Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Christmas Book Fair – #Reviews #Mystery James J. Cudney, #Memoir Brigid P. Gallagher, Children Annika Perry, #Romance Harmony Kent

Since the middle of November I have featured all the authors in the Cafe and Bookstore with a recent review and since we have a few days left, I will now share more up to date reviews that have been posted.

The first book is for book one of The Braxton Campus Mysteries (one of my recommendations for 2019) Academic Curveball by James J. Cudney.

About the book

When Kellan Ayrwick returns home for his father’s retirement, he finds a body in Diamond Hall’s stairwell.

Unfortunately, Kellan has a connection to the victim, and so do several members of his family. Soon after, the college’s athletic program receives mysterious donations, a nasty blog denounces his father, and someone attempts to change students’ grades. Someone is playing games on campus, but none of the facts add up.

With the help of his eccentric nana, Kellan tries to stay out of the sheriff’s way. But who killed Professor Abby Monroe?

One of the recent reviews for the book

Academic Curveball is the second book I’ve read by James J. Cudney and the first of his Braxton Campus cozy mysteries. Having enjoyed his first novel, the standalone family saga Watching Glass Shatter, I was curious to see how he would handle a cozy mystery. I wasn’t disappointed. The characters in Academic Curveball were all well portrayed. I especially liked Kellan, the main character, a widower with a young daughter who was called home for his father’s retirement party as president of Braxton College. Upon his return, Kellan who is currently working for Dark Realities, a television reality crime show, plans to meet Professor Abby Monroe who has material for the second season of his show after his father’s party. Unfortunately, he never gets to do so because Abby’s dead body is found during the party by his father’s assistant Lorraine Candito.

A number of people, some close to Kellan including his own father, are suspects in Abby’s murder, but the murder weapon is missing along with two other items, one that was intended as a gift to Kellan. The motive is believed to have involved the changing of a grade for an athlete so he can compete in a game that a college scout will attend. But when another murder occurs and they find the possible weapon hidden in Kellan’s father’s desk, Kellan has even more reason to solve the case despite the warnings by the town’s female sheriff who refers to him as “Little Arywick.”

Aided by his sassy grandmother, Nana D. and his old school friend Connor who is dating both his sister Eleanor and his college girlfriend Maggie, Kellan sets out to find the person responsible for the murders. Although I had a funny feeling about the character who the killer ended up being, I didn’t know the identity of the murderer until it was unveiled . . . and then it all made sense. What surprised me even more was the cliffhanger at the end of the book that was totally unexpected. I won’t reveal any spoilers, but I love double twists. This one was done exceptionally well. I can’t wait to read the second book where it should be explained. My only criticism of this book was that the plethora of characters were introduced close together which made it somewhat difficult to keep them all straight initially. Otherwise, I highly recommend this series to those who like academic settings, a variety of interesting characters including a male protagonist, and cozy mysteries with lots of subplots and twists.

In addition to being a talented writer, Cudney also has a terrific WordPress blog called This is My Truth Now.

A selection of other books by James J. Cudney

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US

And on Amazon UK: Amazon UK

Read more reviews and follow James: Goodreads

Connect to James via his blogThis is my Truth Now

And the next book to receive a recent review is the memoir by Brigid P. Gallagher that shares her experiences and also strategies to overcome chronic illness in Watching for the Daisies.

About the book

Millions of people around the world suffer from fibromyalgia; the majority of them are women. As yet, there is no cure.

In this memoir, Brigid P. Gallagher shares her experiences on:

  • The busy life she followed before succumbing to this debilitating disease
  • Stopping and soul searching for answers to her vast array of symptoms
  • Entering a new life of SLOW

Drawing on her knowledge and experience as a Natural Medicines therapist, she seeks out therapies to aid her healing and integrates a variety of self help techniques and lifestyle changes. She also unearths a love of solo travel including Egypt, India, Rome, Lourdes, Carcassonne and Bali…

Brigid learns many insights about LIFE on her journey, the most valuable being: “First learn to love thyself.”

In 2006, she began a new career in Organic Horticulture eventually teaching part time in schools. Although she has now retired from teaching, she continues to pursue her lifelong passion for gardening and watching the daisies.

One of the recent reviews for the book

Balroop Singh 4.0 out of 5 stars Exudes positivity December 17, 2019

Watching the Daisies by Brigid P. Gallagher is an autobiography that recounts various experiences of dealing with grief, depression and healing through spirituality, natural medicine and self help techniques like electro-crystal healing and color therapy. She even obtained a diploma in Electro-crystal Healing and color therapy that she acquired at the International Association of Color Therapists. I am amazed at how much a person could learn in one life time despite the misfortunes that she had faced and how much could she absorb in the name of faith in crystals, feathers, feng shui and herbs! The traditional healing methods were put together by her to deal with her mental and physical pain.

Brigid’s story exemplifies how life flows and passes by if we accept its trails and change our direction accordingly. On the way she became stronger and discovered her true self. Her love for music, travel and gardening kept her spirits high. Written in a detached style, without any emotional touches despite the distress that she keeps to herself, she doesn’t pause to dwell on her misery. She conveys many profound lessons in a subtle way – be positive and face life boldly.

Read the rest of the reviews and buy the book: Amazon UK

and at:  Amazon US

Read more reviews and follow Brigid on : Goodreads

Connect to Brigid via her blog: Watching the Daisies

And now the lovely children’s book by Annika Perry.  Perfect for 3 – 6 year olds – Oskar’s Quest.

About the book

Oskar is afraid of adventures. Yet one day he finds himself on a mysterious island which needs his help.Join Oskar on this unexpected and magnificent quest, where he finds not only courage but so much more…“It’s light, extremely enjoyable and very gripping.” Esther Chilton – author & editor.Perfect for ages 3 to 6.

One of the recent reviews for the book

Annika Perry has produced a children’s book that totally captured my heart. I have fallen in love with Oskar, who on his brave pursuit finds courage of heart and acts With bravery that bewilders himself. He is the Star but there are other wonderful and strong charachters there.

And we mustn’t forget about the frightening Drang who in the end totally surprises us all. Any child – or grown up child will fall for him too in the end.

Let us fly with Oskar on his magnificent quest. Annika doesn’t disappoint, there is gold dust on every page as the story develops.

Head over to read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon UK

And: Amazon US

Also by Annika Perry

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon UK

And: Amazon US

Read more reviews and follow Annika: Goodreads

Connect to Annika via her blog: Annika Perry

The reviews are in for award winning author Harmony Kent. for her Christmas release– Oh Baubles: A Christmas Romance Novella.

About Oh Baubles

After a tragic accident one Christmas, Charlene loses her husband and her leg.

Scarred and damaged, the losses leave her lost and reeling, and a long recovery lies ahead of her.

When John, a hot young physiotherapist, comes into her life with his ripped abs and good-god good-looks, she can’t imagine he’d give somebody like her a second glance.

Then she falls for him.

Can Charlene overcome all obstacles to gain back her life and find true love once more?

Find out in this fun-filled, clean Christmas romance novella from award-winning author Harmony Kent.

One of the recent reviews for the book

Mae Clair 5.0 out of 5 stars Sweet and Lovely! December 10, 2019

This is a short, enchanting story sure to warm the heart. Charlene, a young widow, requires physical therapy due to a tragic accident in her past. She feels an immediate connection with John, her PT, but can’t believe he’d spare a second glance for her. Although this is a romantic story, I really enjoyed seeing the progression in Charlene’s character from beginning to end. The author delivered that change—and the build up of romance—in a believable manner. Watching Charlene transform as the book progresses is like watching a beautiful butterfly emerge from a cocoon. With its holiday setting, Oh, Baubles makes a charming novella for the holidays, but it will leave you with a warm feeling any time of year. Lovely!

A selection of other books by Harmony Kent.

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon UK

And on: Amazon US

Read more reviews and follow Harmony: Goodreads

Connect to Harmony via her website: Harmony Kent

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

27 thoughts on “Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Christmas Book Fair – #Reviews #Mystery James J. Cudney, #Memoir Brigid P. Gallagher, Children Annika Perry, #Romance Harmony Kent

  1. Pingback: Smorgasbord Blog Magazine Weekly Round Up – 22nd – 28th December – Christmas Music, Food, Short stories and Recommended Books 2019 | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

  2. Sally, thank you so much for including my book amongst this terrific selection here! 😀🙏I read Harmony’s book just before Christmas and it was great and I look forward to Brigid’s this coming year … I’m playing catch up! I had no idea James had written so many books and must check these out! Hope you’re having a wonderful start to 2020.

    Ps. I saw your post about sharing two of our blog posts from 2019 and would love to take part!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: Sally's Cafe and Bookstore – Christmas Book Fair – #Reviews #Mystery James J. Cudney, #Memoir Brigid P. Gallagher, Children Annika Perry, #Romance Harmony Kent | Welcome to Harmony Kent Online

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