Born Latoya James, when starting high school, Cookie believes this is her time to stand out from underneath her sister s shadow. Always declared the odd one, she makes it her mission to be noticed by anyone who will pay attention. Reality starts to settle in when she realizes life isn t always peaches and cream. After witnessing the rape of her best friend, and then the death of one of her classmates, she starts to believe life isn’t what she thought it would be. Sex, drugs, catering to her new demons, and hanging out with the older crowd become her escape and not even her high school sweetheart can steer her straight. It isn t until she realizes everyone around her is not who they seem to be when she decides to change her life. But when she experiences an unwanted pregnancy and the death of her mother, Cookie is left to wonder if this is the way her life will always be. Based on a true story, Cookie is a gripping tale of a teen girl who had to grow up sooner than later. Taking place in one of the fastest-growing suburbs of Fort Worth, witness the life of Cookie and her quest to be loved, appreciated, and wanted. You will soon discover life is never what it seems.
I remember those days when it was nothing but just us girls. Hanging, partying, thinking about life after high school. All those things a girl dreams about when she gets grown. That’s a time I couldn’t wait to come, my adulthood. As everyone used to say, I can do whatever I want to do when I get grown. Coming home when you wanted to, having sex without feeling guilty, having my own car, my own apartment. What fools we were. I honestly loved living in the house in the middle of the circle on our street and where all the neighbors were white and knew us from diapers. I miss the times when boys used to come knocking on Mama’s door asking for me or Lyric to come out and play. I laugh at the word play ’cause that’s what we did. Played nookie.
Mama was a large woman. She was a Bible-gripping, churchgoing, single mother with a tongue that could curse you out till next year, and a fist that could knock you into the next decade. No matter what I did, I made sure I got good grades, obeyed what she said, and never spoke about what I really was doing. A single mother can only do so much, and my mother did it all. She was the type to yell, “Do it, God,” so loud your eardrums vibrated and your hair on the back of your neck stood up. She also was the one who punched you in the chest and whooped your ass when she caught a boy in your room.
Lyric and I were her only children, and like day and night, we didn’t mix. She was the loud, outgoing type with the big breasts. I was the dark, slender, quiet type with a dull life. Hell, it wasn’t until Lyric let me go out with her, when she used Mama’s big white van, that I started to come out of my shell.
Come out of my shell—humph! I laugh at that because coming out is just what I did. The boys started to bark at my hips when they started to resemble Nia Long’s, and I answered. They also loved my dark skin that tended to glow in the dark. I wasn’t always so dark. A sista was bright, and then brown, and now just black as hell. Got it from Mama.
Mama stood at 5’11, 350 pounds, and had long locks. She wore a Jheri curl for at least twenty-five years now, and it only looked good on her. It wasn’t the greasy curl everybody remembers. It looked more like hair a person would have if they were mixed with white and black. That kind folks called good hair. I wasn’t too bad off myself. My hair trailed all the way down my back to my bra strap. I never needed to wear extensions.
I was tall, slender, dark, pretty, with long, black hair and a mouth that could go off like a fire engine. I guess I should have introduced myself at the beginning of this tale, huh? My name is Latoya James, but you can call me Cookie.
Copyright© Tamika Newhouse. All rights reserved.