Reviews for Perfect Marriage
Kirkus Reviews 2012 November #1
Denise and Derrek appear to be the perfect couple, but can their love for each other and their family overcome their deepening drug addictions? As this sketchy novella opens, Denise and Derrek are at a 12-step meeting. Derrek, whose parents were drug addicts, has decided that they need help quitting what his wife of 15 years considers merely recreational drug use. Denise, unlike her husband, came from a "good" family, and as a nurse, she believes she understands and can control both their joint cocaine use and her increasing reliance on Vicodin. What Derrek doesn't know is that Denise isn't serious about giving up a habit that she doesn't consider dangerous. What neither realizes is that both are vulnerable and that a family crisis will push them over the edge. Before long, they're both using again and moving into harder drugs that not only endanger their livelihoods and their comfortable upper-middle-class lifestyle, but eventually the health and happiness of their daughters. Roby (The Reverend's Wife, 2012, etc.) keeps to her fast, sexy, moralistic style; there is little doubt that love and faith will win out, especially for such an attractive couple. What keeps the adult fairy-tale formula from completely satisfying, however, is its sketchiness. The effects of the drugs, for example, are vague. The secondary characters, such as kindly old Lula from whom Denise steals drugs, are flat stereotypes. And details, like the health scare that starts Derrek using again, are mentioned after the fact, as if the author decided on a motive too late and didn't want to bother going back. This might hold fans until the next installation of the author's Reverend Curtis Black novels, but it won't win over new readers. An outline, rather than a fully drawn study, of a beautiful couple's trials with addiction, their predictable redemption too easily won. Copyright Kirkus 2012 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.
Library Journal Reviews 2012 August #1
Again, the popular Roby takes on a serious social issue within the context of glossy popular fiction. Denise and Derek Shaw have it all: happy marriage, successful careers, beautiful house, beautiful daughter--and a serious addiction to drugs. Their daughter must intervene to save them. [Page 55]. (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Library Journal Reviews 2012 November #1
Roby again takes on a serious social issue within the context of entertaining popular fiction. Denise and Derek Shaw have it all: a happy marriage, successful careers, a beautiful house, a beautiful daughter, and a serious addiction to drugs. As their lives start coming apart, their daughter intervenes to save them. [Page 82]. (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Library Journal Express Reviews
Roby's new novel (after The Reverend's Wife) proves that appearances can deceive because still waters run deep. Derrek, a top administrator at a local hospital, and Denise, the head nurse of a local nursing home, appear to be the perfect couple. They have it all: high-paying jobs, a nice home in a posh Chicago suburb, and a beautiful daughter, MacKenzie. But they are both deeply wounded by a long history of family secrets, leading the couple to seek escape in cocaine, pills, and crack. When their addictions spiral out of control, Derrek and Denise face losing their only child. Verdict Roby, a skilled storyteller, once again weaves together a compelling plot by placing ordinary, sympathetic characters in difficult situations. Roby's many fans and readers who enjoy African American pop fiction will want this one. [See Prepub Alert, 7/22/12.]--Lisa Jones, Birmingham P.L., AL (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.