In a perfect world, the road to happily-ever-after is smooth along the way. This is hardly the case for Yasmine Phillips since her journey towards the happiness she craves is filled with bumps, potholes and roadblocks. Being the product of a bi-racial union does not give Yasmine an easy start in life and things do not get any better when she gets older. In fact, they just get worse for her, from being negatively labeled a ho because of her healthy appetite for sex, to being betrayed by her ex-fiancé as well as being misunderstood by Zach Givens, an African-American man, with whom she eventually falls in love.
Jaded is the second installment of M. J. Kane’s The Butterfly Memoirs, but could certainly be read as a stand-alone. A Heart Not Easily Broken is the first book and Kane’s debut novel, while Lonely Heart is the third book of the series. Jaded, however, is the story of how Yasmine and Zach’s relationship evolves from Yasmine becoming Zach’s client, to being his best friend, then lover and finally his wife.
Kane uses Yasmine as a plot device to force readers to ponder upon a range of questions like: Will there ever be a time when bi-racial kids feel loved, acceptance and happiness in the two worlds to which they belong? Why are women called ho’s when they choose to sleep with anyone they want but men are called studs when they do the same thing? When is it not okay to keep someone’s secret? Should there ever be a time we begin to please only ourselves and not think about pleasing others? Should we always put our loved ones before ourselves?
Moreover, Kane’s use of the first person point of view gives readers a greater insight into the depth and complexity of the hero and heroine. I was taken by surprise on a few occasions, though, when the point of view seems to shift unexpectedly to Zach’s mother as well as to one of Yasmine’s best friends, Kaitlyn, but this still does not detract from the emotions and feelings the story evokes. Also, I’m always curious about why an author chooses a particular name for his/her novel and while reading this story I learned that the title and even the name of this series are deeply symbolic.
-Reviewed by Roxy