THE PREACHER'S SON

Carl Weber, Author . Kensington/Dafina $24 (304p) ISBN 978-0-7582-0715-9

A pillar of the community runs for local office on a family values platform and is undone by those in his household in Weber's (Player Haters, etc.) entertaining novel. Bishop T.K. Wilson, head of the largest African-American church in Queens, N.Y., enters the race for borough president. He is a formidable candidate with an unmatched record of good works in the community, and he has the support of his devoted wife, Charlene, and their two children: Dante, a recent college graduate; and popular 20-year-old Donna. Trouble rears its head when Donna's secret affair with Terrance Reynolds, her father's protégé, takes an ugly turn; meanwhile, Dante's budding relationship with Tanisha Jones, a girl from the projects who struggles to care for her crack addict mother and 12-year-old brother, rubs Charlene the wrong way. Everyone is keeping secrets, but the most devastating one—involving the troubled pasts of Charlene and the bishop himself—is revealed as the election approaches and the bishop's leadership of the church is threatened. Using rotating narrators to provide close-up accounts of events as they occur, Weber spins a lively, revelation-packed tale deepened by genuine emotion, convincing detail and smart dialogue. Agent, Marie Brown. Author tour. (Jan.)