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Sunday, March 19, 2017

Review: Lola by Melissa Scrivner Love

Lola by Melissa Scrivner Love
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Crown Publishing
Publishes 3/21/17

Melissa Scrivner Love's debut novel is a doozy!  Taking you right into Central LA and right into the gang life of The Crenshaw Six.  Even if this doesn't sound like it might be up your alley, I'd ask that you give it a chance.  Well written, page turning events and a strong female lead just trying to do her best to make it in this world.  Can't we all relate? ;) 


South Central LA has several gangs, but the one known as The Crenshaw Six has the Mexican cartel tapping on them to wage war on rival dealers. They tell Crenshaw's leader, Garcia, that if they don't follow through and do what they say, they will kill his girlfriend, Lola. They have no idea that Lola, in fact, is the true leader of The Crenshaw Six and she is watching their every move. She didn't become the leader without having to earn it. And because of her actions and strength, the men behind her will do whatever she says to protect her. Loyalties run high and are tested, brutal punishments are meted out and families grow in number, if not in blood. Lola has to find a way to balance it all, without losing her position, her family or her life.

Into the first few chapters, I wasn't sure if this was the book for me. But the more I read, the further I was sucked into the gang life of The Crenshaw Six. Inside Lola's head for the entire ride, we see her piece together puzzles, make tough decisions to keep the law of her world running smoothly and take a young child under her wing. As a rare woman leader in that type of life, she can no longer continue to rule from the shadows but may have to go further than she thought she was capable of to make her voice heard.

A truly remarkable debut novel. Melissa Scrivner Love knows how to write. By the end of the book I was rooting for Lola and couldn't stop turning the pages to see what would come up next. There were some truly amazing scenes that I could visualize clearly in my head and I felt my face actually cringe. There is no big bang of an ending and there was no need for one. I'm left wanting, thinking, so now what? I'm need to know what is next for these characters.. and if an author can do that, I think she's done a pretty damn good job with her story. Debut novel win!

Huge thanks to Crown Publishing for this copy in return for my honest review.

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