The Black-Marketer’s Daughter: Scrapbook Page

 

THE BLACK-MARKETER’S DAUGHTER
by
Suman Mallick
Category: Contemporary / Literary Fiction / Multicultural
Publisher: Atmosphere Press
Date of Publication: October 13, 2020
Number of Pages: 166 pages

Zuleikha arrives in the US from Lahore, Pakistan, by marriage, having trained as a pianist without ever owning a real piano. Now she finally has one-a wedding present from her husband-but nevertheless finds it difficult to get used to her new role of a suburban middle-class housewife who has an abundance of time to play it. 

Haunted by the imaginary worlds of the confiscated contraband books and movies that her father trafficked in to pay for her education and her dowry, and unable to reconcile them with the expectations of the real world of her present, she ends up as the central figure in a scandal that catapults her into the public eye and plays out in equal measures in the local news and in backroom deliberations, all fueled by winds of anti-Muslim hysteria. 

The Black-Marketer’s Daughter was a finalist for the Disquiet Open Borders Book Prize, and praised by the jury as a “complicated and compelling story” of our times, with two key cornerstones of the novel being the unsympathetic voice with which Mallick, almost objectively, relays catastrophic and deeply emotional events, and the unsparing eye with which he illuminates the different angles and conflicting interests at work in a complex situation. The cumulative effects, while deliberately unsettling to readers, nevertheless keeps them glued to the pages out of sheer curiosity about what will happen next.

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PRAISE FOR THE BLACK-MARKETER’S DAUGHTER

“Mallick offers an impressively realistic depiction of a woman caught between tradition, family, and her own sense of empowerment.” ~ Kirkus Reviews

“The Black-Marketer’s Daughter is a key-hole look at a few things: a mismatched marriage, the plight of immigrants in the U.S., the emotional toll of culture shock, and the brutal way Muslim women are treated, especially by men within their own community. Titling it—defining the heroine by her relationship to a man rather than as a woman in her own right—suggests how deeply ingrained that inequality can be.” ~ IndieReader Reviews

“The Black-Marketer’s Daughter is the portrait of a woman who endures violence, intimidation, xenophobia and grief, and yet refuses to be called a victim. In this slender novel, Suman Mallick deftly navigates the funhouse maze of immigrant life in contemporary America—around each corner the possibility of a delight, a terror, or a distorted reflection of oneself.” ~ Matthew Valentine, Winner, Montana Prize for Fiction; Lecturer, University of Texas at Austin



Scrapbook Page: The Black-Marketer’s Daughter

1: Campion Trail, Irving, which makes several appearances on The Black-Marketer’s Daughter, on an ice-cold and rainy day.

2: Trinity overlook at Spring Trail Park

3: The author’s workspace in the MFA Lounge at Portland State University, where most of the novel was written.

4: The view outside on a lustrous spring afternoon.

5: The art studio overlooking a library lounge where a lot of writing and editing also took place

6: During a weekend trip to the Oregon coast, the view from a walk to clear the head after writing

7: Early summer morning, Sunriver, Oregon, on a trip to celebrate the completion of novel

8: A little poem (not author’s) on the board to keep him company part of the way.

9: 6YO Daughter’s design of the novel cover (working title – Apples and Knives)






Suman Mallick
received his MFA from Portland State University and is the assistant managing editor of the quarterly literary magazine Under the Gum Tree. He lives in Texas.

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1/6/21

Promo

Hall Ways Blog

1/7/21

Review

The Clueless Gent

1/7/21

Guest Post

Momma on the Rocks

1/8/21

Review

Forgotten Winds

1/8/21

Author Interview

All the Ups and Downs

1/9/21

Review

Bibliotica

1/10/21

Excerpt

Texas Book Lover

1/11/21

Author Interview

That’s What She’s Reading

1/11/21

Review

It’s Not All Gravy

1/12/21

Playlist

Chapter Break Book Blog

1/13/21

Review

StoreyBook Reviews

1/13/21

Scrapbook Page

The Page Unbound

1/14/21

Author Interview

KayBee’s Book Shelf

1/15/21

Review

Reading by Moonlight

1/15/21

Review

Missus Gonzo




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Cleo Ties a Bow: A Rabbit and Fox Story

   
CLEO CAN TIE A BOW
A Rabbit and Fox Story
by
Sybrina Durant
Category: Children’s Activity Book / Picture Book
Date of Publication: September 25, 2020
Number of Pages: 39 pages

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Cleo loves bows. She wears her hair in a bow and decorates her room with bows. Cleo is bow crazy. Learning to tie a bow is very difficult for some people but Cleo remembers how to do it from a cute story she once heard. It is about a little rabbit with very long ears and a very helpful fox who shows her what to do to keep them clean. This is the story of how Cleo learns to tie a “bunny ear” bow. Exercises in manual dexterity build self-esteem in children. Knowing how to tie shoestrings, scarves and more into a bow is a useful and rewarding skill. Teach a child a useful skill. Build confidence and self-esteem that lasts a lifetime. Other books in the Learn To Tie With The Rabbit and the Fox series are the book with that name in English, Spanish, and Tagalog plus Nellie Knows How To Knot A Neck Scarf and Ned Knows How To Knot A Necktie.


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Cleo Can Tie a Bow: A Rabbit and Fox Story is an adorable story about a little girl named Cleo that loves to tie bows. There are many bows, in her hair, in her room, she even sees butterflies that reminder her of bows. Cleo then shares a story about a rabbit with long ears and a fox that helps the rabbit tie their ears in a bow. In the story it shares the steps on how to tie a bow, which is a great learning tool for little ones. 

There’s so much to enjoy about Cleo Can Tie a Bow. As an educator myself, I could see how this book could be used as a great teaching tool. On each of the pages you can find and count the bows or butterflies. When you get to the steps on how to tie a bow, you can teach your child or student how to tie a bow. 

Another thing I loved about this book were the illustrations! They were so cute! I also really loved the story that Cleo shares about the rabbit and the fox. It was very adorable. 

I could see how this book could be set up as a series of Cleo books! I’m not sure if the author will be writing more Cleo books, but I sure would love it if she did! 

Rating: 4.5/5


 
   


Sybrina Durant is the author of some fanciful and some factual books. Her writings have inspired several online entrepreneurial ventures. Two of those are the Rabbit and Fox Bookstore and the Girls Love Bows Gift Shop. Spend some time browsing both for some interesting and surprising gift ideas for yourself and others.


 
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FOR DIRECT LINKS TO EACH POST ON THIS TOUR, UPDATED DAILY,
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12/7/2020 Book Trailer The Adventures of a Travelers Wife
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12/8/2020 Review Chapter Break Book Blog
12/9/2020 Author Interview Jennie Reads
12/10/2020 Review Forgotten Winds
12/11/2020 Review Story Schmoozing Book Reviews
12/12/2020 Top Ten StoreyBook Reviews
12/13/2020 Guest Post Book Fidelity
12/14/2020 Review The Page Unbound
12/15/2020 Guest Post All the Ups and Downs
12/16/2020 Review Missus Gonzo
 
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The Cowboy Who Saved Christmas Blitz

The Cowboy Who Saved Christmas

by

Jodi Thomas,

Sharla Lovelace, and Scarlett Dunn

 

Genre: Romance / Adventure / Anthology
Publisher: Kensington Books
Date of Publication: October 27, 2020
Number of Pages: 336 pages

 

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The Lone Star State doesn’t have to be lonely during Christmas time! 


Legendary author Jodi Thomas headlines a new holiday-themed Western historical romance collection featuring three Texas-set stories of romance and adventure. 

The Civil War is over, Christmas is coming—and it’s time for three rugged cowboys to hang-up their spurs and settle down. These authors combine their talents and excel at creating atmosphere and complex characters which infuse these stories with Texas history and evoke the grandeur of a bygone era and the indomitable pioneer spirit of the region. 

Prepare to be swept off your feet by these heroic cowboys who will stop at nothing to make sure this Christmas is one to remember. Ideal for gift giving, The Cowboy Who Saved Christmas will be the fan-favorite collection of romance for the 2020 Christmas season!


 

 

PRAISE FOR THE COWBOY WHO SAVED CHRISTMAS:

“FATHER GOOSE is a warm, entertaining story, with Trapper and Emery starting with nothing, yet finding love and hoping for a future.” 

Rose from Roses Are Blue

  

“It was a pitch-perfect reading experience that left my heart bursting with joy. This story has become an instant classic in my holiday reading canon.” 
PJ Ausdenmore from The Romance Dish

  

“I love an anthology at this busy time of the year because I can read a complete story in a short time–this book hit the mark.” 
Mary from Bookfan

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Jodi Thomas is a New York Times bestselling author and fifth-generation Texan who sets many of her award-winning stories in her home state, where her grandmother was born in a covered wagon. A multi-RITA Award winner and member of the prestigious Romance Writers of America Hall of Fame, she’s written over 50 novels with millions of copies in print. Her most recent releases are The Little Tea Shop on Main and the first book in her new Honey Creek series, Breakfast at the Honey Creek Café, which is out now.

 

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Spent Identity: Review and Giveaway

SPENT IDENTITY
Annalisse Series, Book 2
by
Marlene M. Bell
Genre: Mystery / Suspense / Light Romance
Publisher: Ewephoric Publishing
Date of Publication: December 11, 2019
Number of Pages: 378

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A body, a disappearance, just another hot summer in upstate New York.

It’s July when antiquities appraiser Annalisse Drury reaches her family’s small-town farm to consult with the trusted aunt who raised her. She learns that her beloved homestead—the one she expects to inherit—is for sale. While Annalisse reels at the betrayal and her shattered dreams, the Walker Farm ranch manager discovers a corpse in the barn. Officials close the suspected murder scene, and Annalisse seeks refuge with her aunt at Alec Zavos’s rural estate in New York’s Catskill Mountains.

Then Aunt Kate vanishes.

Annalisse solicits the help of Greek tycoon, Alec Zavos, even though their rocky romance has dissolved into routine separation. What began as hope on Crete nine months ago has eaten away at Annalisse’s hope for a future with him.

In Spent Identity, Annalisse and Alec come together for the second time and find themselves in the center of not one mystery, but several. Where is Kate, and why sell her farm now? Is the dead man a coincidence or a clue to the aunt’s disappearance? John Doe’s identity may hold needed answers to solve the puzzle before Kate’s unstable health issues make her rescue impossible. The clock ticks, and a vengeful murderer is in charge…

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Spenty Identity is suspenseful and filled with mystery, drama, and romance, I simply couldn’t get enough. It keeps you on the edge of your seat and keeps you guessing the entire time. 

Spent Identity follows Annalisse, an appraiser for a gallery in Manhattan that takes a bit of an extended vacation at Walker Barn where Aunt Kate, the woman that raised her, lives. Annalisse needs some time and distant from her busy life and her always away beau Alec. The last thing she expected to find was a man dead in the barn. Soon after the incident, Kate goes missing and their lives are thrown into chaos as they try to find Kate and piece together who the killer is and why they would take Kate. 

It was neat to see these characters grow from book 1 in Stolen Obsessions. Annalisse is both assertive and passive, but has no problem jumping head into danger to uncover the truth about the mysterious happenings at Walker Barn. As for Alec, he is presented at first as a bit of an arrogant ass, but since we already fell in love with him in book 2, you already know the good sie of Alex and know that he and Annalisse will work out their differences in the end. I thoroughly enjoyed both characters. I felt like Alec had more character development than Annalisse. Nothing really changed with Annalise as far as her development and personality. She’s pretty much the same character throughout the book. I personally would have liked to see more of a change in her as we do with Alec. But she’s a great character! Very strong willed and determined which I love in my female leads and it was a nice change from book 1 where I felt like she was constantly the damsel in distress. I felt like Annalisse was determined to take more control of her life in this book. 

As for the story development, I loved how it all unraveled. I probably blamed everyone at one point for being the killer, which is part of the fun! This book keeps you guessing and surprises you with who the villain of the story is. I love a good surprise in a murder mystery novel! 

There’s so much to enjoy from Spent Identity. There’s soft romance and there’s secrets uncovered. There’s a killer out for revenge. There’s family drama! Spent Identity held its suspense throughout the whole book and was a very intriguing read! It was a real page turner! I look forward to reading more by Marlene M. Bell. 

Rating: 4/5

Marlene M. Bell is an acclaimed artist and photographer as well as a writer. Her sheep landscapes grace the covers of publications such as, Sheep!, The Shepherd, Ranch & Rural Living, and Sheep Industry News. Ewephoric, her mail order venture, began in 1985 out of a desire for realistic sheep stationery. A color catalog of non-fiction books and sheep-related gifts may be requested on her website or www.texassheep.com.Marlene and her husband, Gregg reside on a wooded ranch in beautiful East Texas with their dreadfully spoiled horned Dorset sheep, a large and lovable Maremma guard dog named Tia, and Hollywood, Leo, and Squeaks, the cats who believe they rule the household — and do.


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Autographed copy of Spent Identity & companion notebook, Mary Poppins-style bag (18×13” tapestry carpet bag with leather trim, handmade in Israel), $100 Amazon gift card, and 18” freshwater pearl necklace. 
JANUARY 7-17, 2019

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