A Good Man

J J Murray, Author
J.J. Murray. Kensington, $15 trade paper (464p) ISBN 978-0-7582-7722-0
Reviewed on: 12/03/2012
Release date: 02/01/2013
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In this deceptively light but ocean-deep sendup of dating and reality television, Murray (I’ll Be Your Everything) takes a fun, reflective look at interracial relationships. Sonya Richardson, a retired WNBA star, reluctantly agrees to serve as a role model for black women on a show where 12 men compete for the hand of a “Nubian princess in search of her boo.” (“Why not Nubian queen?” Sonya immediately retorts, the first of many stereotype-deflating moments.) John Bond, a white widower from Alabama, signs onto the show as one of Sonya’s suitors. In the ensuing melee, the pair must find their own way amid religious concerns and painfully revealed secrets. Murray slips in references to C.S. Lewis’s The Screwtape Letters at the occasional expense of plausibility, but the religious elements are always uplifting and never overbearing, and readers should brace for a three-hanky finale. Agent: Evan Marshall, the Evan Marshall Agency. (Mar.)