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Korey Fields is dead.
When Enchanted Jones wakes with blood on her hands and zero memory of the previous night, no one—the police and Korey’s fans included—has more questions than she does. All she really knows is that this isn’t how things are supposed to be. Korey was Enchanted’s ticket to stardom.
Before there was a dead body, Enchanted was an aspiring singer, struggling with her tight knit family’s recent move to the suburbs while trying to find her place as the lone Black girl in high school. But then legendary R&B artist Korey Fields spots her at an audition. And suddenly her dream of being a professional singer takes flight.
Enchanted is dazzled by Korey’s luxurious life but soon her dream turns into a nightmare. Behind Korey’s charm and star power hides a dark side, one that wants to control her every move, with rage and consequences. Except now he’s dead and the police are at the door. Who killed Korey Fields?
All signs point to Enchanted.
When I awake, I am eye-level with a puddle of beet juice soaked into the carpet, soft fibers cushioning my cheek.
Tiffany D. Jackson continues to amaze me! I cannot believe that I only discovered her books for the first time this summer. With only Monday’s Not Coming left to read, I think it is safe to say that Jackson has become an autobuy author from me. I have given all her books five stars, and Grown is no exception.
It is interesting to read this story having also recently read My Dark Vanessa, as they take on similar themes and both handle them well. I always worry that books like this, where there is a relationship between a grown man and a minor, may be romanticized in some way, but that was not the case in Grown or in My Dark Vanessa.
If you know anything about the allegations made against R. Kelly or you have seen the documentary series “Surviving R. Kelly”, you will have an understanding of what Grown is about and why it was such a tough read. This is something that continues to happen to young girls, particularly Black girls, who are trying to make their way into the music industry or into Hollywood or have dreams of the Olympics, etc., and it is so disgusting and heartbreaking. I truly believe that a teenager who reads Grown will walk away with a new perspective and a better understanding of what it means to be groomed.
Grown is technically a thriller but, like all of Jackson’s novel, the actual mystery is secondary to the human story. Your heart aches for Enchanted and you recognize how easy it is to become trapped in a situation like hers. The age difference isn’t the only factor that creates a power imbalance in her relationship with Korey. He leads her to believe that she would be nothing without him and he could make or break her music career. Reading her story felt so real, as did seeing how other characters reacted to her claims- it broke my heart.
There are many trigger warnings, including grooming and gaslighting, pedophilia, sexual assault, rape, kidnapping, revenge porn, child abuse, and addiction to opioids. These content warnings are included at the beginning of the book, which really should be standard practice and is appreciated!
- Characters: 9
- Atmosphere/Setting: 9
- Writing Style: 10
- Plot: 9
- Intrigue: 10
- Logic/Relationships: 9
- Enjoyment: 10
Overall CAWPILE score: 66/7=9.4