Imagine a lingering swarm of human-sized Apache choppers, guarding like a nervous NBA player, flitting around their children’s lives like a bee drunk on spring nectar, preventing their kids from fully flowering.
And now you understand what is meant by “helicopter parents”.
College administrators profess to hate helicopter parents, but in the new book “Too Good to be True” (c.2008, Doubleday, $24.95 / $27.95 Canada, 319 pages) by E. Lynn Harris, Brady Bledsoe’s coach is glad Brady’s mama is deeply involved. Carmyn Bledsoe is keeping track of her son’s future NFL career, and without her, Brady could lose everything.
Ever since he was a little boy, Brady Bledsoe had his sights set on becoming an NFL player. It was a dream he shared with his mother, who raised Brady by herself. Carmyn nurtured her son, oversaw everything he did, got him into the “right” college, and even protected him from predatory females by asking him to become a member of Saving Ourselves, a church group that promotes celibacy.
And Brady’s stuck to his no-booty promise – mostly.
There was that one time a year ago when he walked a girl home from a party. And there’s the teacher who asks him to pose in the nude for the sake of art.
But other than that…
Reluctant to disappoint his mother and eager to look good for the Heisman Trophy panel and for any NFL coach that might be watching, Brady lets everyone think he’s still pure. At least he’s doing better than his best friend, Delmar, who is rumored to be dancing at a men’s club for money. Delmar’s mama would be so proud.
But then Brady saw Barrett.
He noticed Barrett at the car wash first, and then again while she was cheering for the team. Barrett was smart and gorgeous, the most beautiful woman ever, and Brady was soon in love with her. How long could he keep his promise to his mother?
And how long could Barrett keep up her lie? Sports agent Nico Benson asked Barrett to get a signature from Brady in any way possible, and since Nico says he’s leaving his wife for Barrett, how could she say no? Life with Nico would be just too good to be true.
Good. That word pretty well describes this book.
Starting with a few decades-old letters that don’t seem to mean a thing, author E. Lynn Harris winds his story around pegs of love, obsession, lies, cover-ups, and under-the-covers scandals. While I wasn’t all that keen on Brady at first, I loved the horribly nasty Barrett, and Delmar’s mother made me laugh. By the time Brady started showing his wild side, I decided that he, like most of the characters in this fine novel, were bad in a great way.