So these are my books. Buy them if you want.
That’s really not a good sales pitch but whatev.
All the Little Things:
The First in the African American Urban Romance Series featuring African American Couples
Rafael and Akilah Part 1 of 3
Rafael was positive that the sins of living in the streets would catch up with him and he’d be dead by the time he was twenty. So for his sister to find him and give him the second chance he desperately needed and wanted was the equivalent of his wildest dreams. Meeting Akilah on the first day of that second chance went way beyond them.
What him and Akilah begin is the whirlwind love story of novels that’s just too good to be true. Dating after two months. Vowing to be together forever after less than a year. It’s just too perfect. So Rafael shouldn’t have been surprised when the one thing that could ruin it shows up on his doorstep.
His stepdad. The reason he ran away from home three years ago in the first place. And all of a sudden Rafael feels like the powerless, desperate kid he used to be who wanted to protect the people he loved so much from the man that he endured his abuse for years. But Rafael won’t endure that again, not even for Akilah. He may love her, but not at the expense of his sanity.
The problem is his sanity’s already been compromised.
All the Uncertain Things:
The Second in the African American Urban Romance Series featuring African American Couples
Rafael and Akilah Part 2 of 3
“I know this was unexpected for us, but do you ever think you’re going to eventually be totally okay with this? Preferably before it’s born.”
“Some days I think so. Other days…”
Rafael and Akilah had it all figured out. Graduate high school, go to college, and, for Rafael, after a year of struggling with mental health issues and recovering from sexual abuse that happened to him as a teen, trying to be better and more attentive to Akilah.
Akilah getting pregnant just before they graduated high school wasn’t part of that plan.
Now, Rafael has to grapple with his mixed emotions about it. He didn’t want kids, but Akilah’s keeping the baby whether he wants her to or not, and he sure as hell doesn’t want to be like the dad who left him before he could really remember him. At the same time, he’s terrified if he stays, he’ll turn into the stepdad that abused him and his mother.
Considering his history and the bad examples he’s had for male role models his whole life, Rafael’s not sure he can do it. And given that he keeps messing up and even Akilah seems to doubt that he can be what she and their baby need for him to be, he’s uncertain he should even try.
Maybe his dad did have a good reason for leaving Rafael and his mom behind, and maybe that same reason is good enough for Rafael to do the same to Akilah so he’s gone before he can even give their kid even a vague memory of him.
All the Hidden Things:
The Third in the African American Urban Romance Series featuring African American Couples
Rafael and Akilah Part 3 of 3
I’ve always had some bitterness that it was me that had to go through what I did. And part of me argues it was probably just cosmic luck of the draw. But another part of me has always wanted to find some meaning in my violent past, something to show that whoever or whatever may or may not be in charge of the universe wasn’t just messing with me.
After a tumultuous first few years together, Rafael’s relationship with Akilah is finally stable. They’re both only months from graduating college, Akilah’s getting ready for law school, and Rafael… He’s really not sure what he wants to do with the rest of his life. But he’ll figure it out.
Then an old sex video of Rafael ends up online for the world to see and there goes stability.
With his silence doing more damage than the actual video, and his reputation and professional future on the line, Rafael decides the best way to undo the damage is to be completely truthful about the traumatic and violent past he’s tried to keep hidden.
He expected some backlash from his decision not to be the silent victim anymore. What he didn’t expect was Akilah’s own hidden past and damning indiscretions to be exposed and used against her. Nor did he expect it to go viral.
Now Rafael has to decide if defending himself is worth the cost of Akilah’s future and, possibly, their relationship or if he should just close his mouth and hope everything blows over. But it might be too late to stop. And even if it wasn’t, Rafael’s not sure he wants to.
Either way, he hopes Akilah will forgive him.
Best Laid Plans
The Fourth in the African American Urban Romance Series featuring African American Couples
Spring and Bilal Part 1 of 2
Spring’s done with relationships. She’s skipping the love and marriage and headed straight to the baby carriage with the decision to get artificially inseminated. But then she meets the Bilal, and they click over a mutual admiration for art and geek culture.
He’s not looking for a relationship. Even if he was, he just broke off an engagement two months before he was supposed to say “I do,” and he’s not willing to talk about it.
Huge red flag.
It’s easy for Spring to overlook, though. What they start together is just casual anyway, giving Spring a chance to enjoy the fun of a relationship as long as it will last before she carries out her baby plans.
However the line between casual and serious starts to blur, especially when Bilal offers to take her home for the Christmas holiday to meet the family that fully expects for him to get back together with the ex-fiancee he left behind.
The Fifth in the African American Urban Romance Series featuring African American Couples
Spring and Bilal Part 2 of 2
Spring’s personal life has never gone according to plan. Certainly so when it came to Bilal. She didn’t plan to be more than friends with him. She didn’t plan to fall in love with him. She didn’t plan to find out she was pregnant after he’d broken her heart. She certainly didn’t plan to forgive him (for now) and take him back afterward with the promise of starting over and taking things slow.
So much for taking things slow, though, when due to circumstances out both their control, Bilal ends up temporarily staying with Spring and she starts to wonder just how “slow” Bilal really wants to take things when he seems to be making permanent plans for them that go beyond fixing up a space for the baby.
But heartwarming as all that is, Spring can’t get him to tell her why he won’t tell his family that she’s pregnant or why he still refuses to go public about their relationship at all. And rather than planning a happily ever after, Spring feels like if she can’t get him to be honest about all that and why he broke up with her the first time, they’re doomed for another more permanent breakup instead.