Relations by Pamela D. Beverly is an interracial romance novel about the budding love between an African-American man from D.C. and a Caucasian woman from Savannah, Georgia. Ms. Beverly presents to us a relationship challenged by the long distance between them, racial prejudice and even a health scare.
Frank Ellis and Delilah Carpenter meet at one of his financial planning seminars and are instantly drawn to one another: he by her Southern charm and voluptuous body and she by his dark, good looks and smooth, cool style. Well, he loses some of his cool points when he passes out drunk while having dinner with Delilah after the seminar. He redeems himself with her the next day with a heartfelt apology and their mutual attraction quickly develops into a long distance love. With the exception of her father, who is openly hostile to Frank simply because he is black, Delilah’s family, namely her mother and sister Clementine, are accepting of Frank and Delilah’s relationship.
Although he has no family, Frank forges a close bond with his best friend, Andy, and his girlfriend, Tywla. Tywla is black and she and Andy are experiencing their own issues as an interracial couple, especially with regards to having a mixed-raced child in the current social climate.
Pamela D. Beverly fills Relations with a multitude of scenes and lots of dialogue, but at times the scenes and dialogue serve no real purpose in moving the plot along and adding to the development of the characters. The descriptions of Frank and Delilah’s romantic moments together seem disjointed and often slow the story down. Their private conversations with their respective friends and family are smoother and more meaningful than their intimate conversations with each other. Overall, their relationship is a happy one, with conflicts appearing only briefly and not having the deepest emotional impact.
As a debut offering, Relations proves to be an admirable start to Ms. Beverly’s publishing career. Would I read more from her? Definitely!
-Reviewed by Angela