This has been one of my highly anticipated reads for this year as I had read and reviewed the ‘Red Lines Trilogy’ by the author a while ago. I was eager to see what she would come up with this time and I am glad I was finally able to come around to reading this book.
‘Haven’ is the first book in the ‘Twin Bliss Resort Series’ and it is centered around four main characters. Ahmed is gay and has political ambitions to become a Senator in the Nigerian Senate. Janelle is autistic and Ahmed’s best friend. Jeffrey is Ahmed’s boyfriend/lover who wishes they could openly live as a couple. Ahmed decides that the best thing to do to raise his chances of winning the election is to get married and he believes Janelle is the best fit. They can be married and he can easily continue his relationship with Jeffrey. Janelle agrees to this arrangement. After all, Ahmed understands her better than anyone else. This is until she meets Tyrell on a short vacation to the Twin Bliss Resort in Gobota. Things get complicated and a love triangle or quadrangle as my bookish friend Jite calls it is formed. This is a multithemed story about ambition, lust, deceit, friendship and the travails of being different.
This was a very ambitious story to write and I applaud the author for taking the bold step to write this book. I was mostly impressed by how fluid the writing was and it showed how much the author’s writing skills have evolved over time. This is probably why I was held down by the story until the end. Although I didn’t find any likable character or anyone I was rooting for, I was still intrigued by the characters and events as they unfolded. There was a lot of drama going on with all the main characters and it got me pondering why some of them behaved the way that they did. I also liked the fact that autism was brought to the fore in this story and this may help to enlighten readers about autistic people around us.
However, I thought the story was too long and would have been better if some parts were shortened. I also believe that when authors write stories about characters that are highly flawed, there should be something to redeem them somehow. This story didn’t really do that in my opinion for the protagonists. Lastly, I wanted better names for the characters. Apart from Ahmed, all the other three main characters had foreign names and it didn’t just sit well in my head while reading the book, I would have preferred Nigerian names.
I recommend this book if you love “romance” stories with a lot of drama. If you are triggered by narcissistic behavior and the likes, then approach this book with caution.
Rating: 4 stars
Published: July 23rd 2021
Timi Waters is a West African writer. Her love for psychology and thought-provoking books led her into asking questions, finding answers, and asking more questions.
While Haven is her first published work, Timi has written and published short stories which featured in international bestselling anthologies. Her eBooks, The Red Lines Trilogy topped OkadaBooks and Bambooks bestseller charts for weeks.
When Timi is not writing, she’s poring over non-fiction and psychological thrillers, hosting tea parties with her characters, and lip-syncing to Nicki Minaj and Eminem’s rap.
She currently lives in Lagos, Nigeria with her husband and a shelf full of books.
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