A new-adult novel chronicles a college student’s adventures among older, wealthy men.
Nineteen-year-old Jasmine “Jazz” Lewis, a freshman at a Christian university in Los Angeles, is not finding romantic happiness among the immature guys at her school. Her best friend, Kita Okoye, is in desperate need of financial assistance after a fallout with her rich parents. An answer to both their problems comes suddenly from an unexpected source: “There was a documentary playing about a blonde college girl who joined a website called Searching Sweet Sugar. She described all the money she had made by having several sugar daddies, and she showed pictures of all the fancy vacations she was taken on.” Though at first horrified, Jazz soon becomes intrigued. Using the website, she and Kita are matched up with sugar daddies of their own, and life begins to get a lot more interesting. Pretty soon, all the girls in their dorm want in on the action, and Jazz finds herself running a sugar-daddy dating service. The cash starts flowing in, but it isn’t long before news of her activities comes to the attention of her parents, her school, and the public. After all, it’s a fine line between sugar dating and prostitution, and Jazz must be careful she doesn’t end up doing more for money than she ever intended. Lo (The Island, 2016, etc.) tells her story in a lively, snarky prose that allows the narrative to strut across the page. (Sample dialogue: “ ‘Where’d you get a roofie?’ Kita asked. ‘From a drug dealer in Dolce and Gabbana,’ I said.”) Punchy and fast-paced, the plot pulls the reader forward from the first chapter. While primarily a romp—Jazz is a sassy and self-deprecating narrator—the novel nevertheless manages to explore some of the more serious aspects of sugar dating. Occasional patches of clunky writing sometimes take the reader out of the account, but overall Lo has crafted an engaging, seductive, and unexpectedly empowering story of what a college girl will do to take control of the three things in life that most elude her: money, sex, and power.
A fun, fast-paced tale set in the LA sugar-daddy dating scene.