cover image Welfare Wifeys

Welfare Wifeys

K'wan, St. Martin's, $14.99 paper (352p) ISBN 978-0-312-53697-8

K'wan (Section 8) continues the stories of characters Animal, Gucci, Don B. and his Big Dawg crew, while introducing some new ones, who all inhabit the complicated and interconnected world of the "hood." Animal is now a big-time hip-hop star who's returning to New York from Texas on music-related business and to avenge the deaths of his posse. Malika gave up a middle-class life when she became pregnant by Suede, who after his release from prison betrayed her and denied their son, Solomon. K'wan offers fans more of what they expect—double-crossing, violence, sex, and drama involving the characters they have come to love or hate. For first-time readers, the back­stories from previous novels can get confusing, while narrative threads suddenly drop away without resolution. The novel ends much like others in the series, begging for a sequel, but regardless, K'wan excels at dialogue, and his densely packed universe has every element of successful street drama. (Oct.)