Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – Christy Birmingham, Annika Perry and Jacquie Biggar

Welcome to the first of the updates this week with news of recent reviews from authors on the shelves of the bookstore. If you have a new release, please let me know and I will do an individual promotion once it is available on Amazon.

The first author with a recent review is Christy Birmingham for her collection of poetry Versions of the Self.

About Versions of the Self

Imagine a shift to the way you see the world that arises through poetic narration. Imagine the world, at its base level, is a collection of selves. These selves collide, disperse, intermingle, and share themselves in lines of free verse. Such is the premise of Versions of the Self, poetry that assumes multiple types of selves exist and relate in ways that alter them. Each of the eight chapters looks at a different type of self, including the singular “I” and romantic interactions. These unique 80 poems definitely color themselves outside of the lines.

One of the recent reviews for Versions of the Self

All my life I thought that my emotional reliance on someone was a foregone conclusion, and that my self had to connect with another’s to inject coherence into my life’s abstract manuscript. In several unique ways in Versions of the Self, Christy Birmingham informs that the self can last ‘brutally independent’ longer without such reliance or even when it’s relying on someone. In “Gliding Under Water,” she writes, “I am gliding under the waters and my vision is remarkably clear while my body washes with liquids that contain no mixture of you.”

Christy has succinctly touched on several emotions; that we don’t pause and ponder enough to rationalize. We sense myriad versions of several people, and the only way we could connect with their selves is if it’s a soul-led journey from us, without a destination in mind, in which case, no car had driven my expectations to them. Shake hands, therefore, seeking nothing but simplicity.

“And now it seems he takes the last space in my life, outside of my heart’s walls, and miles from my reality” – she says in “The Capital.” How fierce this self-representation is, so unyielding, that it draws its strength from the innate soul-gem.

Since I’m close to my mother – everyone is and must be – these lines from “As We Walk Together” aimed for my heartstrings: “I feel you take my hand as we walk forward, together, and we inhale the scents that disclose a recent rainfall has occurred.” It reminded me of my childhood and those precious moments I so wish to return to, over and again. But, this heartwarming book wants me to return to my self, even away from the self that gave me birth because my self is the primary cure for all my worries, like the primary network that doesn’t charge out of pocket. My soul is my self and, therefore, always covered.

This is a must-have book for anyone who wants to go beyond the mundane ‘identify yourself’ literature. Sans going beyond, we are nothing but a body without life.

Read the reviews and buy the book:

And Amazon UK:

Read more reviews and follow Christy on Goodreads:

Also by Christy Birmingham.

Pathways to Illumination is available exclusively at Redmund Productions (less)

Connect to Christy via her website:

The next author with news about her book is Annika Perry and The Storyteller Speaks, her debut collection of short stories.

About The Story Teller Speaks

It only takes one event to change a life. What is that action, decision, occurrence? Whose life is affected? Changed forever?

In this eclectic mix of 21 short stories, flash fiction and poetry the pendulum swings between first love and murder, from soul-destroying grief to reconciliation. The tales veer from the sweet satisfaction of revenge to new beginnings, from heart-breaking miscarriages of justice to heart-warming Christmas misadventure.

One common thread binds them all; the belief that there is no such thing as an ordinary life; they’re all extraordinary.

Open your hearts and minds as The Storyteller Speaks.

One of the recent reviews for the collection

Writers may exaggerate the negative and write dystopian fiction. They may exaggerate the positive and write utopian fiction. In this fascinating collection of short stories, the positive being brought into greater relief is our ability to choose integrity and kindness rather than degenerative and uncaring mindsets and actions. Each story is a core sample of a human moral issue, a history of resiliency and loss, exposed to the light.

In most of the stories the characters are challenged by a tragic or potentially damaging event outside their control; in a moment, their lives are changed drastically, forever. Some of the characters have caused their own dilemma. They go on in a fog or struggle with painful memories and swings of emotion before they reach the tipping point: how will they respond? And it is to their credit they reach this tipping point, because it is done through conscious moral effort. But whether tragedy has come to them or they have made their own mistakes, they eventually recognize the situation through a severe exercise in honesty. This honesty springs from valuing the best sense of who they can be and become. They often draw on enriching relationships with other people and humanizing traditions. Then they go beyond: they make amends. By taking this action, they rise to a new level of moral and ethical consciousness. This is portrayed in clear-eyed fashion, showing how difficult it is to do, and yet liberating.

It is more than interesting for stories like these to be told; it may be necessary for our adaptability and survival, for our thriving as a species. The same could be said for the negative. In fact, these stories blend both in a new and perceptive way.

The flaws in her writing and story composition are small quibbles. For instance, just when I thought the stories would all be similar samples, there was a radical change. It is my hope Annika Perry will continue to hone her craft as a writer. She may yet give us an iconic work.

Read the reviews and buy the book:

and Amazon US:

Read other reviews and follow Annika on Goodreads:

Connect to Annika via her blog:

The final author today is Jacquie Biggar with a recent review for Maggie’s Revenge: Wounded Hearts Book 6.

About Maggie’s Revenge

DEA Special Agent Maggie Holt is fierce, smart, beautiful– and in over her head.

Maggie has been working undercover 15 months when she is taken by Chinese-Mexican cartel leader, Chenglei. She tries to escape with 8 other women and is captured and brutally punished.

Adam O’Connor is angry and frustrated. It’s his fault his partner, and one-time lover, is missing and no matter how many leads he chases, they don’t bring Maggie home.

An unexpected break in the case sends Adam south to Texas. His old SEAL Team Chief, Frank Stein, offers his home and his help in the search effort.

Will these two strong men find Maggie? And will their decades old friendship be destroyed by their love for the same woman?

One of the recent reviews for the book

Maggie’s Revenge is an electrifying, mystery/suspense where an undercover DEA agent named Maggie Holt is taken by a Chinese-Mexican cartel who deals in human trafficking, among other things. She repeatedly tries to escape without any luck and the punishments are ruthless. The cartel leader uses everything in his arsenal to break her spirit, but she refuses to submit. In her eyes, all that matters is freeing the other captured women. Time is running out as the cartel is about to sell Maggie and the others to the highest bidder. It’s now or never for Maggie and the other women. They must swallow their fears and escape then wait for help. Will Maggie succeed, or will she die fighting for her life and the lives of the other women?

I’ve read every book in the Wounded Hearts series and have loved each book. This one, however, chilled me to the bone. Jacquie Biggar takes the reader deep into the world of human trafficking. She doesn’t hold anything back and as a woman, I can’t imagine anything worse than being taken and sold to the highest bidder. My whole body trembled as I became one with Maggie.

Plenty of action and realistic conflict makes Maggie’s Revenge a thrill a minute adventure. It reads like an action film which was fun. While this is the sixth book in the Wounded Hearts series, it’s a standalone. After you finish this one, go back and read the other books in the series. Trust me, you’ll love them all.

If you’re looking for a strong heroine in an untenable situation where lives are traded like currency, pick up this book today! Highly recommend!

Disclaimer: I received a copy from the author in the hopes I’d review it.

Favorite Character/Quote: Maggie. Never have a read such a strong-willed heroine thrust in a dangerous, fearful predicament where all she thinks about is saving others. An incredibly inspiring woman and a joy to read.

Read the reviews and buy the book:

And Amazon UK:

A selection of of other books by Jacquie Biggar

Read all the reviews and buy the books:

And at Amazon UK:

Read more reviews and follow Jacquie Biggar on Goodreads:

Connect to Jacquie via her website:

Thank you very much for dropping in today and I am sure there will be a book or two to tempt you.. thanks Sally


40 thoughts on “Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – Christy Birmingham, Annika Perry and Jacquie Biggar

  1. Sally, first of all, thank you so much for featuring the latest review of my book.

    It’s always a joy to receive reviews and this one particularly touched me with its in-depth insight. Reviews are a lifeline for indie authors and it’s heartwarming that many take the time and considerable effort to first read the books and then review.

    Mahesh’s review of Christy’s book is astonishing, eloquent, deeply moving and philosphical – her last sentences are strking ​and a reminder to us all: ‘This is a must-have book for anyone who wants to go beyond the mundane ‘identify yourself’ literature. Sans going beyond, we are nothing but a body without life.’ I have ‘Versions of the Self’ on my Kindle and this is a timely reminder to head over and read it soon.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Thanks for sharing my review, Sally. This book took almost a year to write. Maggie was in a very dark place at the end of the last book she played a major role in, The Rebel’s Redemption. I had a difficult time going back there, but knew she deserved to win against those who hurt her.
    Congrats to Annika and Christy, your books sound wonderful!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Pingback: Sally’s Author Update – It’s a Pleasure to be Here! | When Women Inspire

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