*Nikki Blue, the unforgettable heroine of the eye-opening debut novel, PRETTY BOY BLUE, is back. In THE DARKEST SHADE OF BLUE, released during Pride Month, Friday, June 21, from iUniverse Publishing, author Monika M. Pickett pens a searing, sexy continuation of Nikki’s riveting story, a lesbian’s ongoing search to find acceptance as well as personal – and sexual – fulfillment in a complicated and sometimes hostile society.
Despite growing up in a New Jersey community where same-sex desire wasn’t accepted, Nikki always believed that she would find love and commitment with another woman, refusing to be held down by society’s standards. As a young person, she has dating adventures, eventually moving from college life to military service, and becomes pregnant while overseas.
In this riveting second novel, upon returning to the States, Nikki is devastated after a breakup from her lover Katrice. Nonetheless, she draws strength from within, giving birth to her beautiful son, Karlos, while garnering the support of family and true friends.
Determined to make it, she goes on to work in advertising for a major Washington D.C. publication, climbing the corporate ladder while exploring her erotic self in her personal life. She dares to open her heart again to two women: Danielle, a tall Virginian who adores Nikki’s son but for whom Nikki questions her attraction, and Valencia, a sales rep who hires Nikki as a birthday party dancer, with the two soon embracing moments of exquisite passion.
The brand-new sequel should delight and excite fans of 2017’s PRETTY BOY BLUE, which drew praise from both straight and gay readers for its emotional honesty, erotic encounters, and raw examination of the realities in store for a young African American lesbian. In this second book of the fictional trilogy, Nikki tries to balance her sexual identity while serving in the military, frequenting the club scene, and trying to find love.
“It’s a nice segue from the first book. Nikki always wanted a family; she always wanted that life. And in this book, she’s determined to find that,” says Pickett.
“In the sequel, she comes into her own. She believes I am going to have a child; I can be a lesbian and have a child. I am going to have a wife, whereas years ago it wasn’t feasible or acceptable.
“This shows Nikki’s growth, personally and in her relationships,” Pickett continues. “For this book, I want people to think about dispelling stereotypes and over-generalizations about the lesbian lifestyle. And in THE DARKEST SHADE OF BLUE, Nikki becomes more self-aware and won’t allow other people to define her.”
Readers are in store for another literary treat offering both sensual adventures and life’s hard truths while rooting for Nikki every step of the way.
THE DARKEST SHADE OF BLUE is available on Amazon and other leading digital retail sites.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Monika M. Pickett is a veteran of the United States Army, in which she served as a medic in Operation Desert Storm. She is an advocate and activist for the LGBTQ community. Pickett is a former advertising sales executive with The Washington Times and the National Society of Black Engineers. She earned an MBA from Johns Hopkins University, Maryland in 2005. Pickett is also the author of a monthly column, available online at EURweb.com and Medium.com, where she shares her thoughts, experiences, and advice about coming out, same-sex marriage and divorce, navigating the U.S. healthcare system, ongoing cultural bias, and other issues. She currently lives in Woodbridge, Virginia.
Ms. Pickett is a highly sought-after speaker and LBGTQ rights activist. She is available for press interviews and book signings. For more information, go to the website: www.monikampickett.com.