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True Lies by Margaret Johnson-Hodge
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True Lies by Margaret Johnson-Hodge was a great book! It tells the love triangle of the corrections officer Rick, his baby's mama, Gina, and a career-minded, independent accountant Dajah. Apparently, Rick hooked up with Gina during the rebound from a previous love affair. I have to agree with Gina's mother that the relationship seemed a little inappropriate since Gina was young (in high school) and Rick was 8 years older than she was. It seems Rick was much younger - maturity-wise - since he agreed with Gina when she stated she wanted to have a baby. After having the baby, Gina started missing her free and single days and would often leave their daughter, Kanisha, with Rick so she could party with her friends.

Finally, after having to find several last minute baby-sitters so he could go to work because, once again, Gina was MIA (missing in action) the next day, Rick gets fed up and puts Gina and Kanisha out by dropping them off at Gina's mother's house. Prior to this, Rick runs into Dajah at a cafe - there is an instant attraction. Dajah tells Rick to "call her" if he is ever free. Naturally, as soon as he kicks Gina out, he is contacting Dajah. I am not sure why women don't see it as a red flag when a man jumps out of one relationship immediately into another. I believe it is important to take some time (alone) to reflect on the past relationship to determine what went wrong and what could have made the relationship work.

To make a long story short, Rick and Dajah hook up but Dajah is very insecure in the relationship - always fearing Rick will leave her and return to Gina. Things take a turn for the worse when Rick purchases a 2-flat apartment building and has Gina and Kanisha move into the 2nd floor apt while he lives on the first floor - all so he can be close to his daughter - the love of his life. From a reader's perspective, I am not sure what Rick's intentions were when he hooked up with Dajah knowing that he had been saving a long time to implement his "plan" of having Gina live upstairs in his 2-flat. A blind man could see that he was asking for trouble. Needless to say, nothing but drama takes place once Rick's plan is implemented. Gina goes out of her way to disrupt any "alone" time between Rick and Dajah which only strengthens Dajah's insecurities.

Then when Gina makes the mistake of leaving Kanisha (4 years old) at home alone "assuming" Rick will be coming straight home from work, Rick decides to teach Gina a lesson by calling Child Protective Services on her. Gina is arrested and Kanisha is placed in foster care. What Rick had forgotten was the fact that Gina got on public aid to receive money to help Rick pay the mortgage and, in order to keep them from coming after Rick for child support, she made up a father on Kanisha's birth certificate. Rick almost jeopardized his own job because he had to go to court to prove he was not in on the fraud.

Anyhow, spending some time in jail was the wake-up call Gina needed and she turns a new leaf - attending court-ordered parenting classes helped a lot too. Without giving the ending away, the story comes down to: Will Rick stay with Dajah whom he says he is in love with or will the new and improved Gina turn out to be the type of woman he really wants to be with?

I highly recommend this book and I look forward to reading other books written by Margaret-Johnson Hodge! ( )
  Chicagoan | Oct 4, 2010 |
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Finally finding someone worth spending her life with, street-wise accountant Dajah Moore, who has been unlucky in love, falls for gorgeous corrections officer Rick Trimmons. Rick's troubled past comes between them when Gina Alexander, the mother of his four-year-old daughter, tries to shatter their newfound happiness.… (more)

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