‘The Voting Booth’ – Brandy Colbert

For anyone who has an interest in politics, social injustice and who also can’t help but get invested in a good old-fashioned romance. Voting Booth offers some serious messages, while also delivering a love story in the making.

Our main characters are two first-time voters, Marva and Duke. They’ve never met, but both come from families with a healthy interest in politics. When they turn up at the polling station for their first time voting everything could have gone smoothly and they’d have left never having exchanged words. But where would the fun be in that?

Marva’s voting experience goes without a hitch, but Duke isn’t registered to vote. Realising he pre-registered at his dad’s address he thinks it’s a straightforward matter of getting to the new polling station and turning in his vote. At that moment we know the gods are conspiring against him as his car won’t start. Marva, desperate to ensure he votes and does his bit, offers to drive him.

What follows has to go down as the weirdest of days. Marva and Duke end up searching for a missing cat, organising transport for other voters who can’t access their right, one gets dumped, they both sort out some of the issues they’ve been hanging onto and one plays a gig. Both succeed in voting (eventually) and there’s even the strong hints of them starting a relationship.

I found the interaction between these two very natural. Their passion for politics and their ability to make a difference was infectious, and though I was carried along with their relationship it was impossible to ignore the focus on pressing social issues and attitudes to race.

I really hope people find their way to this book and enjoy it as much as I did.