Book Review: The Jaylen and Jessica Series




I am sick and tired of this, you hear me? I AM SICK AND TIRED OF THIS!

Why do authors continue to disrespect my time? Don’t they realize that I have a job? Errands to run? Laundry to fold? Food to eat? STOP WRITING BOOKS THAT LEAVE ME HANGING ON EVERY WORD WITH BAITED BREATH. STOP IN THE NAME OF ALL THAT IS HOLY.

Whew. Sorry, I had to get that off of my chest. It’s just that I was taken by surprise AGAIN (don’t be alarmed, this often happens) by the Jaylen and Jessica Series by Shaquanda Dalton. Why am I just now hearing about Shaquanda Dalton? Why haven’t I heard more about the written works of my Midwestern sister? Evidently, someone has been holding out on me, but don’t worry I won’t do the same to you.

Don’t get me wrong, the story of Jaylen and Jessica is far from perfect. In fact, during some parts it was akin to watching a train-wreck. However, what they lack in common sense, Jaylen and Jessica gain back in an honest and captivating story.


Jessica is a college dropout with big dreams who is trapped in a relationship with a man who doesn’t respect her. Abandoned by her parents and the death of her beloved grandmother, the only person Jessica can trust is her best friend, Jaylen.

Jaylen is a young, successful businessman, who hates the fool his best friend Jessica calls her man. While his best friend is losing at the dating game, Jaylen is winning or is he?

Follow Jaylen and Jessica as they navigate relationships, scandal and love.

Books in the Jaylen and Jessica Series in Order:

  1. When Love Hurts
  2. I Won’t Cry
  3. We’ll Make It Through
  4. No Matter What

The Verdict

(All books are rated on a scale of 1-5 lilies found here.)

Main Characters: test3lil


I’m not saying Jessica had rocks for brains, but I questioned rather there was a vacancy sign on her head during most of the 4-book series. While I questioned Jessica’s common sense repeatedly, I could not hate her character. Throughout the series, she felt familiar to me. Towards the end of the second book,  it hit me: Jessica reminded me of Anna Faris’ character in the 2008 film The House Bunny. She is loving with a heart of gold, longing for a family of her own…. and a bit of an air-head.


Jaylen is one of the few male leads in a romance novel that did not irritate me. In fact, his character was one of my favorites in the series. Jaylen’s reaction to most of the events in the series felt natural.

Supporting Characters:test5lil

What Dalton excels at in the Jaylen and Jessica series are the supporting characters. When Jaylen and Jessica fall off into the deep end, the secondary characters ground them in reality. The characters relationship develop naturally, and their presence help propel the story forward.

Storyline: test3lil

As mentioned in the introduction, the storyline held my interest during most of the series. Jaylen

My thoughts during most of "We'll Make It Through" (Book 3).
My thoughts during most of “We’ll Make It Through” (Book 3).

and Jessica are young and naive and make many mistakes before the series concludes, the storyline reflects that. However, the events in We’ll Make it Through (the third book) almost made me give up on the series. In this book, it seemed like Jaylen and Jessica were void of all common sense.

Overall: test4lil

The cover(s) almost made me not read the book, the heavy emphasis on the cityscape and the woman posing made me think that this book was going to be a shallow story about city life. It was far from that.

Would I Recommend?

While the third book made me want to call Iyanla and ask her to fix it, overall I would recommend the Jaylen and Jessica series. Shaquanda Dalton (who is only 21!) is a solid storyteller who has created a decent series. The Jaylen and Jessica Series is a perfect light read for a rainy day or vacation.

3 thoughts on “Book Review: The Jaylen and Jessica Series

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