A Chance With You
by Yahrah St John, contemporary (2013)
Kimani, $6.50, ISBN 978-0-373-86326-6
I have mentioned in previous reviews of Yahrah St John's books for Kimani that her plotting leaves much to be desired. Well, A Chance With You breaks new grounds in that very little of it makes sense at all. It's like reading about people from a vastly different culture or maybe even from another planet because these characters, especially the hero, do really bizarre things that advance the plot via lots of screaming and bickering but don't make sense even a bit.
Okay, let's start at the beginning. Raina Martin's twin sister Alexa dies at the start of the story, leaving Raina her six-year old daughter Zoe to care for. When Raina asks about Zoe's father, she manages to get a name from Alexa - Spencer Davis - with Alexa's assertion that Spencer can help her on this matter. Alexa then dies, the luckiest character in this story as she flees this whole mess with her dignity intact.
Raina equates Spencer being able to help to Spencer being the father of Zoe. Therefore, she has a lawyer submit a formal, uh, request to Spencer for a paternity test. Oh, Raina doesn't want the money, you see, she wants someone to help with the care of Zoe. It's, after all, always better to let a man she doesn't know care for Zoe instead of, say, hiring a caregiver. So what if Raina isn't hard up for money and therefore can pay for a caregiver? How else would she meet Spencer and shag that man, after all?
Spencer and Raina bump into each other before the lawyer's letter arrives at his desk, but she can't tell him anything because she doesn't think it'd be nice or proper to break the mood of... something, I guess, even if it's just the two of them mutually thinking inside their heads how hot the other person is. Why break the magic and the anticipation of the upcoming sex scene, right?
When Spencer receives the letter, he immediately gets moody because Raina didn't say anything when they met, so this proves that she is just another faithless whore like all other women in the world! Never mind that she didn't really do anything at that point - he just knows, and don't you all forget it! He has slept with many, many whores in the past, after all, so he knows. When they do meet again, he assures her that he isn't the man that boinked Alexa and dumped her. To prove it, he makes a move on her. That will show her that he's really not the fanny rat like they all say he is!
He claims that he doesn't remember Alexa, but actually, he does. Alexa is that woman that had an affair with his dead bro - that man was married back then - and Spencer now realizes that Alexa must be trying to call Spencer to get Cameron's number back then because she was pregnant. Oops, he might have ruined the poor darling's life by putting his bros-before-hos policy in action. Never mind, he will do the rational thing. He would secretly order his own paternity test to determine whether Cameron really was Zoe's father. Why? Well, we need an excuse for Raina to screech at him later about why he's all so secretive and stupid, that's why. And when they do screech and pout at one another, bringing up all those dead people, Spencer gets horny and wants to have sex. Why? I don't know, I guess all that talk about his dead bro turns him on?
Meanwhile, Raina is like, okay, so Cameron is the baby daddy, and he's dead. Okay, bye, she'll just go away, because, I don't know, maybe the voices in her head tell her that she doesn't need anyone to help with Zoe anymore. She doesn't want money, because she's not a greedy whore so don't you judgmental readers forget it. Spencer is like, hell no, maybe he should sue for custody of Zoe on behalf of his dead bro, even if he spent much of the story up to that point wishing that Zoe would just vanish so that he can get it on with Raina ASAP.
I can go on and on, but that would mean I'd be giving away the rest of the story, and I have better things to do. Oh, and one more thing: in addition to having motivations and thought patterns that would make sense perhaps only to Teletubbies, Spencer also blames Alexa entirely for the affair with his bro. You see, she walked around in skimpy dresses, just begging for it, and, clearly, the married Cameron couldn't be blamed because, I don't know, maybe the evil whore Alexa used her hypnotic powers to force his pee-pee into her honey pot to knock her up. So, really, everything that went wrong in this story is Alexa's fault! There is nothing undignified, naturally, about our hero blaming a dead woman for his own nonsense, as we all know men can't do anything wrong at all.
Okay, so maybe the author doesn't realize that her characters are behaving like raccoons on crack despite having published a number of books to her name. This brings me then to another question: this book has an editor, right? What, that editor didn't read this book and realize how broken stupid the whole thing is? Perhaps the poor dear tried, drank six bottles of vodka while trying to repair the book, before saying, "Oh, just stick a fork and publish it - somebody will buy it anyway!"? The publishing process can be so mysterious.
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