A debut novel tells the story of a black woman with a demanding schedule trying to cope with some dire medical news.
“Black girls, they sure must die exhausted,” Tabitha Walker’s grandmother tells her. Her grandmother, who is white, is making an observation, but it’s a phrase that Tabitha, a 33-year-old black woman, knows to be true. She has her hands full as it is: a job as a news reporter in Los Angeles, a serious boyfriend, and saving for a down payment on a house. Then her physician gives her some information that makes things even tenser. “Premature Ovarian Reserve Failure. Gotta love that kind of name, right?” Tabitha thinks. “Rather than a much more friendly ‘disorder,’ the word ‘failure’ is already wrapped right in.” The irony? The condition is caused by stress. Her busy life isn’t even the start of the strain of being a black woman in America (as the fact that she gets pulled over by a cop after leaving the doctor’s office illustrates). Now, in order for Tabitha to have the family she’s always hoped for, she’ll need to find a way to make life less traumatic without sacrificing her career, boyfriend, or nest egg. Luckily, she has her two best friends, Laila and Alexis, to help her out along with her wise Granny Tab. Can Tabitha figure out a way to wrest control over her hectic routine and get her body to chill out enough for her to have it all? Or will she collapse under the pressure, utterly exhausted? Allen writes in a sharp, lively voice that is full of warmth and humor: “ ‘You out here trying to have an NBA baby!’ Laila shouted over the champagne flute at her lips at our Sunday late afternoon brunch table, cracking herself up at me and my indiscretions of the previous night.” Tabitha and her friends are well-drawn, and it is the dynamic between the protagonist and the women in her life that propels the story. Touching on issues of professional womanhood, race, and family, the author crafts a novel that is both timely and enjoyable.
A charming tale about a reporter deciding what she wants from life.