The Real Brooklyn Darkchild

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Shameless Hoodwives: A Bentley Manor Tale by De'nesha Diamond and Meesha Mink

Posted on February 5, 2009 at 2:40 PM

What can I say except BAM???
You better Duck;
'Fore them 5 stars leave your behind Star Struck...
The Hoodwives are back with a vengeance, and just like its Desperate predecessor, there is More Ish than a Little Bit with these Project Chicks.

Look up Crack Ho in the dictionary; there must be a picture of Takiah there. When she shows up on her grandma Ms Cleo’s doorstep with her daughter but without a Real Plan, you know something is about to go down, and it does. Ms Cleo tries everything in her power to get Takiah to straighten up her act, even going so far as to set up mandatory counseling sessions with her pastor, but Takiah doesn’t believe in that Jesus junk, and we soon can see why. God’s ways are not our ways, and His plans aren’t ours. No Weapon Formed Against Me Shall Prosper, it says in the Bible, but who or what is against Takiah? It's Way More than just her ex-husband. Has her past made her irredeemable or will she accept Salvation before it’s too late for her OR her daughter?

Woo Woo, Lexi’s Too Ghetto For Words sister, falls for the dentist she works for. With marriage in their future, Woo Woo can’t believe she made such a good catch. Too bad she can’t get Hassan out of her mind. Suburban living seems dull in comparison to the non-stop drama of Bentley Manor; plus, Woo Woo is afraid her new husband prefers the now dignified Woo Woo that she herself cannot stand. Will she risk her new found good life and continue creeping around with Hassan or will Woo Woo knuckle down and make the best of the life she really thought she wanted? And what dark secret about Hassan’s true identity are they both concealing? Will it blow up in Woo Woo and Hassan’s faces?

Keisha is Smokey’s Who Even Knew That Crackhead Had A Wife??? Trying to hold her family together while her husband steals their Couch Of The Month and the kitchen appliances that don’t even belong to them is slowly killing Keisha. Oh, she makes enough money doing hair in her kitchen, on paper anyway, but how much is enough when you have to keep replacing the same ish over and over again? Smokey’s brother Shakespeare, who lost the love of his life Devani at the end of <i>Desperate</i>, tries to provide much needed emotional and financial support to Keisha while Holding It Down for Smokey (the best he can anyway). He even finances Keisha's Beauty School, which brings out the Green Eyed Monster in Smokey. He's afraid she'll finally leave him. Will she? And is Smokey imagining things or are Keisha and Shakespeare really getting Way Too Tight???

Finally there’s Princess. Blessed with the voice of an angel and a BFF Lucky, these are the only good things going for Princess in a life jam packed with repeated molestations. Her cries for attention/tales of abuse fall on her mother’s deaf ears, and the only other person who believed Princess has since passed on. Princess wishes she could get over the trauma of her past and have a normal relationship with a boy, but as long as her mother has a “man” she knows she’ll never be safe. A chance encounter with an up-and-coming music producer seems promising. Will Princess’s dreams of R&B success come true or will her mother Queen eff up this opportunity also? And will Princess learn to forgive her mother, or is a darker, more ominous future in store for them both?

I am madly in love with the Bentley Manor franchise. Mink and Diamond never disappoint; and they have done Absolute Wonders with the often trite and hackneyed stereotypical ‘Hood scenarios. Their characters have a depth and breadth that is both refreshing and captivating all at once. No one does Hood Tales better. Best of all, SOMEone finally has a Happy Ending, solving my Number One Complaint about the first book. Run, don’t Walk, and pick up your copy now.
Next up: <i>The Hood Life</i>.

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