May Round Up

Monthly Mini Review

Beach scene - illustrated cover of a Black man laying on a beach towel on the left, with titles in the middle and a Black woman laying on a beach towel on the rightSun of a Beach by Mia Sosa, narrated by Valentina Ortiz & Sean Crisden – C This only-on-audio novella was offered to me for review by Audible Studios. I’ve read and enjoyed Mia Sosa’s books before so I was pretty happy to give it a go. At just over 2 hours of listening time and using a rule of thumb of 30-ish pages to an hour of listening time, I expect a printed version would be maybe 70 or 80 pages at the most. It has an awful lot to do in a very short time and because of that, it did not entirely succeed.

Naomi Reyes works at M-Class magazine which mainly caters to white men. She’s interested in expanding their demographic to be more inclusive and has pitched her boss her ideas. The creative director of the magazine is Donovan Taylor and she don’t get along well but there’s always been a simmering sexual tension underlying their reaction to one another. When their boss teams them up for a “swimsuit edition” at a beautiful private beach resort in the Bahamas, the sparks fly.

Much of the story is setting up the dynamic between Naomi and Donovan. Neither (but most especially Donovan) shower themselves in glory with how they deal with one another. Donovan does something pretty stupid and career-limiting and Naomi tries to drag it out of the ditch as it’s her career on the line too. The turn from “enemies” to “lovers” was way too fast for me. But there wasn’t enough space in the story for anything like that.

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