Review: Smoke N' Stroke
SMOKE N' STROKE - Aja

Four20 Bae (Book #2)


She Loves Words Publishing

BUY


Brenda Larnell (A)

CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE
REVIEW: The Anthology authors are back with another creative series of entertaining and innovative stories. We know them from the Distinguished Gentlemen, Baes of Christmas, and the more recent, Baes of Juneteenth Series. Hold on to your readers for this new series, Four20 Bae. I am going to allow you to discover the significance of the series title when you read the stories.  The first story released is SMOKE AND STROKE, a workplace romance by one of my favs, Aja. The story has a familiar setting, Pittsburgh, PA, the author’s hometown.

Meet Dr. Zaire Booker and Dr. Nala Jackson. They are both very capable therapists who treat patients at Higher Pathways Counseling Center founded by Dr. Carla Patton. If that name sounds familiar, then you remember her from
SLICK - The Enigma Series, Book #3. Zaire and Nala are attracted to each other, but Nala is hesitant in pursuing a romance with Zaire. Not only does she remember him from his Graduate school “entanglements”, but they are also opposites in their treatment of patients with Zaire taking a more unconventional method of treating his patients to Nala’s more traditional methods. The romance brewing between Zaire and Nala is complicated and beyond hot! It’s explosive!  The Prologue is a testament to that. Plus, the “trust issues” that Nala has does not help. A series of events that include a violent patient, a trip to an annual cannabis-focused conference, and an unconventional prescription to help treat anxiety all come together to change the dynamics of their relationship. As far as the workplace dilemma, we have Dr. Patton to thank for finding a reasonable solution that both Zaire and Nala can work with.

I love the role that Dr. Patton plays in this story. However, there is one side character who is very intriguing, and he is Zaire’s friend, MJ, the dice-throwing owner of a club called Blunt Minded Joint. I would love to get to know him better!  The Epilogue is wonderful with an added bonus. You’ll get that when you read the story.

I love Aja’s stories, and
SMOKE N’ STROKE is no exception. The soundtrack is off-the-chain! You can download it and play it while reading the book. I highly recommend that you check out this entertaining and well-written novella. I’m looking forward to reading more stories in this 9-book series written by some of my favorite authors. Check out Four20 Bae. You can thank me later.


18th April 2024 | romcol@gmail.com

(A)