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Posted April 12, 2010
Mixes sexuality and religious themes
It's hard to categorize "Lady Jasmine." I thought maybe it was a religious book, being that Jasmine Bush is the wife of Pastor Hosea Bush, whose father is Reverend Bush. Then I thought it might be romance when the semi-graphic sex scenes started rolling in.
Rather than classify the genre, I'll just appreciate it for what it is.
Jasmine is torn when her father-in-law is gunned down in the City of Lights parking lot one night. Reverend Bush ends up in a coma with an undetermined amount of damage to his brain. This means the Reverend's son, Jasmine's husband Hosea, will take over as Senior Pastor of one of the biggest churches in the area. Which means, Jasmine will become First Lady, a spotlight role Jasmine has always aspired to, although not necessarily if it meant her father-in-law paid the price.
The only problem is that Jasmine has quite a past. One that includes tricking her husband into thinking he's the father of Jasmine's daughter, sleeping with married men, stripping and prostitution.
In a previous novel, Jasmine thought she had told Hosea all her secrets, however in this installment, a blackmailer turns up threatening to compromise Jasmine's First Lady status with some forgotten sins of her past.
I cannot understand how Jasmine and Hosea ended up together, and maybe that's because I missed the previous novel. Jasmine is a manipulative, greedy, slutty woman who doesn't seem to want to spend any time with her young daughter, and would in fact rather dig up dirt on the other members of their church just in case one of them is her blackmailer.
It was gratifying to eventually learn exactly how mortifying Jasmine's past sins were, since in the beginning we were only doled out the information that she was worried about Hosea finding out she was a stripper. In fact she did much worse things than that.
The story seems pretty contrived, however, and it felt like the author started making things up as she went along, never revising earlier parts of the story that pertained to the outcome. By the way the book ends I'm betting the author wants us to like Jasmine, however she does not paint Jasmine as a very likeable person no matter how much Christian faith she proclaims to have.
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