Book Review: Seven Days in June


Tia Williams

Rating: 2.5 out of 5.

published: 1st June 2021
spoilers? small ones

Goodreads

Seven days to fall in love, fifteen years to forget and seven days to get it all back again… From the author of The Perfect Find, this is a witty, romantic, and sexy-as-hell new novel of two writers and their second chance at love.

Brooklynite Eva Mercy is a single mom and bestselling erotica writer, who is feeling pressed from all sides. Shane Hall is a reclusive, enigmatic, award-winning literary author who, to everyone’s surprise, shows up in New York.

When Shane and Eva meet unexpectedly at a literary event, sparks fly, raising not only their past buried traumas, but the eyebrows of New York’s Black literati. What no one knows is that twenty years earlier, teenage Eva and Shane spent one crazy, torrid week madly in love. They may be pretending that everything is fine now, but they can’t deny their chemistry-or the fact that they’ve been secretly writing to each other in their books ever since.

Over the next seven days in the middle of a steamy Brooklyn summer, Eva and Shane reconnect, but Eva’s not sure how she can trust the man who broke her heart, and she needs to get him out of New York so that her life can return to normal. But before Shane disappears again, there are a few questions she needs answered. . .

With its keen observations of Black life and the condition of modern motherhood, as well as the consequences of motherless-ness, Seven Days in June is by turns humorous, warm and deeply sensual.

Galley provided by publisher

CWs: past self harm, implied paedophilia, drug abuse, alcoholism, past child neglect

Seven Days in June was, to say the least, not what I was expecting. Yes, don’t judge a book by its cover and all, but covers do still set certain expectations of a book, whether you intend it or not. So, looking at this cover, I was expecting a book that verged more on the serious side of contemporary, with some romance.

It was. Not that.

But it also… wasn’t not that. It’s funny, it’s like there was an attempt at making it a more comedic romance (the prologue opens with the main character choking on gum as she masturbates — that’s what I mean by it not being what I expected based on the cover), while also getting heavy at times (the entire background for the second chance romance). I’m not saying that couldn’t have been good! But I’m not convinced the author got the balance right here, or was maybe trying a bit too hard to be funny.

Add onto this the fact that I didn’t really get along with the writing and… well, you can see why I gave it two stars, probably. I can’t really pinpoint what it was — even less now I don’t have it in front of me reading — but it felt a bit removed from the characters, is what I remember. But this, like much of this review, is a personal thing. No one’s gonna have the exact same tastes in writing.

What I did enjoy about it, though, was generally the plot. Maybe less so the nitty gritty aspects, but the overall arcs of the stories, how each character developed. That was good. If I had enjoyed the writing better, I could see myself rating this one a lot higher.

But as it was, I struggled to get through.

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