HAPPY IS ON HIATUS - A. C. Arthur
Brenda Larnell (A)
REVIEW: In HAPPY IS ON HIATUS, you will meet a group of strong women who are major players in a special family! A.C. Arthur has penned a story that focuses on the ups and downs, right and wrongs, and the heart aches and joys of an extended African American family. Taking center stage in this panoramic view of the men and women who compose this family is Margarita “Rita” McCall, a cook extraordinaire. I love her character. She’s strong, yet tender-hearted; bossy, but lovable, and loyal to a fault. Rita is married to Nate McCall, but that’s about to change with one 5:18 A.M. phone call that occurs in Chapter 1, titled Burn, Baby, Burn.
The first chapter sets the tone for this engrossing story. I had a flash back of Waiting to Exhale, the movie, while reading it. You’ll get that when you read the book. What a great scene! In the next chapter, 911…What’s The Emergency?, we get to meet the sister-cousins, Sharae and Jemel, who have been in Rita’s life from day one. If “I’ve got your back” were people, it would look like those two women. Kudos to Ms Arthur for treating us to a dynamic storyline that blends well with the clever titles of the chapters. While Rita has her share of disappointments, her village is there through thick and thin.
The eclectic cast of parents, aunts and cousins lend support and advice, solicited and unsolicited, to our shero, Rita. She also has the backing of an entire congregation (minus a few) at New Visionary Baptist Church. Rita is a PK (preacher’s kid), and we discover how her religious upbringing plays an important role in her marriage. Speaking of NVB, one of the most compelling scenes of this story happens between Rita and one of the congregants of the church. No tea; just be aware that the scene at Rita’s house during a family gathering serves as a turning point in the story. While there is not the usual HFN or HEA that you have come to expect, there is a moment where Rita comes to a satisfying and empowering revelation about herself and her family. You know she’s going to be all right.
You can always depend on the prolific A.C. Arthur to regale her readers with a robust cast of complex characters, and a dynamic storyline that is smooth, seamless and coherent. HAPPY IS ON HIATUS does not disappoint!
I enjoyed HAPPY IS ON HIATUS. It’s a brilliant story that embraces home, family, and community. I recommend it for your reading pleasure. It’s a good read.
1st July 2022 | firstname.lastname@example.org