4 out of 5 books
Venice Valentine and Xavier Black are two different sides of a coin stuck on the West Side of Detroit, Michigan hustling to achieve their dreams of a better future for themselves. Venice struggles to keep open the neighborhood daycare her beloved grandmother who raised her ran for years. She's down to one adorable child whose attractive father makes his interest in Venice clear. Xavier is in the Game. He's a dangerous man who wants more stability and safety for his son than he had as a child.
Nurse and entrepreneur Venice is a good woman with an edge who isn't intimidated by him, and he wants her—forever. Xavier’s witty dialogue charms as it rings with layered meanings and authenticity.
Smoldering sexual chemistry, family drama, dynamic secondary characters, issues of social class plus cultural touch points regarding colorism, toxic masculinity, life's pursuits impacted by gender, ethnicity, and economics make Door to Your Heart a one-sitting read. It's also an homage to Detroit in general and the West Side in particular. From 8 Mile to the North and the Detroit River to the South, the music, food, energy, complexity, and stamina of its people receive acknowledgement and respect. It's ending suggests that Venice and Xavier’s story is just beginning.
Reviewed by Cardyn Brooks