Ruth Johnson is finally rising from the ashes of her abusive marriage. From the opening lines, the urge to surge up and recognize one's own womanhood flows through this novel. Recounting Ruth's troubled early life, she loses her mother, Karen, who was more like a sister and a friend. After letting one man after another waltz into her life, Karen bled to death in her one-bedroom apartment.

Soon Ruth finds herself living with her holier-than-thou grandmother, who wants to beat the fear of God into Ruth's heart. So it's no wonder that at 18, Ruth falls in love with Eric, her knight in shining armor. But after 10 years of being beaten down, Ruth realizes Eric is King of Beasts. And that's just the start.

J.D. Mason weaves an enthralling, unpredictable tale that allows the reader to walk in the shoes of the characters. What better praise for a novel than to be considered innovative and real. (Mar., 336 pp., $13.00)

Reviewed by: 
Shamaine Henry