Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Unexpected Gifts by SR Mallery

02_Unexpected GiftsPublication Date: April 16, 2013

Mockingbird Lane Press

Formats: eBook, Paperback

Genre: Historical Fiction

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Can we learn from our ancestral past? Do our relatives’ behaviors help mold our own? In "Unexpected Gifts," that is precisely what happens to Sonia, a confused college student, heading for addictions and forever choosing the wrong man. Searching for answers, she begins to read her family’s diaries and journals from America’s past: the Vietnam War, Woodstock, and Timothy Leary era; Tupperware parties, McCarthyism, and Black Power; the Great Depression, dance marathons, and Eleanor Roosevelt; the immigrant experience and the Suffragists. Back and forth the book journeys, linking yesteryear with modern life until finally, by understanding her ancestors' hardships and faults, she gains enough clarity to make some right choices.

My review:
Five Stars
Copy received from Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours for an honest review.

"Unexpected Gifts" by SR Mallery was full of many unexpected surprises and twists and turns.  Mallery's story was heartbreaking, sweet and fulfilling.  The heroine, Sonia, was less than perfect. She was constantly making wrong decisions and choosing wrong people in her life.  Aside from her bad choice in relationships she also struggles with addiction.  Sonia is very lost and doesn't seem to be able to find her path.  One mysterious trip to her families attic takes her on a journey to the past.  When Sonia digs into her ancestral path she discovers that her family participated in the woman's suffrage movement.  During this adventure Sonia is able to clear her mind and find her path.  The author was able to skillfully transport Sonia from the past to the present and connect her journey with her families.  I really enjoyed this story. I liked Sonia and found her to be very human and endearing.  I also loved learning about this point in history where woman fought for equal footing.  I highly enjoyed and recommend this story.

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Praise for Unexpected Gifts

“S.R. Mallery has caught the defining moments in the lives of one working class, upward striving family, as each one of them benefits from and contributes to the growth and setbacks of America itself…A rich and involving book, the author has written a gem. –Dorothy Salisbury Davis, A Gentle Murderer, Lullaby of Murder, The Pale Betrayer, etc.

“S.R. Mallery, with her strong sense of history and deft narrative skills, shows us one American family’s fascinating journey through flashpoints of American history, as a modern day young woman discovers the spirited narratives of her forbears, and is inspired to take charge of her own life…. an impressive, wonderfully thought out and well-told first novel.” –Carla Davidson, former Senior Editor at American Heritage Magazine

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About the Author03_S.R. Mallery

S.R. Mallery has worn various hats in her life.

First, a classical/pop singer/composer, she moved on to the professional world of production art and calligraphy. Next came a long career as an award winning quilt artist/teacher and an ESL/Reading instructor. Her short stories have been published in descant 2008, Snowy Egret, Transcendent Visions, The Storyteller, and Down In the Dirt.

"Unexpected Gifts", her debut novel, is currently available on Amazon. "Sewing Can Be Dangerous and Other Small Threads", her collection of short stories, Jan. 2014, both books by Mockingbird Lane Press.

For more information please visit S.R. Mallery's website. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads.

Unexpected Gifts Blog Tour Schedule.

Monday, September 1

Review at Bookish

Review at Unshefish

Wednesday, September 3

Review at Reading Room Book Reviews

Guest Post at Just One More Chapter

Thursday, September 4

Review at WTF Are You Reading?

Friday, September 5

Spotlight at What Is That Book About

Monday, September 8

Guest Post & Giveaway at Passages to the Past

Tuesday, September 9

Review at Beth's Book Reviews

Review at CelticLady's Reviews

Thursday, September 11

Review at Book Nerd

Friday, September 12

Review at A Book Geek

Spotlight at From the TBR Pile

Spotlight & Giveaway at So Many Precious Books, So Little Time

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