Review: Ante Up
ANTE UP - Christine C. Jones
Warm Hues Media
BUY
January 2017
CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE
REVIEWER:  Brenda Larnell| RATING:  A
REVIEW: Author Christina C Jones has pushed the proverbial envelope with this contemporary story that features two flawed protagonists who come together over a poker game and forge a bond over personal losses they each suffered. The story is set in Las Vegas and it’s not the glittery over-the-top picture of Vegas that is so popular. Instead, it’s the gritty, real-life, dark-side that the author delves into. From the first sentence “I shot him.”, the reader is pulled into the alter-world of the glitzy Vegas strip.

First, the heroine, Asha ‘Red’ Davis, is not your typical girl-next-door type that we are accustomed to seeing in Ms. Jones’ books. Asha has issues and scars that stem from a family life that failed to protect her. She is, however, a survivor, and everyday she manages to put one foot in front of the other in order to get through it. Her one ace-in-the-hole so to speak is that she is a poker playing sister. It’s the one positive thing she learned from her father, and even that sometimes evokes an unpleasant memory. Because of her skills at the poker table, she meets King, Kingston Whitfield, that is, and scion of the wealthy, casino owning Whitfield family. Rich, flawed, and like Asha, deeply hurt and carrying baggage from a previous relationship, they are attracted to each other like a magnet to metal. Star-crossed lovers? I’ll let you decide. I will say that the explosive chemistry between the Alpha King and Beta Asha keeps you wanting more. One thing for sure, this story is packed with a little bit of everything - romance, gangsta play, mystery and intrigue. It’s a page turner and you will not want to stop until you find out who will ante up!

The minor characters are unforgettable. There’s Ace, King’s Bodyguard who definitely does not play; Ahmad, Asha’s immature ex-baller brother; the Whitfield family; Detective Cree, and the creep of creeps Dorian. I would love a story that features Ace and Detective Cree, but I digress. All the minor characters contribute to the intrigue of the story and the development of the main characters.

Christina C. Jones, I see you! Your stories are top notch and
ANTE UP does not disappoint. Disclaimer: There is the use of profanity, but it fits the context. I highly recommend ANTE UP.

5th February 2017 | romcol@caribsurf.com