Turning Tables || By Alice Takawira

Year of Publication:2022
Disclaimer:This book was sent to me by the Author for review purposes.

In this slow-burn romance thriller, American-based Zimbabwean debut author, Alice Takawira takes us on a journey with Maita who ends up in a love triangle with Ade and Chris; two men who could not be further from each other in character.

We meet Maita when she embarks on a journey to win back the love of her life, Ade, and on her flight to this mission, her life collides with Chris’s. As soon as the flight takes off, we, the readers are plunged into a turbulent journey of what the attributes of love truly are, red flags and whether second chances are our due.

In this story, Alice navigates interracial relationships, abuse, second chance romance, the importance of family in one’s romantic life and what true, lasting romance actually is.

This is both a cautionary and vulnerable tale. Vulnerable in the sense that we’re given insight into the struggles of immigrants abroad, especially on their romantic quests for life partners in a land that isn’t ‘their own’. We also ask ourselves a lot about tropes such as ‘love bombing’ and how to know when love is actually love and not an obsession or means to control.

The story is told from the POV of all three of our main characters, with the dominant voice being Maita’s, so it goes without saying that she is the one we root for, for the most part throughout the journey. On meeting her she is undergoing her own transformation or self-discovery. A maturity comes upon her that urges her to right some of her past wrongs and we get a sense of the possibility of ‘too little too late’ or ‘time waits for no man’.

Though riddled with many a twist and turn, I love me a happy ending and Alice does deliver! I’m not too sure how to pin this genre but she gives romance and she gives suspense and somehow it works. I had a few moments where I was certain I knew how the story would go only to find that no…there are other ways it could actually go and work.

The book could have been a little shorter, it truly starts picking up after the first half. The story itself however, is well told and worth reading.