Friday, October 4, 2013

New Release Alert! Unoma Nwankwor's An Unexpected Blessing

An Unexpected Blessing is a novel of love, forgiveness, and being open to God’s plan in your life. The best blessings are often unexpected.

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Personal banker, Feranmi Adewunmi has done well for herself in diaspora by any standards. But by her parent’s calculations, she should be married by now. And they had the right man for her. For Feranmi, being single wasn’t a crime and so she came up with the perfect plan to beat them at their own game. All she needed was a man.

CEO of Montgomery Construction, Alex Montgomery was back in Atlanta. His primary focus was rebuilding his business after an unfortunate incident in Chicago changed his life forever. A chance meeting with Feranmi turned that plan upside down. The pain she caused him in school was still fresh in his mind but so were the feelings that never died. Now she needed a favor.

For Feranmi time was running out. Her parents would be visiting soon and she still hadn’t found the perfect Nigerian man. Alex was her only option, after all how hard could it be? What they weren’t prepared for was an attraction they couldn’t ignore. Will they lean on the Lord for guidance or insist on being in control? Will his guarded dark past confirm her fears? Or will love prevail the second time around?

An Interview with Unoma Nwankwor

What was your inspiration behind the novel? 
Life in general presents a lot of ideas. I ’m a Nigerian living in diaspora so I mainly inspired by things around me here in the States and back home in Nigeria. An Unexpected Blessing is no different. One of the most talked about topics for African women whether in diaspora or back home or in general is marriage. People have a certain expectation on the age at which a lady must be married.  An Unexpected Blessing explores that issue.

What is the take-away message you’d like to share with your readers? 
An Unexpected Blessing is a sweet romance that teaches love, forgiveness and acceptance. Most of all it teaches that things go much smother if we trust God’s plan and are willing to step outside our comfort zone. To be able to let go of always trying to be in control and let the Spirit lead. You will also get to know more about the Nigerian culture, things you wouldn’t read otherwise. LOL

How can readers connect with you? 

Chapter Excerpt
“Why didn’t you tell me?” Feranmi weaved in and out of traffic as she headed up 400 North to Alpharetta.
“Before we get to that, can we resume the discussion where you tell me how happy you are that I’m getting married?” Kayla quipped on the other end of the phone.
Feranmi wanted to kick herself for not being more excited for Kayla. Kayla was her girl. She was genuinely happy that she’d found love with a good man and was getting married. But try as she might to be over the moon about it all her own pathetic situation was throwing shade. “Forgive me. I’m thrilled. Tell me all about the proposal.”
Kayla didn’t wait a second to do so. The details were painfully romantic and so representative of the Kofi Kayla had been describing over the months. Fancy dinner, horse drawn carriage ride around the city, roses in the park; down on one knee…it was all divine. The joy Feranmi should have been feeling had finally made its way to her heart. “That sounds like something out of a fairytale.”
“It was and the ring is to die for. I’m going to take a pic and send it to you.”
“You do that. Right after you explain how Alex Montgomery knew you were engaged before I did.” Feranmi’s tone wagged the finger she couldn’t make Kayla see. “Make sure you start at the part of the story where you explain how you and Kofi are even involved with Alex.”
“Okay,” Kayla said the word with a lilt of caution. “I told you Kofi and I ran into Alex a year ago at this networking thing.”
“Yes, I remember.”
“Kofi and Alex hit it off. They did some business together. They play basketball and golf. Girl, I don’t know. I think they like best friends or something.”
“I tried to bring Alex up to you a few times and what? What did you do?”
Feranmi was steaming. Sure, she’s banned the name of Alex Montgomery from their conversations, but if he and Kofi were friends…
“Fera, don’t get angry. I didn’t really know how cool they were until a few months ago. I also didn’t know at the time that Kofi and I would be getting married, so… I tried to spare your feelings. I know how you feel about Alex.”
“I don’t feel anything about Alex.”
“Yeah, that’s why we’re having this conversation about him right?”
“I just didn’t like being taken by surprise like that. I didn’t expect it. You know I don’t like surprises.”
“Yeah, well let me get it out now then so you won’t be surprised. He’s in the wedding.”
“You’ll survive,” Kayla said. “You should try to holler. He’s getting finer with age.”
“Holler, see that’s what I’m talking about. American women pursuing men who should be pursuing them.”
“Don’t start that American, Nigerian stuff. You know I’m not trying to hear that. No culture is perfect, so stop being pious about American men.”
“I know it’s not all of them.”
“It’s not most of them. Besides Nigerian men aren’t all perfect. If they were you’d marry Bayo. Ouch.” Kayla teased.
Feranmi wanted to ring Kayla’s neck for bring up Bayo.
“I have to go. We’re calling Kofi’s parents before it gets too late over there. Wish us grace.”
Feranmi’s heat cooled. “Grace, Sis. I love you. Tell Kofi I said congratulations.”
They ended the call just as Feranmi pulled into her driveway. She stepped out of the car. From her approach she could see a long Federal Express box on the front stoop. She had no idea what it could be as she hadn’t ordered anything online lately that required shipping. She opened the door, put her things inside the foyer and scooped up the long, rectangular shaped box. She made her way into the kitchen. Pulled out scissors to slice it open and was shocked at what her eyes were looking at. Red roses. A dozen of them. She searched inside the box for the card. She had no idea who on the earth could or would have sent her flower. They weren’t from her brother because he only sent them for her birthday.
She removed it and read:
Feranmi – It was wonderful running into you today. I hope you’ll bend your rules and call me for that dinner. – Enjoy, Alex.

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An Unexpected Blessing illustrated how two people can still find love in each other from different cultures. It shows that what God had ordained for them neither could deny no matter how hard they tried. It is a faith based book and even properly quotes scriptures to keep in tune with the Bible’s teachings. Feranmi’s character proved to me that God is much bigger than we are as people. Her background, culture, and race did not play into how Alex felt about her. As long as her belief in God was the same as his, he did not waiver in his love for her. Even after not seeing her for four years, he loved her. When she lay unconscious in the hospital shortly after their argument, he never left her side.That’s love. During the entire story Alex maintained his friendship with Feranmi. Besides his faith in God, that’s what kept their relationship together. My favorite quote from the book, “I was scared of us. You were my unexpected blessing and I had no idea how to handle it.”

I would recommend this book to a person who can appreciate literary entertainment on a Christian level. If you are looking for a sexually charged book, this is not it. If you are a person who likes to make sure the scriptures match up to the book, you will not be disappointed. It is a good read and a wonderful love story with a biblical foundation.

Reviewed by Angela T.
Mztiffanydivine Book Reviewers

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