Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Excess Baggage-Sean Gardner

Excess Baggage
Sean Gardner
Everlast, 2009, $14.95
ISBN: 9780982158098

Record executive Tara Stevens leaves the New York scene after munching on the Big Apple for Los Angeles and the Left Coast as a V.P of the Hip-Hop Promotions of Big-Time Records. There she reconnects with her high school boyfriend advertising director Dorian Daniels.

His best friend attorney Christian James is tired of the lame date scene. When a teen rams into the car of Registered Nurse Nona Jones, her vehicle hits Christian’s wheels. They hit it off figuratively. Although attracted to one another, neither is aware they will also meet in a courtroom re the Jackson memorial case.

However, Dorian and Christian have issues that keep each from committing to the woman they respectively love. Tara and Nona want more from Dorian and Christian, but neither is able to move past the Excess Baggage that loads down their hearts.

Rotating viewpoint, aptly titled Excess Baggage is a wonderful contemporary African-American romance with four strong protagonists. Each, especially the males, carry bags as the back cover sums the plot with its vivid depiction of bags of frustration, bitterness, disappointment, neglected, sex, envy and shame. Yet built on those lower two bases of the pyramid is enthusiasm, attraction and at the top love if they give their respective relationships a chance. Fans will root for the two couples to make it, but to do so, each especially the males must move past their demons.

Harriet Klausner

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