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Boaz Brown by Michelle Stimpson
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Boaz Brown

by Michelle Stimpson

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Michelle Stimpson's Boaz Brown is the plot-driven story of one racist Christian woman's search for love. The racist part intrigued (but didn't surprise) me; it's been said that "Sunday morning is America's most segregated hour," so I was curious to see how she'd handle it. She went straight for the throat by setting up a tale with a family-loyal black woman who gets involved with a white man and has to defend herself to friends and family about her outrageous choice. Of course, she didn't mention how almost every black man you see is with a white woman, but there's a double-standard for black women; maybe she's saving that for another novel.

The first thing I noticed about the novel was the stiff narrative. Her dialogue flowed, but the narrative felt like she was writing a business document. The stereotyped characters were put in place to move the plot along and tell her story, and at times it got a little old. Not all black women are like LaShondra and her female family and friends. I guess she was trying to show us what a good down-home Southern girl she is. Of course at other times, the book was laugh out loud funny. This covers many sins in my book. I also enjoyed her struggles in prayer and how she portrayed her relationship with Christ. That part felt real. But in some places, the degree of detail was too much and un interesting and did nothing to further the story. I don't care who drives a Honda or a Lexus or whatever. And I'd say that we can take it for granted the women were perfect in every way from their hair, their accessories, makeup, clothes and shoes. This is dull to me as well. Not every black woman lives or looks that way. Man looks at the outward appearance, but God looks as the heart, so I couldn't understand why looks, clothes, and material possessions seemed to be so important. I mean, Boaz was so fine that any woman within a 25-miled radius immediately set to primping and panting when he was in the area...does a white man have to be drop-dead fine before it's OK to date him?

Ironically, LaShondra's father felt like the most authentic character, and he was the main culprit in the racist teachings of LaShondra's past. I suspect these were the two real main characters regardless of the book being a romance novel at its core. But she had courage. She got right in there and got to the backstory of her dad's racism and issues.

I probably won't read another book by Stimpson, but I'm glad I finally read this one, since it sat on my bookshelves for 5 years. It was a quick read, easily polished off during a weekend. Perfect for the beach and bound to start up conversation with friends. It's a 3 star read, but I recommend it. For all my complaints, the novel had an odd stick-to-my-ribs quality about it, perhaps because LaShondra and I are both lovers of the Lord. If you fit the demograph for this novel, you will probably enjoy it. Like I said, it's LOL funny in parts and that covers many sins. ( )
  WordMaven | Oct 4, 2010 |
LaShondra always thought that her "Boaz" (the perfect man who would be like Boaz was to Ruth) would definately have to be African American. She just isn't attracted to white guys and in fact has a bit of an attitude against white people in general. But throughout the course of this book the reader gets to watch as the Lord works on her heart in some pretty amazing ways--the most amazing being Stelson Brown, the white engineer who through his perservence manages to win her heart. Along the way she has to face the trouble this causes with her family, her girlfriends, and within herself as she faces her own prejudice.
This romance story was refreshing in that it also tackles racial issues from a much different perspective, and in a manner that isn't heavy but lighthearted. As LaShondra narrates her story and as we see her inner struggles it opens up the reader to investigate how in subtle ways prejudice can exist where we might not see it at first. ( )
1 vote debs4jc | Nov 29, 2006 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0446696412, Paperback)

Prejudices that exist in the African-American church are addressed in this daring debut novel about a young Christian woman who finds her own racist attitudes--as well as those of her family, friends, and church--challenged when she is drawn to a man of a different race.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:43 -0400)

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Smart-talking LeShondra Smith and her girlfriends all face the same relationship issue - where to find a good man. They yearn to meet a strong, confident man who loves God, just like Boaz in the Bible. The problem is that they don't just want a godly man, they want a godly black man. Enter Stetson Brown, a handsome engineer and faithful man of God who matches LaShondra's wit, style, and values, but happens to be of a different race. But will LaShondra be able to overcome the beliefs that she and everyone around her supports and has grown up with, in order to open herself to the true love of Stetson and God? Can the "right" man be the "wrong" color? *Starred Review by Publisher's Weekly*… (more)

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