BOOK REVIEW (25): A Meeting In The Ladies’ Room

A Meeting In The Ladies’ Room
Sometimes when I read a bunch of romances back-to-back I start to grow cynical. And it doesn’t bode well for each subsequent book…
So to be fair to my romance TBR pile, I took a break with Anita Doreen Diggs’ A Meeting In The Ladies’ Room. I actually started the novel not knowing what to expect genre-wise—as you can see the cover isn’t telling of a romance, yet the back blurb suggests a hint of something…that never transpires the way I thought it would…
Anyway. Now I can say confidently that this is a chick-lit mystery. I say chick-lit only because it has a very self-centered vibe. The heroine, Jacqueline/Jackie Blue is very “all about me” which is fine considering the story is written from her perspective.
I didn’t like Jackie all that much. I try to not judge a character based on whether they were “relatable” or not or “likable” or not…and Jackie was neither. Yet oddly her personality—her story kept me reading, flipping the pages and not in a this-is-so-bad-I-can’t-look-away-it’s-a-train-wreck way.
Jackie was desperate. So painfully desperate when it came to Victor, and it really hurt to read her embarrassing actions and reactions …it was like watching an episode of Girls.
Jackie was also really annoying to read. I mean she was nasty. Her thoughts on almost everyone were snide and backhanded, and as the reader has to see it from her POV there’s no avoiding the fact that she isn’t a very personable person. What I mean is that I wouldn’t want to know Jackie IRL because girrrrl is a beyotch!

I mean the way she treats her enemies couldn’t be worse than then way she treated her friends. Poor Paul and most of the women in the Black Pack were under her fire.
Though tbh some of those women started the fights first, but that doesn’t excuse Jackie’s thoughts–which I had to be forced to read. They were nastier than needed be.
Still I felt for her. Being accused of a crime and having your cushy life thrown out from under you after you worked so hard to get it had me rooting for Jackie even when I also wanted to slap her silly at the same time.
Now the mystery was great, but it wasn’t the focus of the story. The focus was about racial affiliations and navigating through one’s cess pool of past mistakes. Therefore the ending couldn’t have been written better: as much romances as I read, an ending to a novel is only as good as the construction of the plot and characterization up to that final point.
So I would have felt differently if a HEA was shoved in at the end of this book, which thankfully it was not.
My verdict:

(4 stars)

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