February 5, 2010

Review of "Searching for Tina Turner" by Jacqueline E. Luckett

Synopsis: On the surface, Lena Spencer appears to have it all. She and her wealthy husband Randall have two wonderful children, and they live a life of luxury. In reality, however, Lena finds that happiness is elusive. Randall is emotionally distant, her son has developed a drug habit, and her daughter is disgusted by her mother's "overbearing behavior." When Randall decides that he's had enough of marriage counseling, he offers his wife an ultimatum: "Be grateful for all I've done for you or leave." Lena, realizing that money can't solve her problems and that her husband is no longer the man she married, decides to choose the latter. Drawing strength from Tina Turner's life story, SEARCHING FOR TINA TURNER is Lena's struggle to find herself after 25 years of being a wife and mother. (from Amazon)

I have sat and thought about how to describe Searching for Tina Turner. The subject matter isn’t the cheeriest - - the breakdown and dissolution of a marriage against the backdrop of legendary singer Tina Turner’s struggles. And yet, Searching for Tina Turner left me pleased and satisfied.

What stands out most to me about this first time effort from author Jacqueline E. Luckett is that this book is a veritable smorgasboard of affection for France. Reading the portions taking place in France, I yearned myself to see Paris and the French countryside, as well as the wonderful little cafes and restaurants with their delicious chocolates and pastries. Lena came alive during this portion of the book and as a reader, I felt I did too.

I liked Lena as the central character. Reading a book dealing with such a heavy, emotional subject can be draining and it’s easy to find fault with your hero or heroine - - either they don’t grieve enough to be realistic or they grieve so much, while being realistic, that the book is simply too depressing to read. I found neither problem with Searching for Tina Turner. Lena grieved and she hurt, demonstrating she was nothing if not human, but she managed to go on. Not without difficulty but her struggle was rewarding. Lena was also strong - - strong emotionally and strong as a character.

Her husband Randall made me crazy - - but I could also see how and why Lena fell in love with him, an added bonus to comprehending Lena and developing a connection with her. 

I also enjoyed Lena’s friend Cheryl, a woman who is unapologetically happy to be and remain single and thrills at the dating scene. She provided a nice contrast between herself and Lena.

On a completely shallow note, I really love the cover. It makes the book look fun and jaunty and although the story isn’t exactly humorous or lighthearted, it was a rewarding experience to read it and share in Lena’s growth and progression.

Kudos to Ms. Luckett for a gratifying and worthwhile first book. I truly found pleasure in Lena’s journey and Ms. Luckett’s writing was descriptive, vivid and erudite. I look forward to her next literary effort.

Searching for Tina Turner can be purchased at major booksellers, as well as at author Jacqueline Luckett’s website here.
Further information about author Jacqueline Luckett and Searching for Tina Turner here:
Jacqueline Luckett's blog
Jacqueline Luckett on Twitter
Searching for Tina Tutner Facebook page
Hachette Book Group
Author Article

Review copy of this book provided by the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Please visit these fellow sites hosting Searching for Tina Turner today: 

Libby's Library News
The Book Tree
Revenge of the Book Nerds!
Book Journey
You Wanna Know What I Think?
Books and Needlepoint
Freda's Voice


Tales of Whimsy said...

Excellent review! I really want to read this 'cause of you ;)

I love this cover. It makes me want to take a Thelma and Louise trip (minus the sad ending of course).

Happy Friday :)

Jacqueline Luckett said...

Thanks for the delightful review. Lena's journey to self-discovery is one that we can all relate to.