When the Cypress Whispers by Yvette Manessis Corporon

Source: TLC Book Tours and HarperCollins
Hardcover, 368 pages
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When the Cypress Whispers by Yvette Manessis Corporon melds the island tranquility of Greece’s Erikousa with the Greek Gods and Goddesses and whispering of the Cypress, creating a modern-day mythology.  Daphne is a modern woman, her heart heavy with the loss of her first husband and her struggles as a single mother rising to the top in New York City’s restaurant scene.  She comes back to her island home to have a traditional Greek wedding, despite her fiance Stephen’s misgivings about constrained traditions, and to reconnect with her Yia-yia (grandmother).

“In hushed, reverent tones, Yia-yia insisted that the cypresses had their own secret language that traveled between the trees on the gentle morning breeze and quieted down again as the afternoon stillness set in.”  (page 4-5 ARC)

The juxtaposition between Daphne’s American life of being always on the go and struggling to make time even for her daughter is clear once she returns to the island.  It is not that as a child life was so much more care-free (though it was), but life on the island is slower and more connected to family and tradition than it is in the business world and career-focused life Daphne was building for herself.  Evie, her daughter, was named for her great-grandmother, but she’s never met her or been to the island until now.  Corporon’s focus on Daphne brings together the family story as it shifts between her childhood, her time in America, and the present time with the wedding planning.  Tensions are increased as a mysterious man, Yianni, begins making assumptions about her and seems too close to her grandmother.  A WWII mystery is revealed and Daphne sees the error of her judgments and realizes that she may have more in common with this mystery man than she first expected.

When the Cypress Whispers by Yvette Manessis Corporon has it all — well-drawn characters, mythology and tradition, love and loss, and the power of family.  An emotional, heartfelt novel about the traditions and cultures that make us who we are and the dangers of committing halfway or only looking at the surface.

Photo credit Dia Dipasupil

About the Author:

Yvette Manessis Corporon is an Emmy Award-winning writer, producer, and author. She is currently a senior producer with the syndicated entertainment news show Extra. In addition to her Emmy Award, Yvette has received a Silurian Award for Excellence in Journalism, and the New York City Comptroller and City Council’s Award for Greek Heritage and Culture. She is married to award-winning photojournalist David Corporon. They have two children and live in New York.

Find out more about Yvette at her website, follow her on Twitter, and connect with her on Facebook.



7th book for 2014 European Reading Challenge; It is set in Greece.




20th book for 2014 New Author Challenge.




12th book for 2014 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge.




9th book (WWII) for the 2014 War Challenge With a Twist.




  1. How did I miss that this one has a WWII connection?? I’ll have to borrow it from you at some point. It sounds fantastic.

  2. This sounds like a not-to-be missed read!

    Thanks for being on the tour Serena. I’m featuring your review on TLC’s Facebook page today.

  3. It’s amazing that the poem was written on the fly. It’s just perfect. Each line flows into the next one. I enjoyed reading it.