Just Too Good to Be True Excerpt

While I realize that E. Lynn Harris’ latest book, Just Too Good to Be True, was released a few months ago, I heard from three surprising sources that it is a worthy read. As for me, I only own 3 of Harris’ books: A Love of My Own, Got to Be Real (which actually qualifies as a short story), and Gumbo (he’s the editor, so maybe that shouldn’t count either). I guess what I’m saying is . . . I don’t think I’m the fan that some folks might be. But can we trust word of mouth? I think I’ll pass on this one, but you can read an excerpt here:

Chapter One: Brady Drops the Ball

Yeah, I guess I am almost too good to be true, I thought as I read the SPORTS: The Magazine cover story for the third time. That is, if you believe the hype. But the truth is I almost ruined my life one night, but I somehow managed to right a wrong and come out basically unscathed.

It was a cool October night and my football team, the Central Georgia University Jaguars, had just recorded our biggest victory in CGU school history over the Louisiana State University (LSU) Tigers. It was a beautiful night for football, with a crowd of over 80,000 fans. I remember the smell of the grass and how great my teammates and I looked in our green and gold uniforms under the lights in a nighttime atmosphere that only college football can provide. It was an incredible feeling when the team raced from the tunnel to the field surrounded by a thunderous roar from the CGU fans.

I was a redshirt freshman, and in this my first start I gained over 150 yards against a tough LSU defense.

After the game, I decided to join my childhood best friend, Delmar, and some of my teammates for some postgame festivities. In the past, for me that would have meant reviewing film of that night’s game. But I was getting tired of all my teammates ribbing me and saying, “Brady can’t hang” and “Brady ain’t down with that,” so I surprised them and myself by going to drink my first beer with them at senior Teddy Miles’s apartment.

After a couple of beers, I decided to call it a night and trek back to campus on foot. When I got to the parking lot of Teddy’s apartment building, I saw a girl getting out of a car in a white dress and white stockings. When the headlights hit her face, I realized I knew her. Naomi Brasswell. A girl from the church I attend in Scarlet Springs. Naomi was one of several people who said they were interested in being a part of Saving Ourselves when I tried to start the group at the church, but she was the only one who showed up for the first meeting. So I gave up the idea of starting the celibacy club, but still talked with Naomi several times about how tough it was playing football and trying to stay celibate.

Naomi was a local girl, was majoring in nursing at CGU, and lived with her mother and little sister near campus. Sometimes we attended Bible study on Wednesday nights and went to the movies on Sunday after church. A couple of times she invited me to her house for Sunday dinner. I always accepted that invitation, because her mother could throw down with the pots and pans.

I liked Naomi a lot, but I was trying to follow my mother’s advice and stay focused on football and my studies. Still, I thought my mother might like Naomi because she was a virgin and went to church three times a week. (Read full excerpt . . .)

On another note, have you seen the cover for Harris’ future release? I guess he’s back to his regularly scheduled program, huh? No further comment your honor.

Aldridge James (AJ) Richardson is living the good life. He has a gorgeous town house in always-flavorful New Orleans, plenty of frequent-flier miles from jet-setting around the country on a whim, and an MBA—but he’s never had to work a regular job. He owes it all to his longtime lover, Dray Jones. Dray Jones the rich and famous NBA star. They fell in love in college when AJ was hired to tutor Dray, a freshman on the basketball team. But Dray knew if he wanted to make it to the big time, he must juggle his public image and his private desires. Built on a deep, abiding love, their hidden relationship sustains them both, but when Dray’s teammates begin to ask insinuating questions about AJ, Dray puts their doubts to rest by marrying Judy, a beautiful and ambitious woman. Judy knows nothing about Dray’s “other life.” Or does she? In BASKETBALL JONES, E. Lynn Harris explores the consequences of loving someone who is forced to conform to the rules society demands its public heroes follow. Filled with nonstop twists and turns, it will keep readers riveted from the first page to the last.

Happy reading, ya’ll!

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One thought on “Just Too Good to Be True Excerpt

  1. IMHO Lynn’s best books are his first, _Invisible Life_ and _Just As I Am_. After that…..???

    BTW Congratulations on discovering Alexie! He’s fantastic (and very funny in person also)

    Like

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