A FAMILY AFFAIR by ReShonda Tate Billingsley

A FAMILY AFFAIR

KIRKUS REVIEW

Bernard Wells is an adulterer. Enraged that he fathered their live-in nanny’s child, Adele Wells casts not him but his child and the nanny out of the mansion. She may be ruthless and melodramatic, but Adele can’t stop fate from re-uniting the family.

For the last 17 years, Olivia’s mother, Lorraine, has scrimped, saved and sacrificed to give Olivia the best she can, but poverty has crushed their hopes. Things change quickly, however, when Lorraine finds an acceptance letter to Juilliard hidden beneath Olivia’s mattress. Hours after Lorraine mysteriously rushes out of the house, Olivia discovers her mother has had a heart attack and arrives at the hospital just in time for a deathbed confession: Olivia’s father is alive. He is the very wealthy Bernard Wells, CEO of England Enterprises. Olivia heads to Los Angeles. After all, what’s left for her in Houston? She can’t pay the rent, and the flame she carries for her ex-boyfriend is doused by the discovery that another woman is carrying his child. Confronting Bernard is no simple matter, though. Although he wants to help Olivia, he can’t risk Adele’s discovering that he has re-connected with his daughter. He devises a plan riddled with secrets, lies and money. He arranges for Olivia to work for him as an intern, along with his slacker son, Kendall, promising to back Kendall’s music career if he lasts six months. Sworn to secrecy, Olivia cannot tell Kendall that she is his sister. Meanwhile, Bernard’s mistress is becoming suspicious of the new, pretty intern who spends so much time with Bernard. The secrets swell and the payoff checks mount until an accident forces everyone to reveal the truth. Broken hearts and shattered trust follow. Note: an adaptation of Billingsley's novel Let the Church Say Amen, produced by Queen Latifa, will air on BET in Fall 2013.

An overwrought novel from Billingsley (the author's previous books include Say Amen, Again, NAACP Image Award Winner for Outstanding Fiction) that will nonetheless please fans. 

Pub Date: July 30th, 2013
ISBN: 978-1-4516-3969-8
Page count: 336pp
Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15th, 2013




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