Celebrating Black Romance, one year on …

Spring is in the air and there are so many great black romance releases, either already dropped or on their way out. In celebration of this fact, I wanted to do a check-back-in with three proliferate author friends one year after their ‘author spot‘ on the blog. Let’s see where they’re at in 2019, and what hot new releases they’ve got for us. Join me in celebrating this black romance space with Angelia Vernon Menchan, Aja, and J.L. Campbell.

Angelia Vernon Menchan

First up is a writer, public speaker and mentor. Angelia Vernon Menchan is an incredibly diverse and proliferate writer of black romance. This author has published a plethora of books, around ‘34 printed books and an additional 124 ebooks through her publishing company, MAMM Productions’. She is also the Co-founder of Honorable MENCHAN Media.

Angelia’s romance writing is diverse and I love her work for that. She is always branching-out and trying knew stuff. One of my recent favorites (and case in point) has been this one, Confessions of a Love Addict.  

Excerpt from my Review:

“… Marcus is a dude who’s determined to change his ways, and make himself a better man, so that he can truly step up for his son, his family and hopefully find a woman with whom he can create a meaningful and lasting partnership. He’s in search of ‘lasting love’. And, falling for Drika was a perfect match. They were great for each other. She was this carefree, non-judgmental, business savvy tattoo artist, willing and able to give him enough leeway to find his way out of his relationship funk. Their attraction was bold, sensual and lovely. I repeat, this book has everything I like in a black romance. The seriously sexy and sweet. The family ties that support, and the power of love to transform. It is a great read, from an author I admire greatly. “

Angelia’s recent releases have also been exploring other inter-generational relationships in Centre City, a series which has spanned mature love, with the Blacks, to young love, with Rashad and Lashah. This author has so much on the go, her latest release is a follow-on from another series. This week, Angelia has dropped ‘Rootedher follow-on to Grounded, a story packed with realness and solid life lessons.

Rooted is out now, available in multiple formats, make sure you check it out ….

Aja

Author Aja has been one busy lady. Aja is a writer of ‘sensually erotic and passionate women’s fiction‘. This award-winning author released Love’s Required earlier this year to critical acclaim. A story of brokenness and healing through love, it tells the story of Cami and Logan’s journey to wholeness. In Love’s Required, Camille has had her heart well and truly broken by a playa, only to have a dude, who she’s known a while and who is tired of his old playin’ ways, unxpectedly step-up and into her life, healing her brokenness. Their re-connection, old friends to lovers, couldn’t have happened under more imperfect circumstances however (no spoilers) their journey is beautiful. Logan is good for her. He offers the redemption and path to healing Camille needs. This is a very sweet black romance, one I can only recommend to check out and read.

Aja has another new release which has just dropped, Love Taps, which I hope you’ll check out as well in the link below.

Aja’s Author Note: ‘Love Taps’

‘Frankie and Jackson’s story was endearing to me. It started with love that was sure and true, with ambition, hopes and dreams … and the story ends with a stronger love and those dreams coming true, but it’s the middle part of their story that these two must overcome. I enjoyed entering the world of boxing and learning what it’s like living the life of an athlete and most of all, I enjoyed exploring their love.

I worked with a professional boxer to get a feel for the world and what it would take to make this story as authentic as it could be and I know I was able to achieve that with his help. I also immersed myself in the characters lives in order to deliver their experience word for word. It was a fantastic experience and I hope my readers feel the same.’

‘Love Taps’ Blurb:

Jackson Knight was a wet dream and I feel like I’ve known him my whole life.

Francine “Frankie” Waters only wanted three things in life: to be a female boxer like Laila Ali, to marry Jackson Knight the cutest boy she knew, and to have his babies. So far those dreams have not come true but her late father may have willed her with more than his gym called Taps. However, the inheritance comes with a stipulation she thought she would never have to deal with again.

Jackson “The Punisher” Knight was known for a couple of things: knocking out his opponents in the ring and loving on Francine outside of it, but years ago both became a thing of his past. His future however, seems to be pulling him back into the world of boxing and into Frankie’s fire which he never seemed to mind until he got burned.

Can redemption be found between these two?

J.L. Campbell


J.L. Campbell has also been writing-up a storm, with a mix of short story and full-length releases. This is a proliferate Caribbean author, hailing from Jamaica, whose award-winning writing success spans multiple genres, from Romantic Suspense to Young Adult and Paranormal Black Romance (to mention a few). I’ve very much enjoyed several of her releases, this recent short, The Spice of Life, a case in point.

J.L. Campbell doesn’t shy away from the big themes, something I realized all three of these spotlighted authors share in common.

This week J.L. Campbell will be releasing the follow.on to her Thick of Things, entitled The Heart of Things. Here’s the blurb and a teaser to check out …

‘The Heart of Things’ Blurb:

After a year-long, Jamaica-Miami romance, Douglas Blythe succeeds in putting a ring on Khalila Skyers’s finger. Though gun-shy, Khalila is willing to marry Douglas, under one condition. She wants a baby.

Doug can’t go back on his promise to give her anything she wants, but sees trouble on the horizon with two teenage girls, a hectic business schedule, a devious ex-wife, plus a household turned upside down by a baby he doesn’t want.


Their commitment to each other is unquestionable, but will this couple’s differences bind them together…or force them apart?

‘The Heart of Things’ Teaser Excerpt

Khalila’s voice brought me back to the present. “Why did you have sex with her?”

I shrugged and leaned against the wall. “Dianne can be persuasive, but it’s not all on her. I did it because I wanted to at the time.”

Khalila turned to face me with a bland mask in place. “Are you still having sex with her?”

“No, I’m not.” I knew better than to touch her at that minute, so I slid my hands into my pockets. “Look, it was a bad decision, but like I said, we haven’t been together since. That’s more than five years ago.”

I sensed now wasn’t the time to give Khalila any reassurances. Her mind was still ticking and I’d wait for the opportune time to tell her I wouldn’t cheat on her. Khalila meant too much to me. If I fell over myself making promises, it would make her think I was trying to play on her emotions.

She let her breath out because I guess what she saw in my eyes assured her I wasn’t lying. “All of this makes me wonder whether you’re ready to get married again.”

“We slept together over five years ago.” I rubbed my chest, where my heart insisted on beating hard against my ribs. “That’s it. I haven’t touched her since.”

“Hmm.” Khalila’s expression hardened. “Something tells me Dianne would be happy if you somehow missed a step and fell into her bed.”

I would have told Khalila she was wrong, but there had been times when I did get the feeling Dianne would say yes if I asked her to get back in bed with me, and her statement to Khalila confirmed she wouldn’t mind. Not that I ever planned on that.

Dianne was the opposite of Khalila—abrasive, argumentative, and selfish. I’d had enough of that kind of behavior to last a lifetime. One thing was sure, I wasn’t planning to lose this gem of a woman. I chucked my earlier resolution to put off reassurances, laced my fingers with Khalila’s, and stepped closer. I gazed down into her upturned face. “Honey, believe me, I don’t plan to stray.”

“You know, men tend to say one thing and mean another.”

“But you also know I say what I mean and mean what I say.”

She exhaled harshly. “When you get right down to it, I can’t swear to what you would and wouldn’t do, Doug.”

“Khalila, I’m not one to swear, but I am telling you the truth.”

She closed the space between us, ran her hands up the front my shirt, and locked her arms around my neck. “Good, because I’d have to think about wringing your neck, not to mention something else, if you did. You know how I feel about cheating.”

With my lips against her forehead, I whispered. “Yes, I do. You can count on me not to do you wrong.”

Her eyes were glossy when she looked at me, and I knew where her mind had gone. She’d shared the pain of finding out that her husband had been cheating after they lost their son.

“Come with me,” I said, pulling her close and walking her back into the bedroom.

After urging her to lie on the bed, I pulled off my shirt and pants and got in next to her. She let out a breath when I brought her close to me and kissed her cheek. God knew I wanted to make love to her, but now wasn’t the time. (The Heart of Things © J.L. Campbell 2019)

At this moment, there is so much happening in the black romance space. It’s an exciting time. I would like to thank these trailblazers Angelia Vernon Menchan, Aja, and J.L. Campbell for participating in this check-in with their writing-life, and for allowing me to showcase and celebrate their work.

Peace & Love.

Liz

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