Where There's Smoke

( 10 )

Overview

In the beginning, there was a drug dealer named Smoke, and Breanne Phillips was one of his most faithful customers. She was smoking crack cocaine to block out an existence she wanted to escape from. Smoke was just money-hungry enough to take her cash-and anything else she had to offer-in exchange for the magic rocks he had. It was a mutually satisfying arrangement, one he forgot about as soon as he got out of the game, dropped the nickname Smoke and started answering to the name...

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Overview

In the beginning, there was a drug dealer named Smoke, and Breanne Phillips was one of his most faithful customers. She was smoking crack cocaine to block out an existence she wanted to escape from. Smoke was just money-hungry enough to take her cash-and anything else she had to offer-in exchange for the magic rocks he had. It was a mutually satisfying arrangement, one he forgot about as soon as he got out of the game, dropped the nickname Smoke and started answering to the name Alec.

Fast forward sixteen years, and Breanne Phillips is back in his life. These days, she's a businesswoman, who goes by the name of Anne. She's dragging a sixteen-year-old hoodlum behind her, claiming Alec is the boy's father and demanding that he straighten out their son. And as if dealing with an unwelcome ghost from his past isn't enough, his son is mixed up in the kind of foolishness Alec is all too familiar with, which means he'll have to step in and rearrange some things. A door opens, and Smoke is suddenly back on the scene, ready to put some heads to bed, including Anne's. After that, he'll deal with the son he never knew he had.

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Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
Father's Day is an occasion for celebration-unless, that is, you don't know you're a father. So it goes for Alec "Smoke" Avery, who learns that he has a 16-year-old son. Now a respectable teacher, Alec has a past of which his onetime nickname is suggestive: He used to deal down in the 'hood, and one of his best customers, Breanne, now Anne, similarly reformed, is the mother. "I'd sampled some of the ladies," admits Alec, "but I hadn't left any babies behind that I knew of. But that was how things worked, wasn't it? You didn't know you'd left babies behind until you got hit for child support out of the blue." But young Isaiah looks like dad, right down to the finest of some fine features. He's also headed down a path that may not have such a happy ending, and he has nothing but disdain when he discovers that mom used to be a crackhead ("Anybody with an ounce of sense . . . would've known better than to get strung out on crack"). It's up to Alec to offer some role modeling and save the son he didn't know he had-easier said than done, since down at the projects, the competition is fierce and the temptations many. Temptations sidetrack Alec and Anne, too, as some of the author's more clinical passages explain. Little (Running from Mercy, 2006) writes comfortably in a range of registers, from N-word-laced ghetto slang to the more refined speech of the aspirational main characters, and with good humor to balance out the heavier moments (says one character of the comparative merits of Phil Donahue and Dr. Phil, "That's what's wrong with black folks right today . . . always looking to the white man for information"). There's not an unexpected moment in the narrative, however, and the reader willsee the ending coming from several blocks away. A solid, believable cautionary tale-no surprises, but ably written.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781933967783
  • Publisher: Urban Books
  • Publication date: 1/1/2009
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 715,798
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 10 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 10 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 14, 2012

    OMG! This book is so good. I didn't want to put it down.

    OMG! This book is so good. I didn't want to put it down.

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  • Posted November 12, 2010

    Where There's Smoke-Comes Alec Avery

    Where There's Smoke is a beautiful read which reads intelligently of the conflicts of life. A once drug addicted mother(Anne) struggles to raise her son(Isaiah), who's a teenager that somehow is drugging, drinking, making bad choices, and running around with the wrong crowd. There's only one thing to do and that's get in touch with Isaiah's enstranged father Smoke(Alec Avery) who never knew Isaiah exists. Together, the three of them learn much about the qualities and responsibility in life. This is a father's effort to now make the right choices and do right by a son he never knew. The book also show u how Isaiah struggles with whether or not to forgive his mother for her drug addiction. Where There's Smoke is one of the best books out for 2009. It gives insight on enstranged fathers, and mothers struggling with teenage boys. There was alot of comedy intertwined but was interesting that one still get a message and be able to move u all the same. The character development was detailed and excellent. I was able to connect with the overall feel of the characters. The book plot and meaning is stitched together beautiful. This is my first read by author Terra Little and I was amazed at her storytelling. Kudos to Mrs. Little, u deserve 5 stars, and 2 thumbs up for this beautiful and inspiring read.

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  • Posted November 10, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A Good One

    I think this was one that I read and loved it from beginning to end. I enjoyed it and will look for more books by this author.

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  • Posted July 24, 2009

    AAMBC Book Reviews

    Where There's Smoke is not only captivating...but author Terra Little makes you want to be in the pages. I am so going to miss these characters. The story line was a fresh breathe because this is not your typical romance novel. It is street, urban, love, soulful, and all that and more. Little writes about a man who discovers he has a son after sixteen years, and so not the typical stereo type of black men not taking care of their kids, the author depicts a life that seems to be on cloud nine. The man becomes the father he never knew he wanted to be and in the mist finds love in the person he least expects it. I could not put this book down. From page one this book had me. I feel like I am back in the zone with good reads now, because this book was FIRE!...I am adding Terra Little to my list of favorite authors.

    Tamika Newhouse
    AAMBC Reviewer

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  • Posted May 18, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    PHENOMENAL READ

    "Where There's Smoke" has garnered a place in my Top 10 Favorite Books of all time.

    It's an impressive anecdote brimming with remarkable characters and genuine subject matters. There's also a stroke of humor which I happen to love.

    If not for the explicit sexual content, this would be an ideal read for teenage males who struggle with their attitudes, values or behavior.

    As the mother of a teenage male, I certainly understood Anne's concerns. Single parenthood is a difficult and lonesome task.

    The book cover is a tad bit misleading. Nevertheless, the synopsis is right on point.

    I'd highly recommend "Where There's Smoke". I look forward to re-reading it in the near future myself

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  • Posted April 6, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Good book about how a person can change their past if they want to!

    This book is about 2 people that were able to change their lifestyles. One was a drug dealer and the other was a drug user. They slept together and a child was conceived and the father had no idea that he had a son until 16 yrs. later when he was served child support papers. Once it was evident it was his son, he stepped up to the plate and his family opened their hearts without question. I highly recommend this book it was wonderful to read about a family coming together with the same common goal and the parents find love.

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  • Posted February 19, 2009

    It's All Smoke

    Alec "Smoke" Avery is served with child support papers for a sixteen year old that he was unaware he had fathered. Knowing his past lifestyle, he had to find his accuser. Finding Breanne Phillips, now known as Anne and mother of Isiah.

    Anne, no longer the crackhead she was when Smoke was her dealer has tracked him down in hopes that he can help with controlling "their" son. The one he never knew he had.

    Smoke takes his roll as father seriously and sets about introducing him to family especially Big Mama, giving advice about the streets and disagrees with his mother on some issues; however, the back and forth between Ann and Smoke are thoughtful and at times humorous.

    Where There's Smoke is an enjoyable read and highly recommended.

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  • Posted January 26, 2009

    Loved It

    I hope she writes another book like this one. The characters were so real! I couldn't put this book down at read it in less than 24 hours. I wanted more, more, more.

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  • Posted January 11, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Time Changes Things

    Today, looking at Anne Phillips it's hard to believe that she's a former crackheard. Sixteen years ago, drugs were her only friend. That was until she found out she was pregnant by the local drug dealer with whom she traded sex for drugs. Now the mother of a sixteen-year-old that is smelling himself, Anne does something she thought she'd never do - look to her past for help. At wit's end, Anne contacts the father of her child, Smoke, via child support court in the hopes that he's a changed man and can prevent their son - a son he has no knowledge of - from making the bad choices they both did. <BR/><BR/>WHERE THERE'S SMOKE is a solid read carried by good writing, You root for the characters as Little has made their emotions and struggles tangible. You can probably guess how the novel will end, but Little makes the reading enjoyable. <BR/><BR/>Reviewed by: Toni

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 23, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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