Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Black Romance Matters: Sharonda Discusses Her Dive Into Black Romance, It's Importance, and Her Favorite Read: 'In Covenant With Ezra' by Love Belvin.

Hey ya’ll.
First, thank you to Jazmen for reaching out and asking me to be part of her feature. I’m honored.

Let me start off by talking about why black romance matters to me. When I first started blogging in 2011 or maybe earlier, I talked about romance books. But, barely any of those books I talked about featured black couples and it’s not that I didn’t know that black romance books existed; they did. I’m not sure what I wanted when I first started blogging, but eventually, I started noticing the lack of black love stories being talked about across the blogs I was following. My attempt to find blogs that specifically talked about black books was even more lacking. I was disappointed and sad.

I thought, "Don’t our stories count? Aren’t we entitled to see books written by black women being talked about across the internet too? Don’t their books deserve to be raved so much about, that Hollywood wants to reach out and make movies about said books?"

 But mainly black women and girls should be able to come onto the internet and see books proudly displayed about them not just from mainstream publications, but from regular readers such as themselves. Then the whole “diversity” train took off, and I thought, okay, maybe we’ll see a boost in not just black authors but black readers/bloggers. But y'all know what happened? Black women in the book community again got pushed to the bottom even though we are almost always the main ones out here on the front lines knocking shit down. But then, it’s always like that. Black women are the first to step up and out; then told to be quiet and step back while others take over. It’s damn tiring.

tend to say that black life isn’t a monolith, and it isn’t. Yet the way we’re portrayed as a people is a heartbreaking thing to witness. To see non-black readers (or shit, let’s not fool ourselves here )some black people) say they can’t relate to black romance books is astounding but not surprising. But it’s normal for a black woman to relate to Becky riding off into the sunset with Chad, huh? It’s laughable and damn insulting but as I’ve “grown” as a woman; a black woman, I’ve learned that no matter how hard we attempt to get the world to see us as humans with a full range of emotions, some people just refuse to and I’m done attempting to appease those people. I’m getting sidetracked so let me come back around.

I’m not sure when I first started reading books by black authors again, but I found authors such as Delaney Diamond, Tressie Lockwood, Sienna Mynx, Nikki Winter, Dahlia Rose and Syndey Addae. Yes, some of these women wrote interracial romance, but for me to find black women that wrote BLACK women in romance stories? I was hooked and then I changed my blog, lols. But then you know what happened? I came across more black authors and they’re writing blackity blackityass characters in love stories (Christina C. Jones, Love Belvin and Tasha L. Harrison). And then y'all, not just black American authors but I found African authors (Kiru Taye and Nanah Prah). I was happy to see black women and men being portrayed in positive and yes sometimes messy ass romance books; it truly was euphoria for me.

The authors noted in my previous paragraph are just a few in a million. There are a plethora of black romance authors out here writing stories that revolve around black women and men finding their soul mates. There is no ONE black romance author because they are ALL telling our stories, stories we want to read. Stories we want to pass down to our children like our mothers before us OR in some situations, you're stuck and reading your momma’s romance because she didn’t play those games with your butt, lols.

Black romance matters to me because I want to recommend books to my nieces, sisters, and cousins. Stories where they’ll be like, “well, damn I can relate to this” and not just because the story resonates with them; but also the people in the story resonates with them. Everyone should be able to open a book and see themselves; EVERYONE. And they also shouldn’t be made to feel some type of way because they want said books. Black romance matters because we deserve it and you know what? You can stay mad if you’re mad.

My favorite romance novel. Man, this question isn’t even fair Jazmen. But I must go with: In Covent with Ezra by Love Belvin.

Why? Because I’m a sinner who was lusting after a fictional pastor, lols. No, seriously though what Love Belvin was able to do with this book is give us a flawed man of religion right? Of the Church. She gives us damaged characters but mainly with Ezra she balanced him. He wasn’t overly preachy, and he didn’t shuck or hide behind his faith because of his umm sexual needs and y'all, I’m just going to stop here. Because I don’t want to go to he-double hockey sticks because I keep lusting over a fictional pastor. Lawd, forgive me. Smh.

My Five top Recommends:
Wonder by Christine C. Jones
In Covenant with Ezra by Love Belvin (You need to read all three books)
The Truth of Things by Tasha L. Harrison
Take A Chance on Me by D. A. Young
Seducing Abbey Rhodes by J.D. Mason

All books are clickable!
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Be sure to follow Sharonda on Twitter: @BBRReviews
Comment, Like and Subscribe to her YouTube Channel: Brazen Babe Reviews
As well as her Podcast also entitled Brazen Babe Reviews


  1. Love this! I'm going to use my favorite descriptor for you again, Ms Sharonda: you're just awesome! Thanks to you for your take and to Jazmen for this feature.