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A Family Sin
Cover of A Family Sin
A Family Sin
A Novel
Karim Spencer, raised in the home of a bootlegger in a run-down neighborhood, has gone on to become a successful businessman with a tony home, a beautiful girlfriend, and a son. But memories of tragedy and betrayal have kept him entrenched in the past, as have the living reminders of his former life, including his down-on-her-luck sister, Nadiah; JaQuan, Nadiah's thugged-out teenage son; and Karim's older brother, Omar, serving a life sentence for a crime he didn't commit.

As emotions reach a boiling point, does Karim have what it takes to set JaQuan on a straight path, clear his brother of a bogus indictment without jeopardizing his own future, and hold together the family that he so desperately loves?

As Travis Hunter skillfully draws us in with strong, believable characters with endearing flaws and broken dreams, A Family Sin, full of riveting twists and turns of plot, unravels the mystery of a long-buried secret that threatens to tear a family apart.

From the Trade Paperback edition.
Karim Spencer, raised in the home of a bootlegger in a run-down neighborhood, has gone on to become a successful businessman with a tony home, a beautiful girlfriend, and a son. But memories of tragedy and betrayal have kept him entrenched in the past, as have the living reminders of his former life, including his down-on-her-luck sister, Nadiah; JaQuan, Nadiah's thugged-out teenage son; and Karim's older brother, Omar, serving a life sentence for a crime he didn't commit.

As emotions reach a boiling point, does Karim have what it takes to set JaQuan on a straight path, clear his brother of a bogus indictment without jeopardizing his own future, and hold together the family that he so desperately loves?

As Travis Hunter skillfully draws us in with strong, believable characters with endearing flaws and broken dreams, A Family Sin, full of riveting twists and turns of plot, unravels the mystery of a long-buried secret that threatens to tear a family apart.

From the Trade Paperback edition.
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Excerpts-
  • Chapter One 1

    The alarm clock beeped, waking Karim out of a dead sleep. He was never a morning person, but he couldn't take any more of the mechanical screaming. He moved his son's tiny feet from his forehead and reached over and slapped at the clock. He closed his eyes again but the alarm screamed again. He sat up and stared at the electronic aggravator as if his gaze alone would put an end to the madness.

    "Baby," Lisa, his girlfriend and mother of his four-year-old son, said as she walked into the room and turned off the alarm. "It's time to get up. One more snooze and you'll be late for work."

    "Who came up with that?" Karim said, frowning at the clock. "That's a horrible way to wake somebody up. Just jarring you awake like that can't be good for the heart."

    "When I had it on radio, you slept right through it," Lisa said, sitting down beside him.

    Karim ran his eyes over his woman's curvy figure. Her thick runner's legs, smooth chocolate skin, and nice plump breasts were his kryptonite.

    Lisa caught him staring. "You see something you like?" she asked.

    "Of course I do. And if I didn't have this headache you might be in trouble," he said, lying back down on the bed.

    "Men," Lisa said, punching him on the leg as she jumped up from the bed. "You know they say if a man goes out and comes home drunk and won't make love to his woman that he's cheating."

    "I was cheating," Karim said, rubbing his throbbing head at the temples. "With this little short lady named Patron."

    "Why are you drinking so much?" Lisa asked, obviously unaffected by the slight.

    "I don't know."

    "Leo had to drag you in here last night like some old alcoholic. I don't like that," she said, shaking her head.

    "I know," Karim moaned.

    He had heard this speech before, and unfortunately he was beginning to hear it a little too much.

    "Well, you better get up," Lisa said, moving on with her morning rituals. "If you don't want to be late for work again."

    Karim closed his eyes and massaged his temples.

    "Karim," Lisa called from the bathroom.

    "Yeah."

    "You wanna talk?"

    "About what?"

    "Anything."

    "Nothing to talk about," Karim lied.

    Lisa sighed and walked out of the bathroom and over to the bed. She reached over Karim and grabbed the sleeping Dominic.

    "Come on, little fella. Time to rise and shine," she said, shooting Karim a questioning look.

    Dominic, who'd inherited Karim's morning moodiness, frowned and tried to crawl to get under his father.

    "Oh no you don't," Lisa said, grabbing her chubby little boy before he could get away. "You have to go to school, little buddy."

    "Noooooo," Dominic said as he desperately tried to get away.

    "Karim, I meant to tell you, Nadiah called while you were out. Sounded like something was wrong, but she didn't share with me," Lisa said, picking up the telephone and checking the caller ID. "It was around two-thirty."

    "She must need something."

    "Well, call her back," Lisa said, taking Dominic into the bathroom to wash him up. "She is your only sister."

    "That she is," Karim said, still lying down, rubbing his head.

    The doorbell rang.

    "What the . . . ? Who is that at this time of morning?" Karim said, jumping up and stomping his way over the cold...
About the Author-
  • Travis Hunter, named Author of the Year in 2003 by readers of the Atlanta Daily World, is the author of Something to Die For, The Hearts of Men, Married but Still Looking, Trouble Man, and A One Woman Man. Hunter lives in Atlanta. Visit his website at www.travishunter.com.

Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    September 24, 2007
    The clunky latest from Atlanta-based Hunter offers a look at black urban life complicated by a slew of conflicts. The novel centers on Karim, who has escaped family tragedy and the temptations of the street to become a successful Atlanta businessman. Now he sees his nephew JaQuan headed for trouble, but is hesitant to help him for fear of bringing danger to his family. He's also grappling with the burden of being the family's straight arrow, surrounded by a stripper sister, a grandmother who sells liquor on her back porch and a convict brother. Hunter plagues his characters with obstacles, but the resolutions are too pat (or, in one case involving Random House saving the day, too hokey) and the prose is little more than serviceable.

  • Library Journal

    September 24, 2007
    The clunky latest from Atlanta-based Hunter offers a look at black urban life complicated by a slew of conflicts. The novel centers on Karim, who has escaped family tragedy and the temptations of the street to become a successful Atlanta businessman. Now he sees his nephew JaQuan headed for trouble, but is hesitant to help him for fear of bringing danger to his family. He's also grappling with the burden of being the family's straight arrow, surrounded by a stripper sister, a grandmother who sells liquor on her back porch and a convict brother. Hunter plagues his characters with obstacles, but the resolutions are too pat (or, in one case involving Random House saving the day, too hokey) and the prose is little more than serviceable.

    Copyright 2007 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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    Random House Publishing Group
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A Novel
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