Monday, December 28, 2020

Excerpt Tour and Giveaway: Rise and Fall of My Beloved by Utanu MAA

Welcome to my stop on the excerpt tour for Rise and Fall of My Beloved by Utanu MAA. This tour was organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. On my stop, I have an exclusive excerpt from the book as well as the tour wide giveaway for a chance to win a $20 Amazon or Barnes & Noble gift card. Be sure to follow the rest of the tour for more exclusive excerpts. Enjoy!
--
Title: Rise and Fall of My Beloved
Author: Utanu MAA
Publisher: Tellwell Talent
Publication Date: October 27th 2020
Print Length: 59 pages
Genre: Poetry
~
Rise and Fall of My Beloved is a collection of poetry and prose about resilience—about the experience of stigma and rejection, disease and suffering, love and care, loss and grief—and also a testimony of gratitude, forgiveness and togetherness. Each of its three parts is a journey through life's struggles, pain and loss, all of which require an inner force to overcome, build, rebuild, succeed and heal: resilience. It expresses an undercurrent to an imposed destiny or stigma.

Based on the life experience of my late brother, Rise and Fall of My Beloved is a tribute to mankind's resilience to overcome adversities. The book takes readers from his vulnerable childhood as a neglected orphan set to die, through a childhood in which he was bullied, to his rise as an accomplished engineer, and sadly to his fall as a dying patient of HIV/AIDS. Each poem depicts the essence of unconditional love and care, the dignity of dying of AIDS, forgiveness, and family bond. This book is a manifesto of my brother's exceptional resilience, the best memory of him that will live forever. It is an invitation, an inspiration, a reflection that, when mankind encounters struggles, disease, pain, death, loss, grief, we have to grieve and heal, and rebuild.

---
EXCLUSIVE EXCERPT:
The Creation

And God saw everything that he had made,

and behold, it was very good…” (Genesis 1:31, ESV.)

But what have we done to the creation, then?

What went wrong in our entire world?

Why have we killed it? Why are we hiding?

And you, Zola, what have you done to your precious life?

And God saw everything that he had made, and behold…

Wait! Is it still “very good”?

You, Zola, you were a good, beautiful creature,

A loving one now dearly missed forever.

With an everlasting love I hug you, again and again,

In a last attempt of closeness with you invisible but present.

A drop of tears in my eyes, a memory of your scent,

But you are already gone. I grieve to the core.

Silence and silence, forever. 

Your life, though short, was a manifesto of blessings:

Resilience, unconditional love, and care.

For the man you became after all, I give thanks and praises.

While you are entering into grace and sublime light,

I am embracing the inevitable emptiness

But with certitude that, no matter the flow of time,

I will always love you dearly.

I will miss you immensely
---
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
I am Utanu MAA. I live in Toronto and work as a public servant within the Ontario Court of Justice. Originally from the Democratic Republic of Congo in Africa, where I studied French Literature and Law before migrating to Canada in 1991, and thereafter studied Fashion Marketing, Paralegal and Law (1year) programs. In 2004, I was a recipient of a prize for the Poetry contest organized by Canada Heritage during the celebration of the Francophonie. "Couleur d'une langue" (The Color of a language), my unpublished poem about the diversity and different accents that give rhythm and power to a language to become an umbrella of one identity. "Rise and Fall of My Beloved" is also my own journey into unconditional love and care, and the resilience to deal with pain, loss, grief, to grieve, heal and continue with life after my brother's death.

---
GIVEAWAY:
Utanu MAA will be awarding a $20 Amazon or Barnes & Noble gift card to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter. To increase your chance of winning, leave a comment at a different stop on the tour each day. Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

123 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Utanu Maa ademafandu1993@gmail.com
      Thank you for having me on this book tour.

      Delete
    2. I would like to express my profound gratitude to Goddess Fish Promotions for organizing this book tour, and again to All the ups and downs for having me on your blog tour. Thanks a lot.

      Delete
  2. Replies
    1. The book is a poetry about resilience in hard times. It is also an inspiration, an invitation, a testimony and a reflection about gratitude, love, compassion, human's dignity, loss, grieving and healing.

      Delete
  3. I like the cover. It has beautiful colors!

    abfantom at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The colors of a rainbow to express the exuberance of bauty, joy, life after a storm, positive feelings to overcone hard times and be resilient. In fact, this book is also my own journey to grieving and healing after my brother's death. A magnificent rainbow spread over a clear and blue sky just after his burial, and then disapeared. I understood that he was at peace and was laughing at me for bearing so much griefs. I promised him to grieve and heal, and express gratitude for all the blessings he had in his life. These colofs symbolise the resilience to overcome.

      Delete
  4. Replies
    1. The colors of a rainbow, an exuberance of beauty, joy, hope or serenity, all good and positive feelings which inspire and invite to resilience.

      Delete
  5. Holiday Season greetings and thank you for having me. My gratitude to every reader for their interest to my book and their comments. I really appreciate the opportunity to be on this book tour and to reply to your comments.
    Utanu Maa

    ReplyDelete
  6. congrats on the release, this sounds like a wonderful book

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Wendy. I hope that you be inspired by the gratitude and resilience lesson of the book, mostly in this time of pandemic.

      Delete
  7. Replies
    1. Hi Jamie. I was grieving when i started writing this book. It was the only way for me to speak about my pain after losing my only sibling, my brother. I was on a sick and bereavement leave and then Covid pandemic forced us all into confinement. So, I used my mornings and evenings to write for about two week to pour out all my griefs, then proofead it and send it to friends for their feedback and editing. The all process lasted few months again of reading over and over my manuscript. Covid has been bad for our health but has taught us resilience in rebuilding life with new skills.

      Delete
  8. This sounds like a very good book.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Sherry, thank you for your positive feedback. Very much apreciated.

      Delete
  9. Thank you- I've been reading a lot more poetry lately.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Rachel, poetry is like the food that nourrishes our soul and emotional for our wellbeing. Keep reading it.

      Delete
  10. Replies
    1. Hi Deborah,
      Thank you for getting in touch. Covid pandemic forced into confinement and gave time to finish writing this book in June 2020. I was on a sick and bereavement leave in January 2020 when I started writing my first draft. The book is about a true and personal life experience of loss, grieving and healing which is a testimony of resilience. Having experienced the these universal themes and reality of mankind's life made it easy for me to write. Then in February, I sent my manuscript to friends for their feedbacks, reviews and editing. I spent time from the mid April to June, every morning and evening, reading over and over the marking comments, accepting or rejecting them, and proofreading the final copy before submitting it to a professional editor and publisher. In summary, this is my process of writing. Thanks for your question

      Delete
  11. Looks so good! Hope you are having a wonderful holiday!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Victoria. Thank you for stopping by and for your kindness. Have a marvelous holiday too and mostly, a Happy and Healthy New Year 2021. Let us stay resilient, all together!

      Delete
  12. Poetry about resilience is something we should all read right now.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Indeed Lisa. Resilience keeps our Humanity moving on and on from time to time despite adversities. We are mankinds, designed to stand after falling. Resilient at this hard time of pandemic. Wishing you a Happy and Healthy New Year 2021.

      Delete
  13. I always enjoy reading nice poetry.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Calvin, I hope you like my book too. It speaks about a true story of a human being and his existantial struggles from an early age up to death, and the resilience to overcome each time. You will exit this reading journey not only inspired by resilience but also with a lesson of gratitude even in hard times because gratitude leads to and nourishes resilience. On that note, I wish you a Happy New year 2021.

      Delete
  14. Interesting summary. Looks like a good read.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Paula. Thank you for stopping by and for your kind comment. I really appreciate it. I wish you read my book and be inspired. My writing is an inspiration, an invitation and testimony. A Happy New Year to you.

      Delete
  15. I like that this book has to do with resilience.
    We are really needing it now with the pandemic.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Barbara. Thank you for your empowering comment. Let us stay resilient and safe, and carry our Humanity strong. Wishing you a Happy New Year 2021.

      Delete
  16. Replies
    1. Thank you Molli. The book is inspirational. Take care and my best wishes of Happy New Year to you.

      Delete
  17. This sounds like a really good and interesting book!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi David. Thanks for stopping by and taking time to write such an appreciative comment about my book. Stay resilient despite the hard times. Happy New Year.

      Delete
  18. Replies
    1. Thanks Debbie for checking on my book. I hope your holiday season is happy. Wishing you a Prosperous New Year.

      Delete
  19. Nice book cover and the book sounds interesting.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Deb. Indeed! A nice book cover just as I envisaged it with a very meaningful reason as explained in a reply above. The colors are from the rainbow depicted on the cover to symbolize the exuberance of joy, life, hope or serenity, all good feelings after the storm, just like the resilience in hard times. Happy New Year.

      Delete
  20. Replies
    1. Thank you Pippirose for your lovely comment. I hope you well and safe. I wish you read my poetry. Check the giveaway
      Wishing you a Happy New Year 2021.

      Delete
  21. The cover is amazing. The colors are great!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Jeanna. Thank you for stopping by and liking the cover. The reason being of the colors is explained in some replies above. These colors represent the rainbow, the exultation and gratitude that instill resilience after the storm or in hard times like now. Happy New Year 2021.

      Delete
  22. Nice cover. It sounds like an interesting book. Thank you for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My pleasure, Diana. Thank you for checking on my book tour. I really appreciate your comment and wish you a Happy New Year.

      Delete
  23. Replies
    1. All the best to you too, Deborah, and Happy New Year.

      Delete
  24. This book sounds awesome!!! I love poetry.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Tammy. Thank you for stopping by and being so appreciative of my book. Please check for the giveaway. Happy New Year 2021.

      Delete
  25. I enjoyed the excerpt. Thank you for the giveaway!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Debbi. Thank you for stopping by and kindly leaving a comment. I am glad that you got the giveaway for the book. I really appreciate that you took time to read the excerpt and like it. I wish you enjoy reading all the poem. Happy New Year.

      Delete
  26. I love poetry! I have been writing and reading it since I was little!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Bonnylynn, you are right. Poetry nourishes our inerself and lift us up. Writing or reading poetry is inspiring or finding a purpose, strengh, hope, love...to fill us with humanity. I hope you continie to write and read peotry. Happy New Year.

      Delete
  27. I've always been a fan of poetry, sounds like a good one

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, thank you for stopping by. I hope you read this book and like it, and be inspired. Check the giveaway. Stay resilient and safe. I wish you a Happy New Year.

      Delete
  28. This sounds like a great collection of works of poetry/prose

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi katie, thank you for your valuable comment. This book is a collection of 31 poems written to inspire. Check for the giveaway. I wish you a Happy New Year. Take care and stay resilient and safe

      Delete
  29. The excerpt is interesting. Thank you for sharing it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was my pleasure to share it wit you and all the readers. Wishing you a Happy New Year.

      Delete
  30. Replies
    1. Thank you Kim for stopping by. Happy New Year.

      Delete
  31. Hi Jamie, thank you for checking on me. I like to make every day a best day for humanity, including myself. Inspired by my brother's resilience as described in my book, I have learned to count my blessings every day and be grategul, and happy. Spending time with my family is the best moments for me. I believe that there is no such best day by itself but the best day that we make. This is the essence of resilience, mankind's resilience. For me, one day stand out this year: the day when I completely finished my manuscript. Because it ended my grieving and started my healing, and opened my road to resiliency. I hope this answer satisfy you. Happy New Year 2021. Stay sage and resilient.

    ReplyDelete
  32. What are some tips for writer's block?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Jamie. Thank you for getting in touch. Great question! Tips for writer's block: take a break from pen and note bloc or computer, and do some activity that you really like to relax your brain. E.g. drink a glass of cool water and then go for
      walk in the nature/trails, or listen to some classical or jazz instrumental music, or take a free noise nap or with some lovely soft music in the background and clear your mind and let the music rule your being at that moment,or read something different and uplifting... I simply mean take a break and relax until your inerself speaks to you again about your writing theme. I do all this and it works well. I hope this answer responds to your question. Have a Happy New Year 2021. Stay safe and resilient.

      Delete
  33. Replies
    1. I wish you a great day too Debbi. Thanks you.

      Delete
  34. Replies
    1. Hi and thank you for liking the cover. I have explained the meaning of the cover in my replies above, please read them to understand the cover. But I can tell you that it is exactly as I envisaged it and instructed the designer. The rainbow colors to express life after the storm, the resilience to overcome hard times, like now when we are all taxed by Covid. Please take note of the book giveaway and enter the contest. Happy New Year

      Delete
  35. sounds super cool!

    mia2009(at)comcast(dot)net

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Edye and thank you for stopping by, and for your interest. I hope that you have noticed the book giveaway and have entered the contest. My best wishes for you for a Happy and Healthy New Year 2021.

      Delete
  36. Replies
    1. Hi Jamie, thank you for stopping by and kindly leaving a comment. I stayed home and spent valuable time with my family at the New Year. We had everything that we needed to celebrate and enjoy ourselves, and CHEERS!!! I hope your holiday season was marvelous. I wish you the best in 2021: Happiness, good health, peace and prosperity.

      Delete
  37. Replies
    1. Hi Deborah, nice to see you stopping by again and kindly leaving a message, and spreading the good vibes. I wish you a WONDERFUL DAY AND HAPPY NEW YEAR!

      Delete
  38. What are your writing resolutions?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Jamie, thanks for visiting my tour again and for your question.
      My resolution in 2021 is to spend more valuable time with my family, to slow down the fast pace life, and express gratitude daily and be happy despite the imperfection of human existence. Life is a great Gift overall. Happy New year to you.

      Delete
  39. What will you be doing to help your writing career in the new year?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Read more other authors and genre, and different subjects to learn more and better myself and keep writing. Have a great day Jamie

      Delete
  40. Replies
    1. Hi Debbi, have a marvelous day too! thank you

      Delete
  41. What's your tips for dealing with road blocks?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Stay positive, determine and focus on your goal. BE RESILIENT to overcome... Take care

      Delete
  42. Replies
    1. Do not let it break you and turn to positive people with positive speech to re boost your self-esteem. Know yourself and what you value. Take care and have a great day

      Delete
  43. What do you do when you're feeling sad?

    ReplyDelete
  44. I sing or listen to nice music. I works for me.
    Thank you and have a marvelous day.

    ReplyDelete
  45. Replies
    1. Hi Deborah. Nice to hear from you again. How are you? I hope you are well. It is a great pleasure for me to have your visit during my book tour. I look forward to reading your kind comment again. Stay safe and good night

      Delete
    2. Thank you. I am doing well staying in. Stay safe as well.

      Delete
  46. What's your favourite ghost story?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Do you have any? How about you telling me yours first? I cann't wait to know it, Jamie. Stay safe and resilient. Cheers for the New Year!!! We made it. Take care.

      Delete
  47. Replies
    1. Thanks Deborah. Stay safe and resilient. Good night

      Delete
  48. Replies
    1. Hi Alisha, thank you very much for checking me out. I am pleased that you visit my book tour and express a great impression of the book. Please take time, if you can, to read some other excerpts posts on my facebook author page @AuthorUtanuMaa. Also, check the giveaway and enter the contest for a win. Thank you kindly and good night.

      Delete
  49. What do you do when you feel lost?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I pray and ask for guidance and peace from the Omnipotent or God

      Delete
  50. Lovely cover! Have a great day!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Doreen for stopping by and your kind comment. Good night!

      Delete
  51. sounds like a fun one

    ReplyDelete
  52. LAST DAY
    Thanks for the contest.

    ReplyDelete
  53. How has quarantine affected your writing?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It has been positive because I had time to write and publish my book. So, something good can come out of our misery. It is about staying positive and resilient.

      Delete
  54. Sounds great, I like the cover.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Susan. I am pleased to read you comment. Thank you

      Delete
  55. Replies
    1. Hi Holly and thank you for stopping by. I love reading your comment. Very much appreciated. I write for a purpose. So, i hope that you be inspired when you read my book and find the message that speaks to you. Thank you kindly and greatly.

      Delete