Lena Lau works had to be just like every other undergraduate student in her business classes at University in the hyper competitive city of Singapore. She is hardworking and determined to keep her curse under control with the goal of never having to use it.
If Lena cannot control her curse, she cannot complete her degree and fulfil her goal of leaving her curse behind and enjoying an uncomplicated life. The new shop assistant, Amsyar, at her grandma’s Traditional Chinese Medicine shop, accepts Lena for who she is, not who she could become. His acceptance attracts Lena even as events pull her away.
In order to stay on track, Lena suppresses her power and never uses it. This is the only way for Lena to live a normal life. Unfortunately, her grandma knows the strength of the curse and tries to pressure Lena into accepting it. She urges Lena to welcome her curse as her birthright and join her ancestors in healing.
After her best friend suffers a near death experience and Lena unwillingly uses her curse to save her, she becomes increasingly thrust into situations where her power forces itself into the open. When she continues to encounter episodes where her power flashes to the surface, her hopes of keeping her increasingly unwieldy power under control fade.
The stakes of embracing her power are high. Lena would have to give up her dreams of building a business empire and work with her curse, obliterating her free will. The pressure to change comes from all angles as she puts off her grandma, her friend’s advice and the increasing instances of her curse, giving her no choice but to obey.
A successful businessman, Mr Goh takes action to force Lena to confront her curse in the most violent of acts to drive her to use her power. It will take facing an unjust death for Lena to choose her birthright over her dreams to correct a terrible wrong. In one life altering moment, Lena embraces her power for good to fight evil and final realises it is not a curse, but a part of her that is a gift. This epiphany stops Lena from running, and she stands to fight for what she has always believed in. Lena understands this is the only way to stop others trying to use her. In accepting her gift, Lena accepts who she has been all along and that realisation brings not fear, but determination.
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SJ Garland is a writer and author of several Historical Adventure books, who also writes Contemporary Romance under the pen name P Nelson.
A Canadian expat who has spent over a decade living all over the world, Garland is interested in learning people’s stories, sharing their history and understanding their lives.
She has published close to twenty books in several different genres including Contemporary Romance, Historical Romance and Historical Adventure. The Rebirth of Bao is her first foray into Magic Realism incorporating her love of the mystical with a splash of Singapore.