Getting His Game Back

Penguin Random House Audio. Jan. 2022. 9:55 hrs. ISBN 9780593452646. $20. CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE
Khalil Sarda owns a group of trendy Detroit barbershops with his best friend Darius. He has a large, loving family, and friends who share his interests in sports and partying. Vanessa Noble is a tech phenom at the height of her career when the two meet. Khalil is gorgeous, but Vanessa, who is Black, has reservations about dating a white man after having felt fetishized in the past. As things heat up, Khalil starts spiraling into a severe depression. He’s going to therapy but stopped taking his antidepressants when things were looking up for him, in business and romance. When he crashes, he pushes everyone away, including Vanessa, who was not aware of his condition. Vanessa, who has her own trust issues, must find a way to get through to Khalil when he is at his most vulnerable and show him he can trust her to help him through his mental health struggle. Jonathan Horvath is a wonderful narrator but this novel would have been more enjoyable with a cast of different voices truer to the varied cultural characters in the book.
VERDICT De Cadenet’s debut romance is a great listen as a sympathetic, inspiring, encouraging story of how far compassion and patience can go to helping depression.
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