Women and Adversity: Spendthrift Extraordinaire
“The Best of Everything,” a Rev. Curtis Black novel by Kimberla Lawson Roby, addresses a topic that fits in the category of addiction: overspending.
Alicia, the 22-year-old daughter of Rev. Black and his first wife, Tanya, has always gotten everything she ever wanted, and it was always the best, no matter the cost. Once she marries Phillip Sullivan, the assistant pastor at Curtis’ church, Deliverance Outreach, she realizes his income is far below her expectations. It doesn’t matter. She buys and buys and buys.
She spends $1,000 for sheets, towels and other accoutrements for the guest room because Phillip’s parents are staying overnight, and Alicia doesn’t want them to see the same furnishings in the room from their previous visit. She buys diamond earrings for $5000, and someone steals them. She buys from QVC, Macy’s and any store that sells expensive clothing. She lies to her husband about her shopping habits and opens charge accounts in his name without his knowledge. Her spending is totally out of control, and its effects mount. Disaster is bound to happen.
This book was published in 2009, but according to a 2013 article in “Time,” more than 75% of renters between 18 and 24 spend more than they earn each month. The solution? Budgeting, even though it hurts. I praise Roby for bringing the consequences of overspending to the attention of readers, and hopefully it has an impact.