Book Review: Brenda Jackson’s “Solid Soul"
By: Anastasia Vaughan
Brenda Jackson’s Solid Soul is a passion filled romance novel that despite amazing writing skills lacks a certain amount of romance to it. When you open a romance novel your expectation is for the immediate release of romance to explode across captivating passion filled pages, in which as soon as love prevails its swept away from obstacles than brought back to life by two rhythmic hearts that can no longer seem to beat without each other. Unlike other forms of writing romance writing has a very distinct format to it which is predominantly centered on the readers figuring out just how the romance has happened and why these two people simply must be together. The two main leading characters of Brenda Jackson’s Solid Soul are Kylie Hagan and Chance Steele. Kylie is described by Jackson as a youthful single mother of one who owns a flower shop which a Mr. Chance Steele just so happens to enter problems blazing with their two vibrant teenagers who they think just so happen to be dating. The entire concept of two teens Marcus and Tiffany falling madly in love is a rouse used to draw Kylie and Chance together in an attempt to distract them from their strict parenting style.
Though the plot is wonderful the writer still fails the readers in a few ways. For instance the biggest problem with the book lies within the character Chance Steele. Though Steele appears likeable at first his on going habits of extreme cheapness make Jackson’s words a turn off where they could have been an absolute turn on. Chance Steele is a wealthy CEO who can’t seem to think Kylie is worth more than a Burger King lunch, a camping trip in which she is sentenced to pay for the most expensive supplies (first aid) which took her four days to get by the way, and doesn’t believe in her love enough to think that she deserves have a benefit ticket which cost upwards of one hundred to two hundred fifty dollars a piece. The most up setting aspect of benefit would be the fact that Chance waits at the door for her arrival trying to claim her as his own without asking her on a bonafide date. It would seem that this male heroin is always looking to have everything only as long as it is convenient to him. Chance does to little to receive Kylies love.
Kylie Hagan is quite loveable in the very beginning of the book. However, she is far too insecure for her own good and often doesn’t seem to place much self worth on herself. The obstacle of the children gets super annoying around the middle of the book and by the end of the book the readers still won’t have the faintest clue what draws these two together other than sexual attraction (or the kids of course).Kylies near virginal sex life is further insulted by the way she allows Chance to disrespect her by treating her as if she should run right into his arms at the first wink he gives her. Brenda Jackson follows the cliché of the over heated sexualized African American stereotype that Black people can’t keep their hands off each other long enough to create a relationship founded off substance. Personally I expected a deeper look than their desires, basic day to day lifestyles and hit or miss barely in existent dates. Brenda Jackson should have challenged herself to go deeper however; the sad truth about romance novels in general today is that we are not reading through an era in which you get a thorough glimpse into every aspect of their well developed world but a mere surface scratch of what’s going on. Effort has become a rarity replaced by steamy words with sexually erotic over stimulated feelings. Romance writers of today have often forgotten that even “Gone with the Wind” was once a romance novel. There is a saying if I aim for the moon and miss at least I cans still land amongst the star writers of who tired failed in being epic yet succeeded in being great.
I rate this book as average as I see Brenda Jackson as no better or worst than any of the other African American fiction writers on the market. She gets a dry “C” as an overall grade.