Book Review: “The Accidental Diva” by Tia Williams

The accidental divaTitle: The Accidental Diva

Author: Tia Williams

Genre: Chick Lit/Women’s Fiction

Book Description: 

Being a diva isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Just ask Billie Burke. Brainy, beautiful, and at the top of her game, she’s the beauty editor at the world’s leading fashion magazine, where paying tribute to the perfect pink lip gloss is serious business. Trouble is, all this corporate climbing and party-hopping has left her with migraine headaches-and a long, lonely bout of celibacy.

Enter Jay Lane-a gorgeous performance artist who came up in a grisly ‘hood in a part of Brooklyn completely foreign to Billie. In no time, this beauty expert’s nights are bubbling over with hot passion-and she’s caught in an affair that’s as addictive and crazy as the city itself.

My Review:

O-to-the-M-frickin’-G, I LOVED this book! This was a book I picked up from the library months ago, and never got around to reading. I hate that I waited, because it’s a phenomenal read. You know the kind of book you carry around with you and read every chance you get? This was that. The cover and the description don’t do it justice. Looking at it, you’d think it’s going to be one of those fluffy standard chick lit books with little substance and lots of laughs. There’s nothing wrong with those kinds of books-I quite enjoy them. But, The Accidental Diva was so much more than that. Yeah, there were lots of laughs, but this book also touched on socialism, racism, sexism, gender roles, class separation and I could go on.

Picture it: New York, the year 2000. Billie Burke is a sheltered bookish young woman from Virginia who is  now a successful beauty editor at a top of the line magazine. Jay Lane is a former drug dealing, charismatic up and coming writer from the projects. Their worlds collide in a six degrees of separation type of way.

I get it. This story has been done before. The thing is, it’s been a while since I’ve seen it done this well. Tia Williams has the knack for outstanding dialogue. I felt like I was watching an entertaining movie the whole time I was reading. That’s not because there was a whole lot of description, but because there was just enough to let me use my imagination and really connect with what the characters were saying. And they all had plenty to say, in an in your face, not biting their lips kind of way. If you choose to read this book, I guarantee you’ll have moments when your jaw drops open in shock, or you’ll nod your head in agreement, or you’ll simply pause and self reflect. At least I did.

Now, in the interest of a complete review I’ll go ahead and point out a couple of negative aspects. One, in all of the outstanding dialogue, it’s easy to lose track of which character is talking, especially in group scenes. Two, there’s a lot of foul language. I mean, A LOT. But to me, in order to tell this story with authenticity, some of it was necessary. However, these two issues do absolutely nothing to take away from my 5 star review.

Yep, you heard me: FIVE STARS! This one is going in my collection of faves.  Check it out here via Amazon.

What was your last ‘can’t put down’ book? Dish below!

P.S. Keep in mind that this is a throw back book circa 2003 ish, so the cover has been changed since then. The one pictured here is of the hardcover edition. The one pictured via the Amazon link is the paperback version. It’s all the same book!

 

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