Synopsis: Donovan Jordan is a young and handsome Jazz Band director navigating a career in education in a new and challenging city. Yearning for change (and a few extra dollars), he forms a Jazz/R&B band with his friends. Managing the band, his career and love life with an “on again off again” girlfriend gets intense when a strikingly beautiful co-worker makes her intentions known. Will Donovan realize his purpose through faith and perseverance or choose to play it safe?
Genre: Fiction – Contemporary
When Tracey Jackson reached out to me about reading and reviewing her novel, I was excited by the synopsis and the opportunity to support the work of a fellow black woman. As I tried to read The Summer of Chances, I found myself struggling to feel the same excitement with the writing as I did with the initial synopsis. The writing felt forced as if the author was so focused on setting the scene that adjectives became a requirement instead of thoughtfully placed. As I was reading the first few pages, it felt more like a student trying to meet a word limit on a book report than an author trying to build the setting. I also struggling with the balance of internal monologue, dialogue, and setting description. In the bit that I did read, it felt like each was fighting to be the priority rather than the story itself. Ultimately I didn’t not finish this read. Maybe I’ll revisit it in the future, but right now I just don’t feel the motivation to work through it. I can see the framework of the story being interesting and for readers who read with a less critical eye, this would be a great summer read. It’s only 250 pages so its not intimidating in size and the story isn’t too niche so I can see it reaching a wide audience. Ultimately, I wish Tracey the best of luck as she continues this series.