The After Party
Venus, Draya, and Jackie work together at Billings Croft Construction where they’ve been friendly in the past, but the night of the company’s annual holiday party—and the events that directly follow it, bond these women forever in friendship and in secrecy in A.C. Arthur’s latest novel The After Party.
All three have a reason to despise their boss, the handsome slimeball Rufus Jackson. Venus knows he’s dishonest, Draya fears he may release damning photos of her, and Jackie is repulsed by his aggressive pursuit of her though she has been an out lesbian for years. Over drinks at Venus’s apartment in their own impromptu after-party, the women bond over ways they would kill him; their conversation is lighthearted, but their anger is not. When Rufus turns up dead the next morning, all eyes are on them.
The storyline is compelling and the women are interesting, but sidebars into their sexual lives—in vivid detail—don’t always serve the plot, and a tendency to overexplain things keep the book from moving at the pace it could. That being said, The After Party has some clever turns, and Venus, Draya and Jackie are smart, competent women trying to make their way in a world bent on stopping them which makes the book a worthwhile read.
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