Quinton (Que) Daley, a friend from Joy’s childhood who has made his presence known and is all grown up now. One scene in the book left me with my mouth wide open for a moment and then yelling, “Yes!” the next moment. It was only one of quite a few throughout the book.

Joy has a side hustle, actually more than just a side hustle. She is making her way through a culinary externship. Ms. Harrison makes me hungry talking about the food that she prepares, lol.

I don’t like to give away a lot when reviewing books but you should be able to tell by what I’ve said so far that I really enjoyed this book. If you’re in the mood to delve into how the other half live (meaning wealthy men) and the women they “interact” with, get a copy! There’s a whole lot more that I didn’t even cover. And it’s Book One so it doesn’t end here but my review does!

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