Review: Sweet Love, Bitter Fruit by Lyndell Williams

Synopsis:

Has everybody lost their damned minds?

Harlem lawyer Marcus Kent fights for justice while preserving a stable, passionate marriage with wife, Toni. Smart and confident, he has it all together—that is until his world turns upside down.

Not only is someone stalking his sister, but an intern at work is also getting too close for comfort.
On top of all of that, Toni’s renewed infertility obsession causes them to continually argue, adding more strain and cooling off their steamy union.

Struggling with insecurities and yearning to have a child, successful psychologist Toni Kent looks to her husband for support. Unfortunately, relentless distraction and stubbornness prevent Marcus from being there when she needs him the most and jeopardizes their happy home.

After multiple failed in vitro attempts, Toni is ready to try again, but Marcus is done. He doesn’t want another headache or more heartache.

Will a baby-making impasse tear this dream couple apart?

From the author of My Way to You, a new novel about keeping the flames of love and passion burning in a world determined to snuff them out.

**Warning: This book contains strong language, sex scenes and elements of violence, racism, and sexual abuse.**

Review: ★★★★★

I knowww, I haven’t posted in months. Shame, shame, shameee! I took a break to write, not realizing it would take me so long.

guilty

Next time I’ll be putting a heads-up on the blog but until then, I’m back inshaAllah.

Anywaaaay, what better way to jump back in, than with the second book in Lyndell William’s Brother In Law series. Do y’all remember Simon and Regina from My Way to You? Well, Regina’s bossy brother Marcus, (aka Simon’s best friend) has finally gotten the chance to tell his story in Sweet Love, Bitter Fruit.

Sweet Love, Bitter Fruit is a bit different in that Marcus and his wife, Toni have already fallen in love and are already together. However, like all couples, they have to overcome forces that would threaten their separation. The successful power couple has been struggling with unexplained infertility for the extent of their marriage. When crushed dreams and failed in-vitro start to take a toll on them, Marcus decides that he’s content to stop trying and live out the rest of his years with his “Sweetness”. However, Toni isn’t such a fan of that plan.

You know when you’re reading a romance and some unrealistic miscommunication happens that tears the couple apart? This isn’t that. Lyndell Williams proved in My Way to You that her characters in the Brothers In Law series have very real problems and Sweet Love, Bitter Fruit only solidified that. My favorite thing about Marcus and Toni is that even though they reach some depressing lows in their quest for dealing with their problems, their love and desire for each other never falters. I love the reality of anger while still acknowledging the deep love had for each other. Instead of playing on their love, Williams plays on the human emotions that can affect any relationship. She plays on loneliness, hurt, and even the fear of losing one another.

I always love characters that I can connect with, characters that make me feel like I’ve become a part of them while they tell me their story. Both Marcus and Toni spoke to me so clearly. However, Toni’s struggle spoke to me differently. Historically, society has a habit of connecting a woman’s femininity to whether or not she can bear children. People don’t know and sometimes don’t care about the emotional wreckage left behind when they make insensitive comments and give unsolicited advice. So poor Toni goes through it all. Even though she’s a mental health professional herself, I couldn’t help thinking about how she could really use another professional to speak to. A lot of the people who should have been supporting her just didn’t understand. I admit, at Marcus and Toni’s lowest point, I cried for her. It completely sucked how mean people were being, not even purposely but just by being insensitive. If that wasn’t enough, I got a blast of another emotional pain when Marcus faced threats to his life just because of him being a “big black man”.

I just, ughhh! They both need some huge hugs because there’s no way.

belle book sigh

Sweet Love, Bitter Fruit was an emotional rollercoaster for me that I related to in some very personal ways which made it even more poignant. There’s depth, there’s steamy passion, and there’s genuine love. Plus, if you’ve missed Simon and Regina, you get some really touching glimpses of them here  Everything that I need in a romantic romance. All of that to say I loved it.

I absolutely CAN.NOT. wait for the third book in the series, Building on Broken Dreams which features Muslim main characters and one who I realized that I happen to share a name with so yaaaay! You already know I’m automatically rooting for her, no matter what. If you haven’t already read “Brothers in Law” the short story that introduces the men in this series then do so! Also, discover or recap My Way to You for Simon and Regina love!

***Go find out what happens with Marcus and Toni here!***

 

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