Huge thanks to Evolved Publishing and cover artist extraordinaire D. Robert Pease, who took my jumbled vision for the cover and translated it into art that gives a sense of place, mood and genre.
I hope you like it as much as I do. It’s hard to believe that I’ll be holding it in my hands soon. Let me know what you think!
In case you missed it the first time, here’s the blurb:
Sometimes we can’t escape the webs we are born into. Sometimes we are the architects of our own fall.
Akash Choudry wants a love for all time, not an arranged marriage. Still, under the weight of parental hopes, he agrees to one. He and Jaya marry in a cloud of colour and spice in Bombay. Their marriage has barely begun when Akash embarks on an affair.
Jaya cannot contemplate sharing her husband with another woman, or looking past his indiscretions as her mother suggests. Cornered by sexual politics, she takes her fate into her own hands in the form of a lit match.
Nothing endures fire. As shards of their past threaten their future, will Jaya ever bloom into the woman she can be, and will redemption be within Akash’s reach?
And the opening scene:
The sun hung like a molten pendant on the horizon as Akash rolled away from his sleeping wife. He cursed as the bed creaked in protest, threatening to wake Jaya. He tiptoed across their bedroom, heavy with the Indian heat, and stubbed his toe in his eagerness to escape the confines of his marriage and reach his lover. In his arms he carried neatly folded clothes, and he eased through the door without a look back.
Safely on the other side of the threshold, Akash’s heart rate slowed. He dressed quickly and headed out into the daylight, where honking rickshaws already jostled for space on the road despite the early hour. He threaded his way to university through littered streets, where rats the size of his forearm fought with street urchins for the right to scraps.
“Soraya.” Her name felt like sherbet on his tongue.
Fifteen minutes later, he turned a corner into the university grounds, and there she sat on a bench nestled amongst roses, a woman secure in the knowledge of her own beauty and her hold on him.
Aargh, I’m a bag of nerves, but so excited for you to enter this world I have been living in!