Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – #Reviews – Mary Adler, Julia Benally, Lizzie Chantree and Audrey Driscoll

Welcome to the second of the author updates this week with recent reviews for authors on the shelves.

The first author with a recent review is Mary Adler for her wartime mystery Shadowed by Death An Oliver Wright WW II Mystery Book 2. A young Polish freedom fighter is in danger and Oliver Wright must try to protect her..

About Shadowed by Death

San Francisco, 1944. Sophia Nirenska, a Polish resistance fighter who survived the Warsaw ghetto uprising, finds safety in California until someone tries to kill her. She insists political enemies want to silence her, but homicide detective Oliver Wright, on medical leave from the Marines, believes the motive is more personal. He and his German shepherd, Harley, try to protect Sophia, but she insists on doing things her own way—a dangerous decision.

Oliver guards Sophia as they travel from an Italian cafe in Richmond to communist chicken farmers in Petaluma where her impetuous actions put them both in mortal danger.

When Oliver rescues a girl and her dog who are running for their lives, he discovers the dark secret at the heart of the threat to Sophia, a secret with its roots in Poland. When he does, he is forced to choose between enforcing the law as he knows it and jeopardizing Sophia or accepting a rougher kind of justice.

Shadowed by Death accurately portrays the fears and troubles of the communities of northern California as they bear the burdens of World War II and celebrate the gift of finding family among strangers.

A recent review for the book

Mary Callahan 5.0 out of 5 stars Hard to Put down May 27, 2019

From the start Shadowed By Death grabbed my attention. Having read the first book I was familiar with Oliver Wright. The situation he faces in this book is a bit different from that of the that book. Shadowed by Death deals with a very interesting and barely known part of California history which makes the intrigue more dynamic. Once I got started it was difficult to put the book down. The chapters are short which really kept me moving thinking, “I can read just one more then turn out the light.” But I kept thinking that until the night was half gone and the book finished.

I found that I cared about most of the characters in the story, in particular the females. On the other hand, from first appearance in the story the ‘villain” made me quite uneasy
Really liked the book and am waiting anxiously for number three.

Read the reviews and buy the book:

And on Amazon UK:

Also by Mary Adler

Buy both books from Mary’s author page US:

And Amazon UK:

Read more reviews and follow Mary on Goodreads:

Connect to Mary via her website:

The next author with a recent review is Julia Benally for Pariahs (Ilinga Book I)

About Pariahs (Ilings Book 1)

In a land of monsters and soulless creatures, there is a secluded compound terrorized by a fallen demon-killer, the Grand Apwor. He’s claimed its youngest occupant Vijeren as his son. The Grand Apwor can’t be killed, he can’t be escaped, and his punishments are severe and horrific. Somehow, he knows where Vijeren is at all times. When a law enforcer named Zhin appears like a living flame, a family war that’s been sizzling for decades finally ignites. It drags Vijeren in, revealing secrets of a long-forgotten past and a family torn asunder in recesses of lost memories. Only Zhin knows how to kill the Grand Apwor, but the answer rests on the love between a father and son–something that Vijeren doesn’t have…

One of the recent reviews for the book

Heather Nanni 5.0 out of 5 stars An Epic Adventure! April 28, 2019

Julia Benally has built a magical and mysterious world where danger lurks around every corner, under every stairwell and behind every tree. Your heart will race as you read about Vijeren, the young and brave hero, and his epic journey of self discovery…and self preservation. Impressively vast in scope, creative, fast-paced, heartwarming and fun, PARIAHS will have you sitting on the edge of your seat and biting your nails until the end.

 Read the reviews and buy the book:

And Amazon UK:

Julia is also a contributor to a number of anthologies.

Read the reviews and buy the books:

and on Amazon UK:

Read the reviews and follow Julia on Goodreads:

Connect to Julia via her blog:

The next book to receive recent reviews is If You Love Me I’m Yours by bestselling author of Ninja School Mum, Lizzie Chantree.

About the book

‘If you love me, I’m yours…’

Maud didn’t mind being boring, not really. She had a sensible job, clothes, and love life… if you counted an overbearing ex who had thanked her, rolled over and was snoring before she even realised he’d begun! She could tolerate not fulfilling her dreams, if her parents would pay her one compliment about the only thing she was passionate about in life: her art.

Dot should have fit in with her flamboyant and slightly eccentric family of talented artists, but somehow, she was an anomaly who couldn’t paint. She tried hard to be part of their world by becoming an art agent extraordinaire, but she dreamed of finding her own voice.

Dot’s brother Nate, a smoulderingly sexy and famous artist, was adored by everyone. His creative talent left them in awe of his ability to capture such passion on canvas. Women worshipped him, and even Dot’s friend Maud flushed and bumped into things when he walked into a room, but a tragic event in his past had left him emotionally and physically scarred, and reluctant to face the world again.

Someone was leaving exquisite little paintings on park benches, with a tag saying, ‘If you love me, I’m yours’. The art was so fresh and cutting-edge, that it generated a media frenzy and a scramble to discover where the mystery artist could be hiding. The revelation of who the prodigious artist was interlinked Maud, Dot and Nate’s lives forever, but their worlds came crashing down.

Were bonds of friendship, love and loyalty strong enough to withstand fame, success and scandal?

One of the recent reviews for the book

For me, IF YOU LOVE ME I AM YOURS Is one book you should not leave at home when packing for your holiday. I took it on mine, and wiled away some lovely ‘me’ time engrossed in it as I relaxed in the sun.

This is a romantic comedy with a story that doesn’t just rely on getting the laughs but has a gripping core that keeps you turning the pages.

Yes, there are many times which make you laugh out loud and that aspect adds to the enjoyment of the unravelling of Maud’s life – her hurt at her parent’s attitude to the person she wants to be, and how she strives for their approval.

Her friendships – woven as all friendships are, with deep loyalty, the feeling that someone has got your back, and that wonderful asset of having people who love and who understand you. And yes, troublesome times when halo’s slip and forgiveness is the only way forward. Dot is one of these. To describe her I wouldn’t know where to start, but this except of just one of Lizzie’s wonderfully crafted and funny descriptions gives you an insight into Dot:

‘Dot wanted to stamp her feet then throw herself on the floor in a tantrum, but her shoes had towering heels with fake sharks’ teeth protruding from every angle and she was worried she could do herself some serious damage, so she tried to grab her emotions and squelch them back down again before they erupted in fury.’

And Daisy – Explicit about her sexual activity and bossy in a good way – she it is who sets Maud off on the path her life should take.

And we become entangled in Maud’s love life – no easy, falling in love and blissful journey for Maud. Her innocence is appealing, and yet, a barrier and leads her to trust the wrong people. You so want her to find happiness and to stick up for herself – does she? I highly recommend that you read IF YOU LOVE ME I’M YOURS – the journey to find out, is funny, witty, moving and gives you an entertaining read.

My rating – A brilliant read and well worthy of five stars.

Read the reviews and buy the book:

And read more reviews on Amazon US:

Also by Lizzie Chantree

Read all the reviews and buy the books:

And Amazon US:

And find more reviews and follow Lizzie on Goodreads:

Connect to Lizzie via her website:

And finally a recent review for Audrey Driscoll for Islands of the Gulf Volume 2 The Treasure (The Herbert West Series Book 3) Also the book is 50% off until the end of July on Smashwords.. and I will add the link to the others.

About the Book

Abandoned and abused, young Herbert West resorts to drastic measures to survive. At Miskatonic University, he becomes a scientist who commits crimes and creates monstrosities. Decades later, haunted by his past, he finds safety as Dr. Francis Dexter of Bellefleur Island, but his divided nature threatens those he loves and forces him to face the truth about his healing powers.

More Details: Seeking relief from grief and illness in the refuge of Bellefleur Island, Francis Dexter relives in memory his early years when his name was Herbert West. To survive his mother’s disappearance, the capricious attentions of his father and the brutalities of his brothers, young Herbert makes himself into a juvenile strategist and warrior of vengeance.

Turning to science as a solace for emotional turmoil, Herbert studies medicine at Miskatonic University in Arkham. As both student and physician, he pursues forbidden experiments with single-minded determination, seeking to discover the secrets of life and death. The Great War presents West with a great opportunity, but in that maelstrom of violence he crosses the frontier of rationalism into the territory of the bizarre.

Recoiling from these poisoned memories, Francis Dexter turns to his years on Bellefleur Island and relives his tumultuous relationship with the artist Julian Vernon. For the first time since his troubled childhood, he allows himself to become emotionally attached to another human being, but the idyll is eroded by depression, drugs and jealousy and Dexter’s choices result in tragedy.

Saved and supported by Margaret Bellgarde, Dexter allows himself to be drawn into her family to recover from illness and sorrow. Until a day in July when his past confronts him and forces him to face the truth about his role as physician and healer.

A recent review for the book on Goodreads

Jul 06, 2019 Lorinda Taylor rated it Five Stars

This book’s genre could be described in more than one way. First of all, it is what I would call a literary paranormal work – literary because it is first and foremost a study of superbly delineated characters who could easily exist in the real world, and paranormal because many occurrences are outside the bounds of reality, giving it elements of science fiction/fantasy. But it could also be classified as gay fiction, since the plot centers around the poignant, tempestuous, and ultimately tragic love affair between Francis Dexter/Herbert West and the artist Julian Vernon.

As always with this author’s books, it is beautifully written, with descriptive passages that are a joy to read. Some of the paranormal passages are particularly memorable. I might cite Dexter’s gripping hallucination involving Richard Bellgarde’s death, the episode with the Tarot reading, and also Dexter’s contact with the shaman/medicine woman. And of course, the events at the end, in Chapter 15, which reminded me of Ursula K. LeGuin’s ”A Wizard of Earthsea,” where Ged pursues his evil self across the sea, only to merge that entity into his own being.

Driscoll has a secret talent – she knows how to structure her stories so there is always more to be told. Thus, the end of “The Treasure” takes us back to the end of “The Friendship of Mortals,” and in v.1 of “Islands of the Gulf” we know that the love affair between Francis and Julian took place, but we don’t know the details of it. And if you read the summaries of the sequels, you find out that they also fill in details that were only hinted at in the earlier books. I suspect Driscoll could keep these stories going for a long time to come, and that’s a good thing as far as I’m concerned! Strongly recommended (but read the earlier volumes first)

Read the reviews and buy the book:

And on Amazon UK:

Buy the book 50% off until the end of July on Smashwords:

A selection of other books by Audrey Driscoll

Read the reviews and buy the books:

And Amazon UK:

Read more reviews and follow Audrey on Goodreads:

Connect to Audrey via her website:

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you will be leaving with some books under your arm… thanks Sally

38 thoughts on “Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – #Reviews – Mary Adler, Julia Benally, Lizzie Chantree and Audrey Driscoll

  1. Pingback: Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – #Reviews – Mary Adler, Julia Benally, Lizzie Chantree and Audrey Driscoll. | Lizzie Chantree

  2. Pingback: Smorgasbord Blog Magazine Weekly Round Up – Children’s books, Crooners, Cravings and Cartoons. | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

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