If you don’t know Gizelle Bryant, she is one of the original cast members of The Real Housewives of Potomac. On the show, she’s well known for being divorced from a famous meagchurch in the area. It turns that not only had he been cheating on her, but that he also had a secret family. In the show Gizelle has the air of someone who had been through a lot and learned a lot of lessons from it. She’s also one of the more compelling people on the show in general, and seems one of the least “reality tv show” people on the show.
I have to say it’s refreshing to read a novel from a celebrity (even though I am sure it was ghostwritten) as opposed to a memoir. Usually celebrity memoirs tend to just be a greatest hits of the things you already know about it, and working very hard to sound like the person who wrote them and try to capture something very fleeting in a book. A novel on the other hand, which in this one more or less tells a version of Gizelle’s story, has the opportunity to outlive the fame cycle.
The novel tells the rise and then fall of a marriage between two best friends who met in college (different schools) but grew toward each other by attending the same church. When the minister of that church steps down for mysterious reasons, Jeremy feels called to take over the church. He doesn’t because he’s too young, but the drive stays with him and he eventually starts his own ministry. In the meantime, he and Ginger (our narrator) turn their friendship into a marriage. The novel then jumps more than a decade where they are well-established and moving toward an even more influential media empire. And of course, you can guess what happens next. An errant text along with some shaky vibes leads Ginger to finding out some devastating secrets.
Like I said, I like Gizelle a lot, and this book has the appeal of being a lot better than it has any business being. It’s compelling, perfectly well-written, and never outstays it’s welcome.