Sunday, October 3, 2010

Natural Born Hustler-Nikki Turner

Natural Born Hustler
Nikki Turner
One World (Ballantine), Oct 5 2010, $13.00
ISBN: 9780345523600

Desember Day comes home to hear her normally go with the flow mom Angie yelling at her latest husband, construction firm CEO Joe Livingstone for coming home drunk. Once gain, Desember vows to herself she will never depend economically on a three legged male; even Fame Marauder who she hated when they attended Carver Elementary School. Instead she will sell anything to achieve monetary independence.

Fame and Desember go to see the movie Dreamgirls, but leave early. They enter his car when shots are fired. He is critically wounded with a bullet to his lungs and rushed to a hospital fighting for his life. His mother Francine blames Desember and threatens to kill her. While Fame lies in ICU, Desember looks back on their relationship and wonders how they got to this point. Soon afterward she meets the paternal side of the family including her dad for the first time and learns that being a Natural Born Hustler is in the gene pool.

This is an entertaining street lit contemporary novella starring a fascinating chip off the old block (see A Hustler’s Wife and Forever A Hustler’s Wife). Although the ending sets up a sequel as much as a partial a finale to a strong urban tale, this character driven story line is fast-paced from the moment Fame is shot and never slows down as Desember (and readers) meets her roots and much more.

Harriet Klausner

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