Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore Christmas Update – Angie Dokos, Alyssa Drake and Nicholas C. Rossis


Welcome to the latest update from Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore. Throughout the year over 120 authors have been promoted weekly on the blog and their books now reside in the virtual bookstore along with their buy links and websites. In the run up to Christmas I will be visiting all the authors in the store and checking for updates and new reviews on their most recent books. If you are in the bookstore and have recently published a new book, received a rave review then please let me know..

My first book was promoted  in the Autumn Reading series and here is one of the latest reviews for Mackenzie’s Distraction by Angie Dokos.


About the book

Mackenzie’s Distraction is a New Adult Romance about a young lady with a rough past and a promising future. Just when her career is within reach, tragedy strikes. A terrible accident and a family secret turn Mackenzie’s world upside down. She’s sure her life can’t become any more complicated, then she meets Trevor. Will he be just what she needs or the distraction that pushes her over the edge?

The latest review for the book.

Family . . . . Death . . . Tragedy . . . . Secrets . . . . Challenges . . . . Survival . . . . Growth . . . . Love . . . . Romance . . . . Marriage . . . . Happiness

According to the author, this is the art of a fictional story. But while reading those pages, it felt as though I was walking alongside a journey of true-to-life characters. That is how crafted this author’s writing style was. And what an amazing skill, as a first-time author!
I won’t go into details of this story and what it’s all about since others have ALREADY done so. But I will say . . .

Truly, I was highly impressed with how this author initially drew out the colorization of characters and scenes. In my life, I’ve read a many fictional tales which weaken the style of creativity and development. And when that does happen, one’s story becomes less moving and limits its connection to characterization and scenery. But that was not the case, here, for the works of “Mackenzie’s Distraction.”

Yes indeed, quite a bit was happening in the life of Mackenzie. So, one could readily see how easy it was to become distracted. This title was definitely a great fit for the story. And the cover design . . . well, it made an even better mix. And as an author, (knowingly) those two elements go hand-in-hand in pumping out a great product. There was no doubt this author knew the literary formula for what it took . . . in giving readers a measurable creation.

I must confess, though, there were some areas where the storytelling tended to shift to those “tell me” moments, rather than continuing with “show me” ones. It is those types of moments (the show me ones) that beautifies the characters’ emotions and polishes the scenery (and places its readers in the moment). But then again, this was classified as a fictional tale and not a non-fictional one. Seemingly, its weight didn’t take from the overall structured development. Now, should this author create for us (readers) a non-fictional tale, I’d hope those show me moments jump off the page and stand out at ya.

This book is at less worthy of no less than a 4 ½ star rating, but no indications for such a rating. In that case, I plugged in a “five-star” rating simply for the deep thought processes, those points at the “show me moments” (that I read), points of colorization of its characters/scenes, and its overall development of such a storyline. And notwithstanding the fact, it kept my interest. Truly, with the depth of pages, it had to take (the writer/author) a great deal of thinking to lay it out, plot it out, and bring it out to closure.

Really, I suggest readers make their own judgment . . . not just ‘cause I found it an interesting read. Having such a product under her wings, I’m looking forward to the author’s next work of art. Kudos, to you (Angie) for this creation!

Read the reviews and BUY the book:
Paperback :


Connect to Angie through her blog:


The next book in the update is an historical romance set in the Victorian era and released in May this year.  A Perfect Plan (Book 1) by Alyssa Drake is enjoying terrific reviews.

51njcouprl-_uy250_About the book

Samantha Hastings lived a quiet, peaceful life on her family’s country estate. With no man to order her around and no stifling society rules to follow, she considered herself blessed. However, when her brother’s ship sinks during a short trip to France, Samantha receives a request from her sister-in-law to return to town and manage the late Earl’s finances. Suddenly thrust into society, Samantha faces an unfamiliar world and a pair of very familiar green eyes.

Lord Benjamin Westwood never intended on following through with his rash promise to his best friend. Now, with Edward’s death, Benjamin becomes the unwilling guardian to Edward’s bratty little sister, who has grown up considerably since the last time they met. His intention to marry her off to the first available suitor is thwarted when he finds himself falling for Samantha’s unique demeanor. He lights upon the perfect plan; a marriage of convenience, giving him the opportunity to romance Samantha without distraction.

However, when they discover Edward’s disappearance was due to foul play, Benjamin’s perfect plan begins to quickly unravel. Now, Samantha is in more danger than either of them realized and Benjamin is running out of time.

One of the latest reviews for the book

Amazing debut! By louvejita on November 20, 2016

Samantha Hastings is not your typical debutante. Orphaned at a young age, growing up in the country isolated from society and the unladylike teachings of her older brother, have made her into a fierce, independent and totally inappropriate young woman, who’d rather walk barefoot in the park than having tea and trumpets in a countess’ sitting room.

After her brother’s sudden passing, she’s required by her sister-in-law to come to town and help tend to the accounts and she then finds herself being dragged to society functions in Lady Hastings’ hope of finding a proper suitor to get her married.

Lord Benjamin Westwood was charged with the delicate task of acting guardian for Samantha in the absence of her brother, but when he finally catches a glimpse of grown up “little Sam”, he realizes the task at hand is going to be more difficult than expected when his attraction to her proves an obstacle to marrying her off.

When a book starts with a murder, at least for me, it’s bound to be good. If you add to that a smart mouth heroine and a no nonsense rakish hero, it’s right up my alley and this book had it all!

I thoroughly enjoyed this story from beginning to end. It’s fun, fast paced, well written, the characters are nicely developed and properly related and the mystery surrounding the Hastings family makes for a great read. I also liked the secondary characters and the buildup the author created for the following stories in the series.

There are some minor things to be worked on, but this is a great start for a debut author.

Read all the reviews and BUY the book:


Connect to Alyssa through her website:


The final book in today’s update is the brand new release from Nicholas C. Rossis. Pearseus: End Game (book 4 of the Pearseus epic fantasy series) was released on December 1st.


Cyrus will risk everything to gain back his throne. But new enemies are waiting for him; enemies that will stop at nothing to destroy humanity once and for all. With the Capital invading Anthea and the north in turmoil, every step of the journey is fraught with peril. In a world falling apart, can Cyrus and his friends prevent humanity’s extinction?

“A creative and unforgettable series that will one day become a gem among sci-fi fantasy books.”  ~ Janice Spina

About the Series

Loosely based on the 5th BC Persian Wars, Pearseus mixes science fiction with epic fantasy and paranormal elements. From a grieving father who faces his darkest choice between revenge and honoring his vows, to a terrified boy struggling to find his way home, our heroes must overcome politics, murder, and betrayal as they become ever more embroiled in a war against an ancient enemy. A war that threatens to destroy the whole of humanity.

Other books in the Pearseus Series and the Prequel Schism

51lgjotvs3l-_uy250_51uesghpqul-_uy250_51opxj9hubl-_uy250_61xi95ogtul-_uy250_The series has received outstanding reviews and here is a small selection.

It’s New Year’s Eve, the year of 2099, but the distinguished guests aboard the Pearseus won’t get to countdown seconds; soon they’ll be counting bodies and survivors after the spaceship’s crash landing on another planet. The good news? The planet is seemingly hospitable both in resources and in terms of the natives’ attitude towards earthlings. The bad news? They might have come on this planet bare of possessions, but what they haven’t been able to shed are the shortcomings of their human nature. Will that be the sole threat to a unified future, or is the new land and its first inhabitants not as innocent as they look?

This is a fantastic (literally and figuratively) prequel that lays the groundwork for what looks like an exciting sci-fi/fantasy series. If my instinct is right (and the other excellent reviews confirm it) apart from an adventure, Nicholas C. Rossis will weave a story where philosophical and historical issues will be raised, raising the bar for both the reader and the genre as a whole. I’m really glad I bought and read this thoroughly enjoyable book because now I already know my next read: Pearseus, the Rise of the Prince, the first full-length novel of the series.

Pearseus: Rise of the Prince by Nicholas Rossis is the second book of a unique and well-written Epic Fantasy series, with elements of Sci-Fi and Mythology, and just a touch of Horror thrown in the mix.

The plot of the book is both well-paced and completely absorbing, with many exciting twists and turns along the way.
I enjoyed the characters, good and evil alike, who were realistic and believeable. I found the character, Styx, to be particularly genuine and intriguing. In spite of her ruthless and evil ruler ship, she truly believes that her methods are not only necessary, but for the greater good, and therefore, completely justified.

I very much enjoyed Pearseus: Rise of the Prince, and do recommend it to all who love an exceptional Epic Fantasy tale.

The Epic Continues By Catherine Mackay on February 27, 2015

I received a copy of Vigil from the author because of the review which I gave the Pearseus bundle. This is an awesome continuation of the series – the action just doesn’t stop. The author carries the different threads of the story seamlessly – Rossis skips from character to character as he progresses each character’s story and the overall plot-lines.

In this book you have a sense of the world slowly, but surely falling into the abyss as Teo turns his attention on Anthea while others are content to wait and watch before deciding to support Anthea or the Capital. Meanwhile we learn more about Pratin and what motivates him even while he hides in the background supporting Teo’s desire for power, but of course not for reasons that Teo might think. Manipulation, power and greed are the name of the game through each of the Pearseus series – the Iota, Orbs, Whispers, First, and Newcomers all have their own agenda.

Will any of the races on Pearseus find unity together? Or will the whole of Pearseus turn to madness . What I love about this book are the well developed characters – even the bad guys – as well as the strong, developed plot lines, the Pearseus universe is a fusion of Greek and Eastern influences – all of which makes for a very unique, exciting and epic story. Totally looking forward to the next book. Highly recommend this book and the other Pearseus books which I rate highly along with such books as Dune and Game of Thrones, and Lord of the Rings and Saga of the Seven Suns.

Read all the reviews and BUY the books:

A small selection of other books by Nicholas C. Rossis.

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Connect to Nicholas via his website:


Thank you for dropping in today and I hope it has given you some ideas for gifts for the book lovers in your life.. including yourselves.  Please spread the news.. thanks Sally

19 thoughts on “Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore Christmas Update – Angie Dokos, Alyssa Drake and Nicholas C. Rossis

  1. Pingback: Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore Christmas Update – Angie Dokos, Alyssa Drake and Nicholas C. Rossis | Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life

  2. Pingback: Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore Christmas Update – Angie Dokos, Alyssa Drake and Nicholas C. Rossis – Angie Dokos

  3. Pingback: Smorgasbord Weekly Round Up. Baring it all, blog milestone and Christmas Party | Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life

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