JoeyPinkney.com Book Review
Scattered Lies II
5 of 5 Stars
Madison’s Scattered Lies II picks up right where the first installment ended, yet loses no time in immersing us once again in a world of lies, lusts and games of wits. I have to admit, I knew I was going to give Scattered Lies II a five-star rating before I finished the first chapter because I was hooked by it’s fluidity from the start.
Madison captured my imagination with her way of presenting the traditional characters, violence and settings that makes Urban Lit exciting by injecting intelligence and realism. Madison exudes intelligence in her word choice. Her plot twists will undoubtedly keep any thinking reader’s attention. If this book was a person, I’d say Scattered Lies II possessed equal parts book sense and street knowledge.
Each chapter digs deeper into the lives of a splintered crime family as they make sense of twisted world of order and chaos. Madison is a deceptive author. The amount of time she put into researching and polishing this book would make the average reader think that this book was easy to pull off. It had to be anything but.
The diversity of lifestyles and social strata contained in this book is not standard fare. Madison makes the disparate cohesive. Where else can you get legal jargon, real estate concepts, high fashion, guns with the serial numbers scratched off, unique alcoholic beverages, methods of killing without getting caught, nasty sex, media training and high school angst? In the same book? Three words: Scattered Lies II.
Gabrielle, a successful lawyer, has her own law firm. However, her husband Greg has been locked up and fighting for his freedom nearly as long as they have been married. Not an angel by a long-shot, Greg’s drug lord days caught up to him, and he’s been framed for a murder he didn’t commit. As Gabrielle digs deeper and deeper for the legal key to bring the love of her life back home from prison, she happens upon a world of deceit and unexpected love that she could have never been predicted.
Denise, a budding real estate mogul, lives a quadruple life. Although she’s strived to keep her lifestyle legal and legit, loose ends from her Pyrrhic past won’t let her put her guns to rest. If that wasn’t enough, her struggles with love and lust will melt your heart and make you sweat within the same breath. While Derrick is slowly cracking the safe that contains Denise’s tender heart, Morris has the key to unlock her loose chastity belt.
Tony, a rapper with lots of money and power in the music industry, struggles with control issues. The trapping of success seemed to cover up his low self-esteem. Having the most beautiful counterpart, R&B diva Christina, as a girlfriend proves to not be enough for this womanizer. As they strut in front of the media’s lime light, they struggle to maintain under the strain of Tony’s ego and misguided affections. Tony’s tortured soul does what is knows best, nonchalantly inflict pain on just about everyone in his path.
Christina, part model/part singer, has everything a girl could hope for: a powerful man, a beautiful body and tens of thousands of fans. Her glamorous life was actually fool’s gold: the one person she loves refuses to properly love her back. Finding a new love in an unlikely friend proves to be more than her fragile world can handle.
Morgan, a smart and beautiful teenager, hides the mental and physical scars of rape and molestation by a close friend of the family. Slowly losing hope, Morgan’s outward happiness slowly spirals into depression as she keeps her secret to keep her family alive. This terrorized teen’s anguish is just as confusing as the false pleasure she gets from her predator.
I absolutely love the way that Madison allowed her characters’ personalities to breathe. For example, there is a part in the beginning of the book where Denise is in jail schooling a young woman who came from a similar background. The exchange between the two is so realistic, from Denise’s approach to getting the girl to listen to the youthful ignorance that Lexis sets aside to briefly listen and learn from a person been there and done that. What Denise tells Lexis were some jewels that any female that’s young and dumb needs to hear, from gaining an education to carrying herself like a lady to being the woman a man wants and respects.
In terms of Scattered Lies II in relation to the original Scattered Lies, it was a powerful followup. The plot twists with this book can stand alone, but the real effectiveness of Scattered Lies II is how is continues the saga of the family that Greg Brightman built. If you happen upon this book before the first one, you should read the first one before embarking on the journey in which this book will surely ensnare you.
I felt like Madison wrote with a higher level of proficiency this time around, letting her characters lead us instead of Madison trying to lead the characters. Page after page, I struggled against the urge to skip ahead. This was not because the book was boring. Quite the opposite, Scattered Lies II was so intense, I could barely handle not knowing what was in the next paragraph, on the next page or in the next chapter. After you read part one and part two, you will definitely be a fiend for Madison’s part three to the Scattered Lies franchise and her next projects. I know I am.