A glance at a Southern Story: The Unexpected Daughter by Sheryl Parbhoo

Me outside October 2017

Last month I posted about a book event I wen to and southern authors and their stories were featured. This gave me an idea to start a series on southern writers and how important their stories are and what makes them unique. Today I am featuring a unique southern story by Sheryl Parbhoo that gives us an intercultural relationship look and the struggles that come with and shows the commitment of love.

Stephanie M. Hopkins

The Unexpected Daughter by Sheryl ParbhooBook Description:

Three people’s lives intersect in a tumultuous yet redeeming way that none of them could have ever predicted. Jenny is a young professional from the South with an upbringing she wants to forget. She meets Roshan, an Indian immigrant who has moved to the United States with his mother, Esha, to escape family ghosts. With strong cultural tradition, Esha has devoted her entire life to her only child, both for his own good and for her personal protection from a painful past. Roshan understands his role as his mother’s refuge, and from an early age, he commits himself to caring for her. But when Jenny and Roshan embark on a forbidden, intercultural relationship, all three get tangled into an inseparable web—betrayal, violence, and shame—leaving them forced to make choices about love and family they never wanted to make while finding peace where they never expected to look.

About the author:

Sheryl Parbhoo

Sheryl Parbhoo is an author and blogger. A native southerner, her interest in culture led to a B.A. in Anthropology from the University of Memphis. Her longing for the spice of life culminated when she married her high school sweetheart, a South African Indian immigrant, and became a stay-at-home mom to their five children for over 20 years.

Sheryl has blogged for years about her spicy masala/southern cornbread way of life, raising her large multicultural family, and navigating the quirks of Southern and Indian in-law relationships. These, along with the responses received from readers, are the real-life inspirations for her novel, The Unexpected Daughter.

For more, follow her on Facebook ,
Twitter @SherylParbhoo and on Instagram.

What People Are Saying about The Unexpected Daughter on Amazon:

“Sheryl writes engaging characters and definitely captures the reader’s attention from the get-go. Even without the same cultural backgrounds, the characters and stories are relatable in a universal way… cultural struggles, familial backgrounds and expectations, baggage, battling your own demons, and making your own future. Her characters are flawed individuals, making good, questionable, and even horrible decisions…”

“You won’t want to put this book down, it will have you from the first few pages. Thru the twists and turns of the story you never know what is coming. I am an avid reader, this book is on level with J.K. Rowling, Danielle Steel, James Patterson, Nicolas Sparks, Nora Robert, etc. I look forward to more books from this author.”

“I loved this story, enjoyed following each character as they fought their own personal battles and learned a lot about Indian culture and tradition along the way! Roshan and Jenny have a unique friendship that grows into more but they resist the temptation to commit, he due to his Indian background, customs and parental influences, and she due to her fear of abandonment, and her difficult upbringing surrounded by poverty and addiction. After fighting the attraction, going their separate ways and living their lives apart for a decade, they come together and are faced with the same obstacles and more. As author Sheryl Parbhoo shows us in The Unexpected Daughter, it is impossible to escape our formative years, good or bad; it is a part of who we are and how we live in this world. What we can do is make good decisions for ourselves, embrace opportunities, live authentically and love with an open heart.

One of my favorite types of books is a story of immigration, assimilation and the mixing of cultures. The Unexpected Daughter delivers all of that so well as the backdrop with a rollercoaster ride of a story of a modern multicultural family as they come to terms with their past and grow together, navigating love, loyalty, addiction, ambition, death, birth and celebration….Life. A wonderful debut!”

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Cover Crush: The Book Jumper by Mechthild Gläser

Cover Crush banner

I am not a cover designer but I can agree that cover layouts play an important role in the overall presentation of stories and I must admit, often times I first judge a book by its cover.

Cover Crush is a weekly series that originated with Erin at Flashlight Commentary.

The Book JumperThe Book Jumper by Mechthild Gläser

Hardcover, 371 pages

Published January 3rd 2017 by Feiwel & Friend

Amy Lennox doesn’t know quite what to expect when she and her mother pick up and leave Germany for Scotland, heading to her mother’s childhood home of Lennox House on the island of Stormsay.
Amy’s grandmother, Lady Mairead, insists that Amy must read while she resides at Lennox House—but not in the usual way. Amy learns that she is a book jumper, able to leap into a story and interact with the world inside. As thrilling as Amy’s new power is, it also brings danger: someone is stealing from the books she visits, and that person may be after her life. Teaming up with fellow book jumper Will, Amy vows to get to the bottom of the thefts—at whatever the cost.

My thoughts:

Brilliant design! I love it! Even the character’s clothing has words on them! That is awesome! The title is great too. I might just have to add this book to my reading list regardless of hte mix reviews on goodreads.

Stephanie M. Hopkins

Other great book bloggers who cover crush:

Heather @ The Maiden’s Court

Magdalena @ A Bookaholic Swede

Holly @ 2 Kids and Tired Books

Colleen @ A Literary Vacation

Meghan @ Of Quills & Vellum

Stay calm and support book bloggers

Beautiful Shadow: A Life of Patricia Highsmith by Andrew Wilson

A couple weeks back at a book event I attended, the authors were asked what books they liked to read. One author said she liked to read biographies on writers and gave her reasons why. I was really fascinated with her interest in the genre that I decided I wanted to start reading them as well and to start a series of posts of the list of biographies I am compiling for my Library. Once a month I will be highlighting one I have chosen for the that month. Beautiful Shadows is my first on the list and I’m looking forward to learning more about the author behind Strangers on a Train and The Talented Mr. Ripley. 

Stephanie M. Hopkins

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Beautiful Shadow

The life of Patricia Highsmith was as secretive and unusual as that of many of the best-known characters who people her “peerlessly disturbing” thrillers and short stories. Yet even as her work has found new popularity in the last few years, the life of this famously elusive writer has remained a mystery.

For Beautiful Shadow, the first biography of Highsmith, British journalist Andrew Wilson mined the vast archive of diaries, notebooks, and letters she left behind, astonishing in their candor and detail. He interviewed her closest friends and colleagues as well as some of her many lovers. But Wilson also traces Highsmith’s literary roots in the work of Poe, noir, and existentialism, locating the influences that helped distinguish Highsmith’s writing so startlingly from more ordinary thrillers. The result is both a serious critical biography and one that reveals much about a brilliant and contradictory woman, one who despite her acclaim and affairs always maintained her solitude.

It’s Monday Again…

This weekend was pretty uneventful. I stayed home and read. worked on some art projects, blog posts, website content and watched movies. One needs those kind-of weekends sometimes, you know? Today I am sharing some pictures from my weekend. I’m still reading, Gradle Bird by J.C. Sassen and I will be through with it soon.

I love journals. I started back with it recently and I have such a busy schedule right now it helps keep me grounded.

Journal 11-20-17

I’m in the process of prepping the backgrounds for #christmastags I’ll be using for giveaways at Novel Expressions #Facebook Page in December.

Link to Novel Expressions Page HERE

Christmas Tags Prep 2017

My daughter painted on canvas and when I took this picture, she wouldn’t let me see what she was working on! By the way…. she doesn’t know I took this picture. Ha-ha… Her project turned out great.

Daughter creating 2017 I

I created this tag using Tim Holtz distress inks for the background.  I am so addicted to his products! They are amazing. I do believe the  paper flower is from his product line as well. The picture I took doesn’t do the tag justice but you get the idea…

Tag I Nov 2017

Two weekends ago now at a book event (BOOK EXCHANGE/MARIETTA, GA) I was sitting with author Kimberly Brock and she said she had a friend coming and her name is Emily, do I know her? I said she sounded familiar…. She sat between us and the three of us were having a great time listening to the four southern authors that were being featured at this event. It just now came to me that Emily is the author of The Weight of Lies! I reviewed that book and loved it. Darn it all, I didn’t get a photo with her! Total fan girl here! I am definitely going to include her in my southern writer’s series here at Layered Pages.

The Weight of Lies

Thank you for visiting with me today and be sure to come back this week for more fun posts.

Stephanie M. Hopkins

A Lovely Weekend To You

I’ve had a busy week and lots on my mind for new posts series starting soon at Layered Pages! As many of you know I posted about two giveaways and they are still open. Please don’t miss your chance to enter them. They are fabulous!

Gradie BirdieI’ve stared reading a southern story-Gradle Bird by J.C. Sassen- and I have fully embraced with the soulful sentiment in this story that reaches the core of a person’s heart. I am journaling passages that are making a profound impact on my journey reading this story. A story that touches you so…

So far, I am highly recommended this book. Hopefully I will be able to publish a review of the story soon. This will be part of my southern author’s series that I mentioned in a previous post. I was hoping to get a review up this week but yet again, it did not happen. I know my followers expect to see my book reviews and I need to be better at posting them. There is just not enough time in the day to get everything done!

Paper for book marksI’m also working on another project. I’ve got my paper selected for the 36 handmade bookmarks I’m making for a wonderful group of ladies. Can’t wait to see how they turn out! Bookmarks are so much fun to make. Normally I use scarp paper to make them but these I want to go all out. The ladies I am sending them to read Historical Fiction and I know these patterns are perfect for the genre.

I hope you all have a beautiful weekend and thank you for visiting me today! See you on Monday.

Stephanie M. Hopkins

 

Cover Crush: Seasons of the Moon by Julien Aranda

Cover Crush banner

I am not a cover designer but I can agree that cover layouts play an important role in the overall presentation of stories and I must admit, often times I first judge a book by its cover.

Cover Crush is a weekly series that originated with Erin at Flashlight Commentary.

Seasons of the MoonSeasons of the Moon by Julien Aranda, Roland Glasser (Translator) 

Paperback, 242 pages

Published September 26th 2017 by AmazonCrossing 

At the close of World War II, a chance encounter sets the course for one man’s destiny…

During the Nazi occupation, fifteen-year-old Paul Vertune, the sensitive son of wheat farmers, prefers gazing at the ocean and contemplating life’s mysteries over toiling in the fields of the Brittany coast. One fateful day, Paul’s life is spared by a compassionate German soldier with eyes as blue as the sea. When Paul’s village is liberated, an angry mob turns against their occupiers. The German soldier, near death, asks Paul to promise him one thing: find his daughter and tell her that her father loved her.

As Paul becomes a man, he fulfills his childhood dream of sailing the world, even as twists of fate steer his life in unexpected directions. But through it all, Paul never forgets his promise.

Beautifully moving and deeply profound, Seasons of the Moonevokes a sense of wonder at the mystery of human connection and the powerful ripple effects of kindness.

My thoughts:

I love the design of this cover and the colors used. The different phases of the moon is a nice touch.

Stephanie M. Hopkins

Other great book bloggers who cover crush:

Heather @ The Maiden’s Court

Magdalena @ A Bookaholic Swede

Holly @ 2 Kids and Tired Books

Colleen @ A Literary Vacation

Meghan @ Of Quills & Vellum

A $100 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway & A Book Giveaway!

Amazon Gift Card 100

Happy day! I’m just going to dive right in about these fabulous giveaways. Novel Expressions is giving away a $100 Amazon Gift Card! Amazing! To enter click HERE on Novel Expressions Facebook Page. You have until December 15th to enter and be sure to read the rules to qualify. So, what are you waiting for? Go on now….

Over at the Layered Pages Facebook there is a book giveaway for The Value of You: The Guide to Living Boldly and Joyfully Through the Power of Core Values by Christopher D Connors HERE. You have until December 15th to enter and like I said above please be sure to read the rules to qualify.

The Value of You

Where are you going? Where have you been? What are you doing about it NOW? As you think through these questions, I encourage you to make your move and reclaim the life you’ve always dreamed about. It’s yours if you really want it. But you’ll need more than just a burning desire. You need a game plan that is built on a rock-solid foundation of core values. Our generation has lost its way. In the fast-paced, instant-gratification world we live in, we’ve lost our direction. It is values that provide us direction and purpose on the journey to living the life of our dreams.

Values like confidence, faith, courage and hard work are key to living life on your terms. Know this my friend—it’s not only about the end goal. It’s the journey you take to get there. Because it is the journey that defines us in the end. The Value of You is a journey into the core values that give light to our human experience. Values lead us to interior freedom, peace of mind, happiness and success. Each chapter is filled with creative stories of famous people like J.K. Rowling, Simone Biles, Captain Charles “Sully” Sullenberger and Amy Schumer, as well as lesser known, yet remarkable heroes such as Dr. Liviu Librescu, Chris Singleton and Welles Crowther. Each chapter is a core value that describes the core features, explains obstacles to living the value, results of living the value and a personal game plan with practical guidance to help you make the value your own. We live in an ever-changing world with adversity and challenges. Values are the constant that position us for happiness and success. Values are a way of life. Start your journey today!

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Thanks for visiting Layered Pages today and please help spread the word about these giveaways!

Stephanie M. Hopkins