A shocking prologue showing the shooting of a fourteen year old black boy by a white police officer - and it soon becomes clear what this book is about.
The book is unusual in that it has two authors who represent the perspectives of the central characters. It is the story of a friendship between a black journalist and her childhood best friend, who also happens to be the wife of the police officer who shot the boy. In this instance it is the black woman who has the successful career while the white woman struggles financially and also is unable to conceive naturally so is trying to raise funds for IVF treatment. Against the stereotypes, it is the black woman who was brought up with a stable and loving family and strong support network while the white woman is from a dysfunctional family.
Following the shooting incident the friendship is obviously strained. Throughout there are references to the women's childhood and relationship in the shadow of the everyday racism the woman of colour had to overcome, including changing her name to a more acceptable 'white' woman's name. While being interesting, though, the exposition takes the immediacy out of the story and slows the pace somewhat. Some of the events lose their impact and others, while being touching, border on the mawkish and superficial.
This book raises many raw and important points. However, it lacks the depth to make it a really significant book. Good and topical premise that just falls flat.
Published by HQ on 5 October 2021.
Advanced review copy supplied by the publisher.