Smorgasbord Children’s Cafe and Bookstore – New author on the shelves – How Polly Became a Pirate:Polly’s Piralympics Book 1) by Jann Weeratunga

Delighted to feature Jann Weeratunga’s books in the new Children’s Cafe and Bookstore and today I am featuring the first book in the How Polly Became a Pirate:Polly’s Piralympics Book 1)

About the book

Polly the Baby Parrot is stolen from her nest in Africa and ends up in Tobermoray, Scotland.There in a pet shop, she is bullied by village boys until rescued by Captain Hake. Then she starts her training to become a Pirate.This interactive book is a must for parents and teachers to help them identify if a child is being bullied at school or their surrounding environment, without the child feeling they are snitching.

One of the recent reviews for the book

MEC 5.0 out of 5 stars Adventures and entertainment all in one  Reviewed in the United States on June 21, 2020

I loved the character of Polly and how she develops over the course of this book. My granddaughter and I read it together and both of us were very drawn to her as a hero. It took us a couple of days to read as we wanted to enjoy every paragraph. We’re glad we read this one together first. She mentioned she would like to read another in the future.

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK

The books in the series and other books by Jann Weertunga

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US –  And: Amazon UK –  Follow Jann: Goodreads

About Jann Weeratunga

Jann Weeratunga was born in London in 1963. She has lived and worked in London, UK: Sri Lanka: UAE and Bahrain. Currently, she lives in Johannesburg, South Africa with her four fur babies.

She was a Primary School Teacher and a Scout/Cub Leader for over 20 years and now visits schools giving workshops on writing books, as well as anti-bullying talks.

She has written three children’s books series – the Polly’s Piralympics Series, the Toucane Series and the Hettie Series

The Polly’s Piralympics series was inspired by the closing ceremony of the 2012 London Paralympic Games. In his closing speech, Sir Phillip Craven told of how a young boy was reading with his mother. In the book, he saw a man with an eye patch, a hook for a hand, a parrot on his shoulder and a wooden leg.

When asked who it was, he said:

“Well he has only one leg, so he must be an Olympian.”

Such was the strength of the London 2012 Paralympics that it changed peoples’ perceptions of disability forever. The speech made her both laugh and cry and gave her the inspiration for this series of books which are both unique in concept as well as content.

The Toucane Series, for younger readers 5-8 year-olds, are stand-alone stories, with colouring pages.

The Hettie Series ages 3-6 are colouring-in books with a simple story.

Connect to Jann

Website: Kids Books Without Borders
Twitter: @Jannweeratunga
Facebook Author Page: Jann Weeratunga

Thank you for dropping in today and it would be great if you could spread the news of Jann’s books.. thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Poetry – Colleen Chesebro’s Weekly Tanka Challenge – Butterfly #Cinquain – Embraced by Sally Cronin

This week for Colleen Chesebro’s Weekly Tanka Challenge 190 Colleen has given us the prompts Circled and Squared and I have chosen the synonyms ‘Embraced and Balanced’ for my Butterfly Cinquain.

Baby, Mother, Infant, Child, Female, Happy, White, Joy


and protected
within their mother’s arms
babies view the world in safety
and calm.
Supported then by loving hands
balanced on two small feet
first steps are made
in life.

Feet, Children'S Feet, Baby, Barefoot


©Sally Cronin 2020


If you would like to participate in this week’s challenge here is the link again: Colleen Chesebro’s Weekly Tanka Challenge 190 

You can find recent reviews for my latest release and other books: Sally’s books and reviews 2019/2020

Thanks for dropping by and I hope you have enjoyed.. thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Posts from My Archives – Book Reviews – #Mystery John W. Howell, #DystopianSciFi Terry Tyler,

Welcome to a new series where I will be sharing a selection of book reviews I have posted in the last few years. I would like to take the opportunity to showcase books that I have enjoyed and their authors and if you have not read the books, I hope it will encourage you to check them out.

My reviews for current books has now moved to Thursdays.

The first review that I would like to share from 2017 is for Circumstances of Childhood by John. W. Howell.

About Circumstances of Childhood.

When a former pro football star and broadcaster, now a Wall Street maven is accused of insider trading, will he be able to prove his innocence and expose those who are guilty?

Greg and his boyhood pal dreamed of big success in professional football and then later in business. Greg was the only one to live the dream. Now the founder of an investment fund Greg is faced with a routine audit finding by the SEC. The audit points to irregularities and all the tracks lead to Greg. The justice department hits him with an indictment of 23 counts of fraud, money laundering, and insider trading. His firm goes bust, and Greg is on his own.

His best friend knows he is innocent but has been ordered under penalty of eternal damnation not to help.

If you enjoy stories of riches to rags, redemption, brotherly love, and a little of the paranormal, Circumstance of Childhood will keep you riveted.

My review for Circumstances of Childhood 30th December 2017

For me Circumstances of Childhood was a story in  three phases that are brought together with the common thread of a lifelong friendship that transcends time and space.

Greg Petros and his friend Keith have known each other since they were four years old, and whilst Greg struggled with personal tragedy, Keith was always there by his side. Eventually, Greg moves in with Keith’s family and they truly become brothers in name.

This brotherhood extends to the football pitch where the two design plays that outfox the defence and propel them both into the top college team. I am not even going to pretend to understand the plays, but even I can admire the sleight of hand and ball that made them a winning team.

However their paths deviate in their late teens, and eventually Greg becomes a highly regarded player, amassing a fortune. This leads to a successful broadcast career and then to a stable and well regarded financial enterprise. Unfortunately, with every success there is a risk that someone will make an effort to bring you down. Despite creating some solid plays that are a reflection of those on the football field, Greg finds himself in a very difficult situation as his financial empire begins to implode.

In the third phase of the story, Keith and Greg are reunited and work together to find out the reasons and the culprits behind the financial disaster. It is clear that their friendship is as strong as ever, and joined by Greg’s daughter Constance the mystery is unravelled. This attracts danger and violence to their doorstep that brings the story to a close with a thrilling encounter.

This book is a departure from John Howell’s previous books and the focus is definitely on the power of friendship and love. The paranormal elements are dealt with gently so that you have no problem in believing in their inclusion in the story. I would recommend to anyone who enjoys a combination of American Football, High Finance and justice served.

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – And : Amazon UK


Other books by John Howell

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon USand on: Amazon UK – Goodreads:John Howell Goodreads Blog: John W. Howell. com – Twitter@HowellWave

John began his writing as a full-time occupation after an extensive business career. His specialty is thriller fiction novels, but John also writes poetry and short stories. His first book, My GRL, introduces the exciting adventures of the book’s central character, John J. Cannon. The second Cannon novel, His Revenge, continues the tension. The final book in the trilogy, Our Justice, launched in September 2016 concludes the thriller series. John’s fourth book Circumstances of Childhood, launched in October of 2017 tells a different thriller story of riches to rags, football, Wall Street, brotherly love, redemption, and inspiration with a touch of paranormal to keep you riveted. The fifth book is a collaboration with the ​award-winning author, Gwen Plano titled The Contract. Heavenly bodies become concerned about the stability of the Earth and send two of their own to risk eternal salvation in order to save the planet. The Contract achieved number one status in its genre. All books are available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle editions.

John lives in Lakeway, Texas with his wife and their spoiled rescue pets.

The next review is from December 2017 and is for Tipping Point: Project Renova Book One by Terry Tyler. This was the first book I read by Terry and certainly not the last and I have enjoyed all this series and other books since.

About the book

‘I didn’t know danger was floating behind us on the breeze as we walked along the beach, seeping in through the windows of our picture postcard life.’

The year is 2024. A new social networking site bursts onto the scene. Private Life promises total privacy, with freebies and financial incentives for all. Across the world, a record number of users sign up.

A deadly virus is discovered in a little known African province, and it’s spreading—fast. The UK announces a countrywide vaccination programme. Members of underground group Unicorn believe the disease to be man-made, and that the people are being fed lies driven by a vast conspiracy.

Vicky Keating’s boyfriend, Dex, is working for Unicorn over two hundred miles away when the first UK outbreak is detected in her home town of Shipden, on the Norfolk coast. The town is placed under military controlled quarantine and, despite official assurances that there is no need for panic, within days the virus is unstoppable.

In London, Travis begins to question the nature of the top secret data analysis project he is working on, while in Newcastle there are scores to be settled…

This is the first book in the Project Renova series; the second, Lindisfarne, is now available, with the follow-up, UK2, due around late spring/early summer, 2018. Patient Zero, a collection of stand-alone short stories featuring minor characters from the series, is also available.

My review for Tipping Point: Project Renova Book One by Terry Tyler 2nd December 2017

When I first read books by Nevil Shute in 1964, I was aged eleven and pinching library books from the bottom of my father’s stack on his bedside cabinet. The first, “What Ever Happened to the Corbetts” was fascinating because it was set in the Solent and Southampton, the next city over to our home in Portsmouth. “On the Beach” and “A Town Like Alice” followed and all three books were clearly not intended for someone of my tender years. But I loved them.

In fact I went on to read all of Nevil Shute’s books more than once. Most of them were set in a time of war or the breakdown of world order, and their protagonists had to find a way to survive. I believe Nevil Shute would have enjoyed Terry Tyler’s writing style and her book Tipping Point very much.

I believe that novels such as this are essential reading; to shake us out of institutionalised complacency.

You do not need to be in a prison or under some form of confinement to be hide-bound by rules and expected behaviour. Not many of us today live under the radar; usually the banks have all our money, our pensions are managed by the government or private investment firms and we pay for everything by debit or credit card, and at some point in the near future, we are expected to go cash free. Our phones can be tracked and our calls listened to, and for many of us, our lives are open books, laid out for all to read on social media.

We also believe that we live in a democracy and that our freedom to vote means that those in office, chosen by us, have our best interests at heart. Very few of us have a ‘Plan B’ in place should the worst happen. We wouldn’t want to be thought of being one of those crazy ‘Preppers’ who live in the woods in bunkers with canned food would we!

Vicki and her daughter Lottie, Dex and his conspiracy theorist colleagues, their friends and neighbours, and even those working on the fringes of government, are about to find out what happens when the institution begins to implode.

It starts with a little known virus that is reported in the news. It causes some concern, but it is in Africa and it has happened before, hasn’t it? It won’t happen in England, despite its current woes of unemployment, over-population and trade deficit will it? And anyway, the government moves quickly to put an effective vaccination programme in place. What could possibly go wrong?

Tipping Point illustrates extremely well what happens when the thin veneer of civilisation is threatened and it is every man and woman for themselves.

You might think to yourself that with all the depressing stories in the press every day, you might not enjoy reading a book that takes that doom and gloom to the next level. But you will because Tipping Point is well written by Tyler with a great plot that keeps you riveted from the first page. The novel has some characters that are so believable, you think you might actually know them personally. You will experience the loss of all they take for granted through their eyes and their relationships, despising those who have set this catastrophic event in motion. You will cheer them on as they take risks, overcome their fears and scrabble to regain some form of a future. It might even encourage you to start putting a ‘Plan B’ in place.

I am really looking forward “Lindisfarne”, book two of Project Renova, waiting for me on my reader. My go bag is almost packed, my larder is stocked with dried goods and my camping stove is at the ready. I am prepared to travel to this Holy Island and see what is to come next.

I have no hesitation in giving five stars to Tipping Point and I am only sorry that Nevil did not have the chance to read it.

Read the other reviews and buy the book: Amazon UK – and : Amazon US

A selection of other books by Terry Tyler

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon UK – And : Amazon US – Follow Terry Tyler: GoodreadsBlog: Terry Tyler Blogspot – Twitter: @TerryTyler4

Terry Tyler is the author of twenty books available from Amazon, the latest being ‘Blackthorn’, set in a post apocalyptic England, 115 years in the future. Proud to be independently published, Terry is an avid reader and book reviewer, and a member of Rosie Amber’s Book Review Team.

Terry is a Walking Dead addict, and has a great interest in history (particularly 14th-17th century), and sociological/cultural/anthropological stuff, generally. She loves South Park, Netflix, autumn and winter, and going for long walks in quiet places where there are lots of trees. She lives in the north east of England with her husband.

Thanks for dropping in today and I hope that you will be leaving with some books..thanks Sally.



Smorgasbord Posts from My Archives -#Memoir #Waterford #Ireland #History – The Colour of Life – #Angling The Haul Of Bass 1955 by Geoff Cronin

My father-in-law, Geoff Cronin was a raconteur with a encyclopedic memory spanning his 93 years. He sadly died in 2017 but not before he had been persuaded to commit these memories of his childhood and young adulthood in Waterford in the 1920s to the 1940s.

The books are now out of print, but I know he would love to know that his stories are still being enjoyed, and so I am repeating the original series of his books that I posted in 2017. I hope those who have already read will enjoy again and that new readers will discover the wonderful colour of life in Ireland nearly 100 years ago.

The Haul Of Bass 1955

One June afternoon in the ’50s I was travelling home from Clonmel – I was “on the road” for Irish National Insurance Company at the time – and my last call of the day was in Carrick-on-Suir. A I was coming back in the car after making the call, I stopped at Francie Mullins fishing tackle shop and saw a cheap fishing rod in the window.

“It’s made out of a tank aerial” he told me, “and I got a dozen of them from a fella dealin’ in surplus war materials. A handy little rod,” he said, “ideal for spinning. Here,” he said, “let me put a spinning reel on it and you’ll see how well it feels.”

He did so, and when I picked it up it just felt right in my hand.

“You could cast with that for the day and your wrist wouldn’t get tired“, he continued. “And here’s what I’ll do with you, a hundred yards of nylon line, a German bait, the rod and the reel, the lot for a five pound note. What do you say?”

“Done,” I said, handing over the last fiver I had in this world.

As I drove home, I felt a whole new phase of my life opening up. Having been brought up by the sea, I knew all about fishing, but since getting married, I had been unable to afford the tackle etc. and at this stage, I dearly wanted to teach my sons all I knew about fishing. When I got home and told my wife about my purchase, she saw the possibilities in terms of food for the table and it was decided to try out the new rod that very evening.

So, after dinner, leaving our eldest daughter to baby-sit, my wife and I set off for Saleen, near Tramore, where a deep sea inlet, called the Rinnashark, came in by a long beach. It was known to be a good spot for Bass fishing and at that time, perhaps in July or August, shoals of Bass would come inshore on occasion and provide good sport for anyone who happened to be fishing at the time.

Tramore Bay & Saleen

However, I was not trying to catch anything that evening as the tide was low and it was a bit early in the season. I just wanted to try casting with the new rod and to get used to the feel of it.

Anyway, on arrival at Saleen I set up the rod and as it was a fine June evening, we decided to walk out along the beach to a place called Bass Point, almost a quarter of a mile distant. When we got to the spot, I made my first cast, which fell short of the channel and as I retrieved the bait, it stopped suddenly.

“Damn it” I said, “I’m caught in the weeds.”

The next second, the rod nearly jumped out of my hand and the reel sang, I was into a heavy fish and he was heading for deep water.

I put on the brake and began to play him. I didn’t think the line would hold, but taking him gently, I had him on the beach in ten minutes.

It was a beautiful Bass, easily seven pounds weight. I was elated and couldn’t wait to make another cast. Again, it fell short of the deep water, and as I wound in the bait, I knew this time I was stuck in the weeds. I gave a hard pull and the water exploded as another huge Bass broke the surface and headed out at speed for the deep channel. I checked him just before he got there, and I eased him down the beach into the slack water, where I beached him. It was a Bass a little smaller than the first one, and though I fished on for another half hour, I caught nothing else.

Geoff Cronin with another “Haul of Bass”

Meanwhile my wife, Joan, had picked up a stout piece of driftwood and some nylon cord from the beach, and we tied the fish through the gills to the stick and holding an end each, we set out to carry our catch back to the car. It should be noted here that Bass normally caught in these waters would be two or three pounds weight.

As we started back, we met two men out for a walk and they stopped us to admire our catch. They asked what weight the fish might be, and I said the big one was about seven pounds and the other one about six. There was not another sinner to be seen on the beach in any direction and we met no one else by the time we reached the car. Anyway, we weighed the fish when we got home and the bigger fish turned out to be seven and a half pounds, and the other one weighed six and a quarter. We congratulated ourselves on the catch, and after having a cup of tea and a chat, we retired for the night.

Next morning I had to go to the bank and while there a friend took me aside and said in a low voice “The Bass are in at Saleen – two guys were fishing there yesterday, and one guy got seven fish and the other guy got six.” He pressed his finger to his lips. When I got back to my office, another man rang me and said he heard that a party fishing at Saleen last night caught seventy-six Bass between them.

By lunch time I could be told that two boats had fished Saleen the previous evening, and one boat took seven boxes of Bass and the other one took six. I told my wife all this when I went home to lunch, and she could hardly believe the speed and the ramifications of the angler’s grapevine. It was likely that the pair we encountered on the beach had ended up in the local pub, and from there the story had grown not only legs, but wings as well.

By tea time, the rumours were flying to the point where we decided to drive out to Saleen after tea to see what the effect had been. We drove out the high road, which overlooked the beach and there they were, almost thirty or maybe forty anglers standing practically elbow to elbow along the beach, thrashing the water with their lines. We went to the local pub for a drink to quell our laughter, and we heard even more fabulous stories about the biggest shoal of Bass ever seen in Saleen. On our way home we stopped at the car park where weary anglers were packing up, and enquiring if they had any luck heard “No, but there was any amount of Bass here last night!” The miracle of the five loaves and two fishes came to mind, and we laughed all the way home.


Descriptions of a mean man:
“You wouldn’t see his heart on a clean plate!”
“If he was a ghost he wouldn’t give you a fright.”
“He was so mean he’d frame a ha’penny.”

©Geoff Cronin 2005

About Geoff Cronin

I was born at tea time at number 12 John Street, Waterford on September 23rd 1923. My father was Richard Cronin and my mother was Claire Spencer of John Street Waterford. They were married in St John’s Church in 1919.

Things are moving so fast in this day and age – and people are so absorbed, and necessarily so, with here and now – that things of the past tend to get buried deeper and deeper. Also, people’s memories seem to be shorter now and they cannot remember the little things – day to day pictures which make up the larger canvas of life.

It seems to me that soon there may be little or no detailed knowledge of what life was really like in the 1930s in a town – sorry, I should have said City, in accordance with its ancient charter – like Waterford. So I shall attempt to provide some of these little cameos as much for the fun of telling as for the benefit of posterity.

Thank you for visiting today and I hope you have enjoyed this glimpse of Waterford in the 1930s and 1940s courtesy of Geoff Cronin. As always your feedback is very welcome. thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Laughter Lines Extra – August 14th 2020- Another Open Mic Night with author Daniel Kemp

Author Daniel Kemp keeps us entertained daily on Facebook with his witty jokes and funny images.. by popular request he is back to do another open mic night for us here today.

And to finish up.

A young woman visits her parents and takes her fiancé to meet them. After an elaborate dinner, the mother tells her husband to find out about the young man. The father invites the fiancée to his man cave for a drink.

“So what are yer plans?” The father asks the young man.
“I am a Cambridge scholar.” He says.

“A Cambridge scholar, hmmm,” the father says. “Admirable, but what will ye do til provide a nice hoose for my daughter til live in as she is accustomed to?”
“I will study,” the young man said, “and God will provide for us.”

“And how will ye buy her a beautiful engagement ring, such as she deserves?” asks the father.
“I will concentrate on my studies,” the young man replies, “God will provide for us.”

“And children?” asks the father. “How will ye support children?” “Don’t worry, sir, God will provide,” replies the fiancé.

The conversation continues like this, and each time the father questions, the young idealist insists that God will provide.

Later, the mother asks, “How did it go, Honey?” The father answers,
“he has no job and no plans, but the good news is he thinks I’m God.”


My thanks to Danny for allowing me to raid his Facebook page…..

About Daniel Kemp

Daniel Kemp, ex-London police officer, mini-cab business owner, pub tenant and licensed London taxi driver never planned to be a writer, but after his first novel –The Desolate Garden — was under a paid option to become a $30 million film for five years until distribution became an insurmountable problem for the production company what else could he do?

In May 2018 his book What Happened In Vienna, Jack? became a number one bestseller on four separate Amazon sites: America, UK, Canada, and Australia.

Although it’s true to say that he mainly concentrates on what he knows best; murders laced by the mystery involving spies, his diverse experience of life shows in the short stories he writes, namely: Why? A Complicated Love, and the intriguing story titled The Story That Had No Beginning.

He is the recipient of rave reviews from a prestigious Manhattan publication, been described as –the new Graham Green — by a managerial employee of Waterstones Books, for whom he did a countrywide tour of signing events, and he has appeared on ‘live’ television in the UK.

A selection of books by Danny

A recent review for The Widow’s Son

Kindle Customer 5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely One of the Best  Reviewed in the United States on July 19, 2020

I cannot praise you enough on your style of writing, I have read volumes 1 and 2 of this series one after the others , stopping at the end beginning at the beginning no pause inbetween. This one the widows son first caught my attention with the title as I am a traveler from the East MM living in the Levant. Around the middle of this book to the ending you really out did yourself. Your plot looking at the long view of the world outstanding absolutely outstanding. One of the best stories i have read in a long time. Thank You. Steven

Read the reviews and buy the books also in audio: Amazon UK – And : Amazon US – follow Daniel: Goodreads – Website: Author Danny Kemp – Facebook: Books by Daniel – Twitter: @danielkemp6

My thanks to Danny for letting me share his funnies an please feel free to pass them on…have a good weekend and thanks for dropping in..Sally

Smorgasbord Posts from Your Archives -Summer 2020- Pot Luck – The Humor of Life by Pete Springer

Welcome to the current series of Posts from Your Archives… and I will be picking two posts from the blogs of those participating from the first six months of 2020. If you don’t mind me rifling through your archives… just let me know in the comments or you can find out the full scope: Posts from Your Archives – Pot Luck – 2020

This is the first post from author Pete Springer and this week I have selected a post that offers opportunities for humour in life… something we could all use right about now…

The Humor of Life

Today, I got quite a laugh when I opened the mail and found an unexpected check waiting for me. What’s so humorous about that? Shouldn’t I be planning on where to spend my good fortune? That’s where the funny part comes in. If you look closely, you will see that the check is for six cents. I’m sure I’ve never received a smaller check in my life.

Most people would not be bothered by something so trivial, but then I’m not “most people.” Moments like these are what make life hysterical. How often does the postage cost more than the check itself?

As American radio broadcaster Paul Harvey used to say, “And now, the rest of the story.” Most people hate the process of buying a vehicle because they don’t like high-pressure sales tactics. I can still remember buying my first vehicle (a pumpkin orange, 1973 Chevy Nova) from King Richard’s Cars. After that experience, I realized I needed to get better at the car buying game. I wasn’t in control, and I didn’t like that feeling. Since then, I walk into a car dealership much more informed and in control of the negotiations process. A few months back, I wrote about my latest car buying experience. Waging War at the Car Dealership  

One of the biggest consumer rip-offs is the old interest game, and yet so many of us continue to play. Banks and other lending institutions are modern-day loan sharks. Rather than donate thousands of dollars of interest over the next four-five years, I decided to pay off my loan as quickly as possible.

My wife wrote the last check to settle the balance, and the pink slip should be arriving any day. In the meantime, we must have slightly overpaid, and I was issued my six-cent refund check.

I can hardly wait to go into my bank in the next couple of days and hand over my check to see the reaction from the teller. “Would you like that in cash or deposited directly into your account? How would you like your money, sir?” Now that’s a tough decision. Should I ask for a nickel and a penny, or six pennies? Maybe I’ll ask for a dime and offer four cents in return.

Okay, I know what you’re thinking. This guy has too much time on his hands if he’s thinking about all of this useless stuff. What can I tell you? That’s the way my mind works.

It’s just that life offers us the best humor if we’re paying attention. Who would have dreamed fifty years ago that we’d be paying over a dollar for a bottle of water? Who knew I’d have to stay on hold for over thirty minutes with the cable company to figure out what’s wrong with my television remote? (More than likely, it’s the guy operating it.)

One of my favorite types of humor is irony. I recall reading a newspaper story of a traffic cop who got his license suspended for failing to pay his parking tickets. What’s better than reading a Facebook post written by someone who’s complaining about how useless Facebook is? One of my favorite real-life stories of irony involves a good friend of mine. He now manages the same apartment complex he once was evicted from. Priceless!

In the meantime, keep an eye out for me. I’ll be the guy on television in a few years doing an Infomercial about how I turned my six cents into millions. The good news is you’ll only have to pay $99 to find out how you can do it, too, with my “proven system.”😎

©Peter Springer 2020

About Pete Springer

My name is Pete Springer. I taught elementary school for thirty-one years (grades 2-6) at Pine Hill School in Eureka, CA. Even though I retired over two years ago, my passion will always lie with supporting education, kids, and teachers.

When I came out of the teaching program many years ago, I realized how unprepared I was for what was in store for me in the classroom. My college education focused mostly on learning theory rather than the practical day-to-day challenges that all teachers face. Thankfully, I had some great mentors to lean on to help support me in the early part of my career.

I have made it my mission to pay it forward to the next generation of teachers. I was a master teacher to four student teachers, and I have several former students who are now teachers, including one who teaches at my former elementary school. That is pretty cool!

One of the recent reviews for the book

Avid Reader 5.0 out of 5 stars A book I wholeheartedly enjoyed  Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 18 July 2020

Today, more than ever, children need role models and so do adults, parents too. And we need to re-learn basic responsibility and how this is a two way road.

Finding your inner voice and passion is what we all need to discover and Pete Springer paints us a vivid image in this book.

This is an entertaining read based on first hand experiences dripping with humor.

A book I wholeheartedly enjoyed although I already brought up two children.
A must read, wether you are a teacher or a parent. Grandparent too.

Pete Springer, Buy: Amazon USand: Amazon UK – Website: Pete Springer WordPressTwitter: @OfficerWoof

Thanks for dropping by today and I know that Pete would love your feedback.. thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – New Author on the Shelves -#Vampire #Thriller The Dead at Heart: Book Three of The Dead Game Series by Susanne Leist

Delighted to welcome Susanne Leist with her books to the shelves of the Cafe and Bookstore. Her featured book today is her latest book released on July 29th.
Dead at Heart: Book Three of The Dead Game Series

About the book

William’s bite bonded Shana to him, but he didn’t ask her to mate with him for life. She isn’t ready for a lifetime commitment. Now, William excludes her from his vampire meetings. Shana understands he’s an original vampire with immense powers. For them to be a couple, he has to treat as an equal partner. If William doesn’t respect her, then what are their chances of finding happiness?

Shana speaks to Linda, her best friend, of her fears.

“Paradise is an illusion.” Shana’s face grows heated as her frustration mounts. “Oasis is a haven for vampires. I’m tired of their battles. The Watchers get rid of an evil group of vamps, and another group arrives and attacks. It’s a vicious cycle. Vampires are trouble.”

“We will have a happy ending.” Linda lifts her head. “Don’t lose faith. The Watchers will protect us, and Gregg has an elite force of original vampires.” She touches Shana’s arm. “William loves you; he won’t let something happen to you.”

“The vampires keep secrets from us.” Shana swallows the lump in her throat. “I don’t want to live with vamps anymore, and I need time to decide on my relationship with William. One minute, I’m suffocating, and then the next, I’m lost without him.”

As a new enemy descends on Oasis, Florida, Shana turns to Sheriff Sam, who broke her heart. Can she trust the human-vampire?

This begins Shana’s journey to fight vampires and werewolves with Sam at her side.

An explosion at Chateau Frontenac in Quebec doesn’t stop Shana and her friends from saving their town, and maybe even the world.

One of the early reviews for the book

Shana broke up with the hybrid Sheriff and is now with William who she believes to be a full vampire. She remains conflicted throughout the novel. Who is the good guy and who isn’t. They are both in love with her thus she is safe with either of them.

This novel starts out fast and furious and remains so to the very end. Vampires are at war with each other–then there are the werewolves and even the Archangels get involved! And let’s not forget the humans!

To finally find out what is really going on and who Shana ends up with is why you will have to read this 3rd in the Dead Game series. Lots of twists and turns and even more action!

Head over to buy the book: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK

Also by Susanne Leist

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon USAnd: Amazon UK – Follow Susanne: Goodreads – Nook: Susanne Leist

About Susanne Leist

I have always loved to read. Agatha Christie, Alistair Maclean, Robert Ludlum, and many other authors filled my young imagination with intrigue and mystery. When I wasn’t reading late into the night, the TV shows–Murder She Wrote and Columbo–entertained me with murder and suspense tales.

Over the years, my taste in TV expanded to include such shows as Supernatural and The Originals. I searched for paranormal, murder mysteries, but found few at the library or bookstore. So, I wrote one.

The Dead Game, Book One of The Dead Game series, brings fantasy and surrealism to the classic murder mystery with dead bodies, suspects, and clues. It offers vampires, vampire derivatives, and a touch of romance to spice the motley mix.

The story continues in Book Two, Prey for The Dead, as The Dead vampires use an exclusive club in Disney World to infiltrate the rich and famous. As The Dead grow in power, not even the bright sunshine of Florida can weaken them. Linda and her friends join forces with human vampires–known as hybrids–to defeat the evil threatening to control Oasis. A masquerade ball and a romp through the tunnels beneath the town lead to a showdown in southern Florida’s swamps.

The Dead At Heart is Shana’s love story. Will her love for William strengthen, or will Sam lead her on a different path? At Chateau Frontenac in Quebec, Shana and her fearless friends fight for Oasis and their lives.

A career in writing has been a big leap for me. Accustomed to the number-crunching field of budgeting and the hectic commodity markets, I left my first career and M.B.A. in Finance behind to pursue my dream. I do not regret my foray into literature for one moment. Fellow authors helped me make my way through the competitive field. I write every day and even tried my hand at poetry. If someone tells you it’s too late in life to try something different, they are wrong. It is never too late to follow your heart.

Connect to Susanne

Website:Susanne Leist – Blog: Susanne Leist at WordPress – Twitter: @SusanneLeist – Facebook: Susanne Leist

Thanks for dropping in today and I hope you will be leaving with some books.. and it would be great if you could share the news of Susanne’s latest release.. thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Author Updates – #Reviews #Anthology M.J. Mallon, #Thriller Carol Balawyder, #Mystery James J. Cudney

Welcome to the Cafe and Bookstore update with recent reviews for authors on the shelves.

The first review is for This is Lockdown by M. J. Mallon with contributions in part two from writers around the world.

About the collection

An anthology and compilation of diaries, short stories, flash fiction, contributions from the ‘isolation writers,’ plus poetry written during the time of lockdown in the UK. This Is Lockdown is written from a writer’s perspective highlighting the simple pleasures of day-to-day life during such an uncertain and frightening time. It also gives a glimpse of the blogging, writing world. The book showcases several authors and their thoughts on what it is like to experience ‘isolation’ as a writer. I also discuss the handling of the pandemic and my thoughts on what might happen next. In the final part of the book I include my latest short story idea: a YA romance and various short pieces of poetry, and flash fiction inspired by the pandemic.

The full list of authors are:

Richard Dee, (Sci Fi , Steampunk, Amateur Detective author,) Catherine Fearns, (Amazon Bestselling Author of Police Procedural/Mysteries and Music Journalist,) Lynn Fraser, (Humorous Dark Comedy,) Jackie Carreira, (Writer, musician, designer and aspiring philosopher,) Willow Willers, (Poet and writer,) Sharon Marchisello, (Murder Mystery, Financial non-fiction,) Fi Phillips , (Copy writer, Author,) Jeannie Wycherley, (dark stories, suspense, horror,) Chantelle Atkins, (urban fiction, teen/YA,)Tracie Barton Barrett, (Speaker/author,) Peter Taylor Gooby, (Crime, Love Stories, Political Fiction,) Ritu Bhathal, (Chick Lit romance, poet,) Alice May , (Author, Artist and Speaker,) Miriam Owen, (Reader, Blogger, Post Doctoral Researcher and Academic,) Drew Neary and Ceri Williams (Ghost Horror, Supernatural,) Katherine Mezzacappa, (Historical Fiction/Romance,) Sally Cronin, (huge supporter of indie community/blogger/author) Debby Gies (D G Kaye), (Memoirist/NonFiction,) Adele Marie Park, (Fantasy, horror, urban fantasy,) Marian Wood, (blogger, poet and writer.) Samantha Murdoch, (Writer, Blogger,) Beaton Mabaso (blogger, African storyteller.).Frank Prem (Poet, Author) Anne Goodwin (Author, Book Blogger) Sherri Matthews (Writer, Photographer, Blogger) Jane Horwood and Melissa Santiago-Val – Community Masks for The NHS .

One of the recent reviews for the anthology on Goodreads

Jul 23, 2020 Sarah Northwood rated it Five Stars

The corona virus outbreak has been a unique time for many of us, having never experienced anything like this in our lifetimes. This moment is history is an opportunity for writers to help others by expressing this situation through diary entries, poetry, and fictional works. This is lockdown begins in just such a way as we take a look at diary entries from MJ Mallon, which were written in the moment and not only become a documentation of events from this author’s point of view but also a way of making sense of the turmoil encountered during this difficult time.

The book then moves on to poetry which is written by from people of different nationalities, this gives such an insight into how nations can be united in global events and in many ways highlights how experiences through this pandemic have created a unity for us all as humans.

Finally, the author offers us some excellent fictional short pieces illuminating how many of our ordinary routines were shaped and impacted by this pandemic. I was fortunate to have an opportunity to read an early copy of this book and was delighted to see the author putting this collection out into the world. A highly recommended read that I imagine readers of the future looking to.

Read the reviews and buy the collection: Amazon UK

And: Amazon US

 Also by M. J. Mallon

M.J.Mallon, Buy:   Amazon US – And  Amazon UK Website: M.J. Mallon – Goodreads: Goodreads – Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon

The next review is for Carol Balawyder for her thriller Warning Signs

About the book

Eugene’s research into his criminal mind is not about the why, but how to prevent his horrific crimes. Angie, a young woman starving for passion sees Eugene as her saviour from a lonely life of caring for her heroin addicted mother. How far is she willing to go in order to save her relationship with Eugene and his promise for a future together?

Detective Van Ray is out on a vindictive mission as he attempts to solve the murders of young girls in Youth Protection.

Their lives collide in a mixture of mistrust, obsession and ignoring the warning signs. A psychological thriller about human frailty and loneliness.

One of the recent reviews for the book on Goodreads

Jul 21, 2020 Janet Gogerty rated it Five Stars

More vivid than a television murder drama, this is an intelligent psychological thriller with the killer trying to understand why he could be tempted to kill and how he can stop himself. It is also the story anyone will recognise of young women looking for love, the dating game. Everyone is a stranger when you first meet them, when do we start trusting a person and when you begin dating someone how do you know if you are safe? A great story that kept me on edge all the way through.

Read the reviews and buy the book : Amazon US

and: Amazon UK

A selection of books by Carol Balawyder

Carol Balayder buy the books: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK –  Read more reviews : Goodreads – WebsiteCarol BalawyderLinkedIn: Carol Balawyder

The final review today is for Broken Heart Attack (Braxton Campus Mysteries Book 2) by James J. Cudney..

About Broken Heart Attack (Braxton Campus Mysteries Book 2)

When an extra ticket becomes available to see the dress rehearsal of King Lear, Kellan tags along with Nana D and her buddies.

When one of them dies of an apparent heart attack in the middle of second act, Nana D raises her suspicions and asks Kellan to investigate the death. With family members suddenly in debt and a secret rendezvous between an unlikely pair, Kellan learns that the Paddingtons might not be as clean-cut as everyone thinks.

But can Kellan find the killer, or will he get caught up his own stage fright?

One of the recent reviews for the book

Cecilia Salinas 5.0 out of 5 stars Great series  Reviewed in the United States on June 17, 2020

Second book in the series and it’s as enjoyable as the first one, although all the sassy comments from Nana D, the sheriff and Myriam are sometimes a bit annoying and I celebrate and cheer whenever Kellan defends himself and answers them back to stop the comments. That’s something I have always wondered, why is it okay to be sassy or bully or whatever you want to call it in books and why the character that is on the receiving end never defends himself or herself? Under the “I’m a better person flag” doesn’t work. You still need to speak up and stop the abuse. Back to the plot, I was able to solve a few plot lines but some others were a total surprise. I’ll read the next book because I want to see how the conflict between Kellan and his not-so-dead-wife Francesca gets solved.

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US

and on Amazon UK: Amazon UK

A selection of books by James J. Cudney

James J. Cudney buy the books: Amazon US andAmazon UK  – Website/Blog: This is my truth nowGoodreads: James J. Cudney – Twitter: @Jamescudney4


Thank you for dropping in today and I hope that you will be taking some books with you.. Thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Children’s Cafe and Bookstore – New Author on the Shelves – 7 – 10 years – The Adventures of Monkey and Toad: Two Remarkable Friends by Donald Lloyd Jr.

Delighted to welcome Donald Lloyd Jr. to the cafe and bookstore with his recently published The Adventures of Monkey and Toad: Two Remarkable Friends 

About the book

Ever wanted to make a new friend but were not sure how? Have you ever met someone and instantly knew that you would be friends? “The Adventures of Monkey and Toad: Two Remarkable Friends” is a story about finding a friend, learning how to be a friend and realizing that a true friend can be anyone from anywhere!

One of the early reviews for the book on Goodreads

Aug 04, 2020 Elaine rated it five stars

I was gifted access to an online copy of this book
And am so glad I chose to take a good look!
It is a picture book with an adventure that’s fun
With an important message for each and everyone.

This story two great characters, who
Seem to be opposites in all that they do.
Just look at them both and think what they are –
Toad finds the idea of being friends quite bizarre

Until they give it a go and then they both find
It’s more about what you do and if you are kind
They have adventures together and in the end
Become the very best you can be – real friends!

A friend can be different in shape, look and size,
Something we all need to realise.
This story is well told with a message so true –
It isn’t what you look like but more what you do.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again,
Doesn’t matter who, where or when,
Children’s illustrated stories, told in rhyme,
Are winners for me, almost every time!

This book is a great story for sharing
One to help encourage even more caring
Don’t judge others on their looks, but by what they do
So you can find a true friend to have adventures with, too.

Head over to buy the book: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Read reviews: Goodreads

About Donald Lloyd Jr.

Originally from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and a professional Landscape Designer by trade, children’s author Donald Lloyd Jr. has spent the last decade watching his children grow and learn life’s lessons. His debut book, The Adventures of Monkey and Toad: Two Remarkable Friends, explores accepting differences and what it is like to make a new friend. Donald currently lives in Maryland with his family.

Connect to Donald Lloyd Jr.

Amazon Author Page: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Facebook – Donald Lloyd  – InstagramDonald Lloyd Author –   Twitter@DonaldLl0yd

Thanks for dropping in today and it would be great if you could share the news about Donald’s new book.. thanks Sally.