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If It Ain't One Thing by Cheryl Robinson

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Title:  If It Ain't One Thing

Author:   Cheryl Robinson

Publisher:  New American Library

Release Date:  February 2005

349 Pages

Reviewed By: Idrissa Uqdah






This novel by writer Cheryl Robinson was previously published as Memories of Yesterday.  Cheryl has become a remarkable success story after self-publishing her first two novels When I Get Free and Memories of Yesterday.  Both received stellar reviews while cultivating an intense fan base for her work.  


New American Library recently released her second novel and I can definitely understand why.  If It Ain’t One Thing is a remarkable story written in a style that will hold your attention chapter after chapter.  The author tells the story from the point of view of two main characters; Detroit Firefighter Porter Washington, a fine single brother with plenty of issues and Winona Fairchild, hard working single mother of two with several skeletons in her closet.  How Porter and Winona come together and attempt to build a relationship is a story that takes us inside the souls of two people who have had their share of pain and sorrow; disappointment and now yearn to find just the right match. 


Vividly drawn: the two characters become people that you care about and want to see survive their challenges in life.  This novel is a modern day urban love story that at times is rough and brutal but also depicts tender love and human emotion.  Porter is a brother without a cause.  His work with the Detroit Fire Department has a lot to do with his older brother’s death in a tragic house fire when he was a young boy.  Left with their grandmother when their parents’ marriage is on shaky ground the two brothers have only each other to sustain them.  His brother’s tragic death leaves him feeling pretty much alone in the world.  It is a situation that leaves him looking for love in all the wrong places.  He becomes your average playa with an unfaithful live-in girlfriend; mounting bills he can’t pay and a splintered relationship with his parents.


Winona; a Detroit native had relocated to Texas after a traumatic break-up with her son’s father.  Having disappointed her own father due to the mistakes she made in life; she was made to feel that she could never go home again.  After years of feeling insecure and unloved because she saw herself as an ugly duckling: her appearance changed, as she got older.  Yet, she still feels unattractive in her heart and she continues to make the same mistakes with the wrong kind of men in her life.


She makes a decision to make a major change when she lands a top position with a major corporation in Detroit and leaves Texas to return to her hometown and to mend fences with her judgmental father.    She also has plans to finally confront her son’s father. 


The story is full of both surprise twists and turns and the expected considering the background of the two main characters.  I laughed and cried with Porter and Winona as they struggled to find their way towards a future together.  This novel should garner a well-deserved wider audience with its re-release by a major publisher.  Robinson has given us a novel that deserves a sequel.  I recommend this book to anyone looking for a good read and an inspiring story line.


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