This month’s spotlight in the Decades series features a two-for since I was MIA in April.
If you are new to the series, Decades spans twelve decades of black love, starting from the 1900s to present day. Each month features a new release in a new decade.
April’s Release: The Art of Love by Suzette D. Harrison
Ava Lydell is chasing her dream. A gifted artist, she’s fled the violence of the Deep South for the seduction of sunny California. As luck would have it, the economic crisis of The Great Depression interferes with her hopes and plans. Without patronage and reliable sales, her fledgling art studio fails. Now, she faces poverty, eviction…and the distraction of a mysterious, young stranger engaged in a questionable trade that delivers danger to Ava’s front door.
In an age of Prohibition and poverty, Chase Jenkins has more than most Colored men. He’s savvy, successful, and hazardously employed. A bootlegger living on the wrong side of the law, he’s determined to discover who murdered his baby brother. He has no time for diversions, especially one packaged in the form of a “midnight beauty” with sultry lips and curvaceous hips. Unable to deny her allure, he involves himself in her affairs despite better judgment. What begins as a crisis quickly becomes a risky romance. Join Chase and Ava on their journey to outlive danger and indulge in the art of love.
May’s Release: Love’s Sweet Melody by Kianna Alexander
Warner Hughes returns home from war with the lingering effects of battle. Abandoned by his sweetheart and ostracized by his community, he feels he has no real home.
Elizabeth “Betty” Daniels has one love: music. Betty’s family wants to see her married and busy with affairs of the home, leaving no time to pursue her art.
Warner’s only solace is in the sweet melody of Betty’s music. To Betty’s mind, marriage means giving up the freedom to pursue her art. Can Warner let love in, and can Betty make room for love?
Can I just say that these covers are all bomb af?! They all wonderfully and beautifully capture the aesthetic of the decade, and I love seeing actual couples in their decade-appropriate garb, looking all fly and regal in spite of how black folk were treated during these times. Whew! I live!!!!