Turned Out by Angel M. Hunter

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turnedoutPublisher/Date:  Urban Books, June 2007
Genre(s):  Romance, Bisexual
Pages:  262
Website:  http://www.angelmhunter.com

Rating: ★★★½☆ 

The saying goes, “Once you go black, you never go back.”

But in TURNED OUT, the tantalizing novel from Angel M. Hunter, the saying should go, “Once you go clit, you can’t get enough of it.”

That’s the situation with Champagne Rose, a publicist in a long-term relationship with Zyair, a man who would do anything to marry her. They’ve been shacking up for five years, and while they love each other dearly, their love life has become more than mundane. Their routine is the same, the sex is the same – both are clamoring for something exciting to spice up their bedroom boom.

They figure a vacation at an exotic locale is just the ticket. Champagne and Zyair get more than they booked for when a late-night rendezvous for two on the beach ends in a threesome. The addition of an anonymous woman adds just the spark they need, and they return home with a refreshed attitude toward their relationship.

Except Champagne is still thinking about that night. A lot. She wants to know if the pseudo-lesbian fling was just that, or if she really has an attraction to women. It’s something she’s toyed with before, but only in her wildest desires.

Soon Champagne is consumed with thoughts of making love to a woman again — to taste her, please her, to experience the softness and amazing orgasm she had on the beach. When she gets Zyair, who’s more than willing of course, to let her try it again, she’s knows it will be better than before.

But whom will she select to make her fantasy come true?

Hunter’s Turned Out is a pleasurable novel, where the reader can follow a woman’s bi-curious journey. It’s an easy read. Though I was left hanging by the book’s end, I know it’s just a set-up for the sequel to Champagne’s continuing adventures.

And I’ll go along for the ride.

Reviewed December 2008


Sister Girls 2 by Angel M. Hunter

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sistergirls2Publisher/Date:  Urban Books, Mar. 2008
Genre(s):  Contemporary Fiction, Straight Books with Lesbian Characters
Pages:  288
Website:  http://www.urbanbooks.net/angel.html

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

Sequels usually take off where the last novel begins, hopefully with the characters wiser than they were before. This is the case with SISTER GIRLS 2, but author Angel M. Hunter offers a twist from its predecessor by adding new women to the mix.

Wrestling with her sexuality in the last book, Elsie is back with a new job and different goals. She begins Essence of Self, a non-profit organization to benefit young women, and spends most of her time thinking about being a mother. While her biological clock ticks away, Elsie begins realize she made a mistake by letting go of her ex, Summer, and her young daughter. If she hadn’t broken it off, Elsie cold have had the family she wanted. Can she finally make things right between them?

Faith is the counselor employed at Essence, who might need a therapist of her own. She advises women on their issues, but comes home to an empty marriage with her husband Raheem. He saved her from the destructive path she once lived, and will never let her forget it. When she meets a man who loves the new woman she’s become, is it too late for her to save her marriage?

Harmony, the new receptionist at Essence, sees her job as a fresh start. Tired of working dead-end jobs, she wants to make something of herself, and give her three children a better life. Though they all have separate daddies, her boyfriend Shareef has been there for all of them. He wants to give Harmony the world, but she can’t appreciate all he does for their family. Will she figure out that Shareef is truly there for her?

Last but not least is Pastor Bella Gold, who provides a spiritual influence for the center. She struggles with her own demons from her past. Running a church is a responsibility she takes seriously, and feels if her congregation will never accept whom she was before. It gets more complicated when a face from her former days shows up in her pews. Has he come to ruin her chance for redemption?

Hunter’s Sister Girls 2, just like its original, presents readers with four women with pasts they can’t run from. They have to face the truth about their lives, no matter how painful. Unlike Sister Girls, though, it seemed as if the women were more disjointed, but they pull together by the novel’s close. Hunter dug deeper into her characters this time, and it made the experience a little more sisterly.

Reviewed May 2008


Sister Girls by Angel M. Hunter

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sistergirlsPublisher/Date:  Kensington Publishing Corporation, May 2006
Genre:  Contemporary Fiction, Romance, Straight Books with Lesbian Characters
Pages:  304

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

Interracial dating, drug abuse and lesbianism run rampant in SISTER GIRLS, the novel written by Essence best-selling author Angel M. Hunter. These four distressed sistahs have their problems cut out for them in this cookie-cutter plot that comes out a little flat.

Crystal, Susie, Elsie own the New Jersey law firm where Jewell works as a secretary. Although not exactly enemies, the ladies aren’t really that familiar with one another outside of work. But each has her own problems that eventually lead them to create a fast friendship.

Crystal is the former rape victim still holding on to the pain of that unfortunate act. Her nights are sleepless, and when she does lie down, her nightmares begin. By all appearances, she seems put together, but her pain leads to destructive behavior like drinking and dating a married man.

Hard-nosed Susie knows she has a drug problem, but doesn’t know how to stop. It’s all she can do to make it through the day without a hit. But when her fiancé returns with a marriage proposal, she knows she has to give up the white horse.

Elsie, the most easy-going of the four, is trying her best not to move in with her lesbian lover, Summer. It’s not that Elsie doesn’t love Summer; it’s just that she loves her privacy more. And now that Summer’s daughter has come to stay with her permanently, she definitely doesn’t want to step into a ready-made family. Her decision is made all the more complicated when her ex, Jenay, returns to town.

And single-mother Jewell finds herself uncomfortably dating a white man for the first time. But does her discomfort come from being with him or the fact that she still has feelings for her baby daddy?

Hunter’s characters and problems were the center of this sordid tale, but they didn’t exactly shine. Although you could easily relate to their problems, the women seemed one dimensional. And the ending leaves you hanging at the end. You could tell Hunter left it open for a sequel, but I wanted a better conclusion than what I got.

Sister Girls is an easy read, one you could probably finish in a few hours on a lazy afternoon.

Reviewed June 2006