Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – Marcia Meara and Shehanne Moore


Welcome to the first of the cafe updates of the week and the first author to showcase is Marcia Meara with the third book in her Riverbend series, That Darkest Place.

About the book

In Book 3 of her popular Riverbend series, Marcia Meara, author of Wake-Robin Ridge, A Boy Named Rabbit,and Harbinger, takes another look at the lives of the Painter brothers—Jackson, Forrest, and Hunter. While Hunter is home again and on the mend, the same isn’t true for his oldest brother. Jackson’s battle has just begun.

“There are dark places in every heart, in every head. Some you turn away from. Some you light a candle within. But there is one place so black, it consumes all light. It will pull you in and swallow you whole. You don’t leave your brother stranded in that darkest place.”
~Hunter Painter~

The new year is a chance for new beginnings—usually hopeful, positive ones. But when Jackson Painter plows his car into a tree shortly after midnight on January 1, his new beginnings are tragic. His brothers, Forrest and Hunter, take up a grim bedside vigil at the hospital, waiting for Jackson to regain consciousness and anxious over how he’ll take the news that he’s lost a leg and his fiancée is dead. After all, the accident was all his fault.

As the shocking truth emerges, one thing becomes obvious—Jackson will need unconditional love and support from both of his brothers if he is to survive.

Just as he begins the long road to recovery, danger, in the form of a sinister, unsigned note, plunges him back into bleak despair. Scrawled in blood red letters, the accusation—and the threat—is clear. “MURDERER!”

Will the long, harrowing ordeal that lies ahead draw the Painter brothers closer together, or drive them apart forever?

Suspenseful and often heartbreaking, this small-town tale is a testimonial to the redemptive power of love and paints a story filled with humor, romance, and fierce family loyalty.

An early review

That Darkest Place, a mystery that looks at a family dealing with a variety of real-life problems – with angst, humor and love.on May 14, 2017

Having been one of Marcia’s beta writers on her last novel, I was unavailable for this one, but I so looked forward to her next Riverbend novel that, as soon as she posted her completed novel – I immediately ordered it, sat down and completed it in three evenings of reading. The characters’ lives picked up from where her last novel ended, and I was immediately drawn into the waiting game played by so many as they await the outcome of and recovery of a family member from a serious medical trauma. Add to that the tight relationship between brothers who, in spite of totally different personalities and perspectives on life, none-the-less stick together and support one another as they deal with their own unique troubles.

Hunter, Forrest and Jackson Painter, like all of us, struggle with getting it right in dealing with life, friends, and loved ones. Throw in a vindictive mystery letter writer and you have another great Riverbend story. I thoroughly enjoyed her book and look forward to her upcoming novella, as well as her next full novel. Way to go Marcia – you give us other old timers (Marcia and I are the same age!) a boost in confidence and incentive to follow our dreams no matter what.

Buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B072LCVP6M

Also by Marcia Meara

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

Follow Marcia Meara on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7242441.Marcia_Meara

Connect to Marcia via her website: http://marciamearawrites.com/

Our next author update is for Shehanne Moore who has a brand new release, Splendor (London Jewel Thieves Book 2) which hit the shelves on the 18th of May.

About the book

The only thing he hates more than losing at chess is marriage…

For Splendor, former servant to London’s premiere jewel thieves, pretending to be someone else is all in a day’s work. So when she learns of a chess tournament—a men’s chess tournament—with a ten thousand pound prize, pretending to be a man is the obvious move. The money will be enough to set her fiancé up in his own business so they can finally marry, and more importantly, it’ll pay off her bills and keep her out of debtor’s prison. But she doesn’t plan on her opponent, the rakish Kendall Winterborne, Earl Stillmore, being a sore loser—and a drunken one, at that. But before she can collect her prize, she finds herself facing the most merciless man in London across a pair of dueling pistols at dawn. Chess may be Splendor’s game, but she’s never fired a pistol before. And dressed as a man with ill-fitting shoes on the slippery grass and borrowed glasses that make it hard to see, she’s certain she’s finally tipped her own king.

Bitter divorcee Kendall Winterborne, Earl Stillmore, is the ton’s most ruthless heartbreaker. And he’s got three pet peeves: kitchen maids, marriage…and losing. So when he realizes the “man” opposite him has entered the chess tournament under false pretenses, he’s in the perfect position to extort the little chit. But that’s before the exasperating woman begins to slip beneath his skin, and soon all he can think about is slipping beneath her skirts. But the confounded woman is engaged to someone else, and worse—she’s nothing but a former kitchen maid, just like the one that lured his father into the marriage that ruined the family name. And his ex-wife taught him more than he cared to know about why marriage was the worst kind of checkmate of all…

Buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Splendor-London-Jewel-Thieves-Book-ebook/dp/B071S9W9WN

Also by Shehanne Moore.

One of the latest reviews for The Writer and The Rake

Give me an historical romance with pale, delicate heroines and alpha heroes flexing their six packs and I’ll hand it back to you. Unread. But give me a historical time travel romance by Shehanne Moore and I’ll grab it with both hands, dive in there and have a whale of a time. I certainly did with The Writer and the Rake, as I have with all the author’s previous books. 100% entertainment, with the ‘bad girl’ unwitting time traveller, Brittany Carter and the Georgian rake – Mitchell Killgower – sparring off each other… when he’s not stealing her cigarettes.

Add Francis Dashwood and his notorious Hellfire Club, a son Mitchell cannot stand, plus a distinctly dodgy ex-husband, and this novel takes the reader on an often hilarious journey with a heroine your mother would not want you to be friends with but with whom you’d be guaranteed a rollercoaster time. This is the second in series but reads as a standalone. Loved it and looking forward to her next book.

Discover all the books, read the reviews and buy: https://www.amazon.com/Shehanne-Moore/e/B00CMBK7BW

Read more reviews and follow Shehanne on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7029905.Shehanne_Moore

Connect to Shehanne via her blog: https://shehannemoore.wordpress.com/

Thanks for popping in today and please help spread the news of these two new books by fantastic authors. Thanks Sally

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – Deanie Humphrys-Dunne and Lesley Fletcher


Welcome to the Friday edition of the author update for writers in the bookstore. And the first author with an update is Deanie Humphrys-Dunne with her latest book – My Life at Sweetbriar: A Life Changed by Horses, an inspiring memoir that shares the story of how she overcame her disability with the help of her equine family. The book is already receiving wonderful reviews.

About the book

What if you grew up on a horse farm and your single passion was to become a champion horseback rider? The problem is, you were born with a disability. Doctors tell your parents you’ll never walk, let alone ride. What will happen next? What does her dad do that changes her life? Will a failed racehorse and a handicapped girl become a winning team? This is the author’s true story of her journey. Even if Deanie prevails, will she find exactly the right horse to help her win?

Two of the early reviews for the book

Very encouraging! By Deborah S. Hockenberry on May 13, 2017

Can you imagine living on a farm with horses but not being able to ride them? What would it be like to sit there, looking out the window, watching your sisters’ ride, and jumped over fences on them? I think it would be horrible! What if you were disabled and one day your doctor says that you’ll never walk? What would your parents say or do?

This all happened to author, Deanie Humphrys-Dunne. She takes us into her world of learning to ride a horse while having a disability. Not only that, but she tells us how she went on to showing the horses and jump them in horse shows! She has the ribbons to show for it, too!It all started when that doctor said Deanie would never walk. Her dad had other ideas contrary to what the doctor said.

Thus, started Deanie’s long journey to the horse shows. It all started with her dad finding her a pony that she could handle and then strengthening her legs so that she could stay up. Then, she learned to walk the horse without falling off; everything up to jumping when she was eighteen. Through the years she’s ridden many horses as she grew and progressed. In this autobiography, the author takes us through all of the up and downs of her life. She tells us of the horses’ barn burning and her mother losing her favorite horse to Deanie finally getting a horse of her own!I was very impressed with this inspirational book and the courageous author who wrote it! I feel it should definitely be in your home library. It will teach your children that they can overcome whatever obstacles life throws in their direction.

An inspirational story of a little girl’s determination to succeed! By Jjspina on May 13, 2017

If you are looking for an inspirational and unforgettable read this is the book for you. This book will bring you to tears as you read about this inspiring little girl who learns never to say no to her dreams. She was born with a handicap and her parents were told that she would never walk. With a surprisingly strong will and determination to do what her sisters could do, ride horses and win championships, Deanie learned to ride. She found it very difficult and had to adjust many times to falling off her horse and getting up again and again. She never gave up and finally she did succeed and became a championship jumper.

This is quite a feat for this little girl and through her trials and tribulations she teaches children and adults that perseverance pays off. If you want to live your dream then you must work hard even if you at first fail you must keep trying and never give up. By not giving up you will be rewarded with success and a wonderful feeling of accomplishment. Deanie is a remarkable woman who has inspired me by her example. She is a talented and creative author of four books and continues to pursue her dreams in being a very successful author. I think she is well on her way to success for nothing will keep her from obtaining her goal.

This is an excellent story for middle school and high school students to encourage them to pursue their dreams and proving by Deanie’s example, that no obstacle is too great.

Read all the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/My-Life-Sweetbrier-Changed-Horses-ebook/dp/B0711P67DM

Also by Deanie Humphrys-Dunne

Read all the reviews and buy the books:  https://www.amazon.com/Deanie-Humphrys-Dunne/e/B003FFS15S

Read more reviews at Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3309880.Deanie_Humphrys_Dunne

Connect to Deanie via her blog: http://dhdunne.blogspot.ie/

My second update is for Lesley Fletcher who has a brand new cover for her book Crystal Ball Persuasion and a good opportunity to update with some of the reviews for the book.

About the book

Since being given her mentor’s gift of a premonition at a very young age, Gypsy has had her sights on a life far away from the one she leads. Standing in her way are two men; one who has been waiting a lifetime for her love and one who depends on her gifts for a living wage.

Trusting the Universe, she throws herself into a new life when she finds the seeker who fits the premonition. She sets out with a new identity and a zest for adventure on her quest for the truth. Their journey together leads to questions about what the future will hold and how the past will impact it. There is only one thing is set in stone. Neither will ever return to their former life.

Accompanying her on the adventurous escape and leading the way is Jules, a woman whose life was recently thrown into merciless turmoil. Together they conquer goals, soul search and open their bruised and broken hearts as they travel to far off destinations. Their journey is filled with mystical charm, sisterhood and page-turning events as the story unfolds.

Along the way a question arises – Will building a fresh life based on crystal ball readings, intuition and a premonition, also change destiny?

Two of the reviews for the book

This is a great story that examines how lives intertwine. The first time Gypsy and Jules meet, Gypsy is doing a reading for the woman. From there the author takes the reader into a fascinating story and on an incredible journey. The story is well written and the tale is unique as a search for truth and reaching goals by two women who although it seems have nothing in common at first have a date with destiny.

I received this book as the result of a giveaway. I enjoyed the style of writing straight away, it flows well and gets on with the story from the start. I also took a liking to the main characters, so quickly became interested in what happened to them. I know little about the Gypsy life and a little about the places Gypsy and Jules travelled to, but there was enough information to bring the places to life without it being obvious. I read this on my commute to work and there were occasions when I wished my journey was longer so I could continue reading. A thoroughly enjoyable book following the development of a friendship between two women from very different backgrounds.

Read the rest of the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Crystal-Ball-Persuasion-Changing-Destiny-ebook/dp/B01LY7X7GE

Also by Lesley Fletcher

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Lesley-Fletcher/e/B003LSC1OG

Read more about Lesley and her books on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3068528.Lesley_Fletcher

Connect to Lesley via her website: http://lesleyfletcher.com/

Thanks for dropping in today and if you have news to share about your books in the cafe then please let me know. sally.cronin@moyhill.com

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – Dan Alatorre and Angie Dokos


Welcome to the first of the updates this week. If you would like to become part of the Cafe and Bookstore and enjoy regular updates for your books, such as new releases, recent reviews or offers then please check out this directory.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore/

The first author update is for Dan Alattore and his new release at the end of April,  Poggibonsi – An Italian Misadventure.

About the book

When family man Mike Torino lands a project in Italy, home of naked art, Valentino, and taxi-crashing yoga pants, he brings along his wife, hoping to rekindle their marriage. But romance gets derailed by head colds, constant bickering, and assaults from ankle-breaking cobblestone streets. Their daughter develops a gelato addiction. Mike’s Italian partner has a coronary. And as for amore . . . Mattie tells Mike to handle things himself—and storms back to America.

Mike is trapped. Leaving Italy will blow a promotion; staying might cost him his wife and family.

While reeling from Mattie’s frantic departure, a replacement liaison is assigned—a top-notch, beautiful young Italian woman who is instantly smitten with Mike and determined to reveal the passions of her homeland—whether he wants to see them or not! Normally immune, Mike is tempted—but is headstrong, voluptuous Julietta worth the risk?

The book has already received rave reviews

Author and humorist Dan Alatorre became a first-time dad at the age of 47 – a daughter by the name of Savvy. His comedic debut book “Savvy Stories” tells humorous tales about a loving dad who sees the magic in children, and isn’t a bumbling stooge about changing diapers like some TV sitcom. Dan was born in Ohio, and graduated from the University of South Florida in Tampa, Florida before earning an MBA from Tampa College and served with honors in two Fortune 500 companies. Dan, Michele and Savvy live in the Tampa area.

Beware! There is a problem with reading Dan Alatorre’s books – they are addicting. Few writers today have that keen gift for finding the humor in challenging situations and Dan has a secure place at the top of the heap for comedic writing. He knows how people think, and better yet he knows how to appreciate their joyful outlook …and wisdom. But alert! – Dan has other aspects to his writing talent, from the very tender book of insights and of course humor about a cardiac condition, the long QT syndrome in THE LONG CUTIE, to THE TERRIBLE TWOS (lessons learned from his daughter) to children’s books and marketing books, to cookbooks, first in conjunction with others (35 MORE AMAZING RECIPES YOUR MOTHER WOULD BE PROUD OF, etc) and then his solo cookbook ALL AMERICAN FAVORITES. The binding element is his easy going lighthearted manner of writing while at the same time offering fine advice and some really delicious adventures in the kitchen.

But beware! Yet another genre Dan is exploring is present in this romance travel adventure that bears that indelible stamp of Alatorre ingenuity. He maintains his inimitable humor and everything is wrapped in this gifted writer’s accomplished prose.

The synopsis offered suffices to summarize the tale: ‘’When family man Mike Torino lands a project in Italy, home of naked art, Valentino, and taxi-crashing yoga pants, he brings along his wife, hoping to rekindle their marriage. But romance gets derailed by head colds, constant bickering, and assaults from ankle-breaking cobblestone streets. Their daughter develops a gelato addiction. Mike’s Italian partner has a coronary. And as for amore . . . Mattie tells Mike to handle things himself—and storms back to America. Mike is trapped. Leaving Italy will blow a promotion; staying might cost him his wife and family. While reeling from Mattie’s frantic departure, a replacement liaison is assigned—a top-notch, beautiful young Italian woman who is instantly smitten with Mike and determined to reveal the passions of her homeland—whether he wants to see them or not! Normally immune, Mike is tempted—but is headstrong, voluptuous Julietta worth the risk?’

Unexpected other aspects of a talented craftsman surface here – and they are solid enough to push Dan into even more serious novels. Grady Harp, April 17

Read all the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Poggibonsi-Italian-Misadventure-Dan-Alatorre-ebook/dp/B06Y5TT1BT

Also recently released on May 2nd with Dan as a contributing author.

A small selection of books by Dan Alatorre – Some of Dan’s books have also been translated into Italian, Chinese and Spanish

Discover all about Dan, his books and read the reviews: https://www.amazon.com/Dan-Alatorre/e/B00EUX7HEU

Connect to Dan via his blog: www.DanAlatorre.com

My next update is for Angie Dokos who is celebrating the release of her latest book a contemporary romance – Roadside

About the book

Zayne finds Serena’s lifeless body off the side of the road one morning. She has been beaten and left for dead. As she recovers, they become the best of friends. It doesn’t take long for Zayne’s feelings to grow stronger. Will the fear of ruining their friendship keep them from taking a chance on love?

Buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/ROADSIDE-Angie-Dokos-ebook/dp/B0722T3Y58

Also by Angie Dokos

A recent review

on February 10, 2017

A tragic family accident suddenly turns Mackenzie’s world upside down. But then a long-held family secret is exposed, ripping open old wounds with heart wrenching results. Fighting her own demons from an uncertain past, Mackenzie, with the help of her family, desperately fights to turn a negative past into a positive future. But that emotional roller coaster has its own challenges, ending up with her pushing away and hurting some people that love her and want to help her, especially Trevor, an unexpected love interest she wasn’t prepared to deal with.

Emotions run deep as a family struggling to deal, not only with a tragic accident, but must handle a highly charged secret that threatens the very fabric of their family. Will old wounds heal? Can Mackenzie let her past dictate her future, or can she come to terms with the past and accept it? This story conveys a positive message regarding the importance of family, accepting the past, healing, turning your life around, and looking forward to a future Mackenzie dared not to hope for: a promising future with those she loves.

Breaking News.

Mackenzie’s distraction is one of ten novels that will be released on May 24th as a boxed set written by these authors.  E.G. FOX, Elaine Raco Chase, Donna Fasano, Ashley Fontainne, Dee Dee Covas, Angie Dokos, Diane Nelson, Lorne Oliver, Michael Cody, Ashley Goss

The box set will be at the amazing price of 99c: https://www.amazon.com/Cocktails-Ten-E-G-Fox-ebook/dp/B07223MYW5

Read more about Angie, her books and reviews: https://www.amazon.com/Angie-Dokos/e/B01BLPOZEY

Connect to Angie via her blog: https://angiedokos.wordpress.com/

Thank you for dropping by today and please help spread the news of these terrific writers. Thanks Sally

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – Toni Pike, Charles E. Yallowitz and Sally Cronin


Welcome to the Friday edition of the Cafe and Bookstore author update and two authors today have new releases.

First is Toni Pike with a travel guide for those of us who are keen to head out on adventures to experience new cultures.  Happy Travels 101: Cruise, flight and sightseeing tips to enhance your journey.

About the book

BECOME A TRAVEL EXPERT BEFORE YOU LEAVE HOME.
Discover my travel booking tips, my suggestions for exploring any destination, my tips for escorted tours, and my travel packing guide. Find out how to select and make the most of your next cruise, how to cope with a long-haul flight, and how to prepare a travel preparation checklist. And don’t miss my recommendations on travel safety, senior travel, and travel photography.

I love to travel because there is so much to see around the world: breathtaking landscapes, ancient ruins, towns steeped in history, fascinating cultures, and modern marvels. Now I want to share the tips that I believe can help to enhance your journey.

Here is your chance to master the art of successful globetrotting!
Don’t leave home without reading it…

Buy the Book: https://www.amazon.com/Happy-Travels-101-sightseeing-enhance-ebook/dp/B072HR1ZC7

Also by Toni Pike

 The most recent review for The Rock of Magus

If you enjoy religious conspiracy thrillers, you will love Pike’s exciting, fast-paced adventure that takes readers to Rome and into the Vatican.

Similar to Dan Brown’s main character, Robert Langdon in The DaVinci Code, Pike’s central character, Jotham Fletcher, also possesses unequalled expertise in a particular subject, in this case, the shadowy, religious figure Simon Magus. I find it fascinating that Pike built her series around this little-known historical figure, a magician and cult leader at the time of the Apostles. Magus is mentioned in the Bible in Acts 8:9-24 as he tries to “buy” the anointing of the Holy Spirit, but was rebuked by the Apostles as a sorcerer and wicked charlatan. The heart of Pike’s adventure lies in this fictional, 21st century Simonian Sect, whose cult followers are nothing short of fanatical, according to her series.

Pike sets the scene for suspense, thrills and twists that leads readers to believe that Fletcher may not solve this mystery, as insurmountable odds stack against him and his female partner. I found the book to be a nail-biter and a page-turner!

The characters are believable, with Fletcher expressing doubt at one point, but using his shaky confidence to navigate the labyrinthine Vatican grounds as he and Madena attempt to solve the mystery. Pike’s research is extensive and written from the perspective of having visited Rome. I personally love it when authors write from their intimate knowledge of a subject and from the locations they have been.

I highly recommend this adventure series and am looking forward to book #3, The Magus Epiphany.

Also by Toni Pike – recently released in March.

Find out more about Toni Pike, read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Toni-Pike/e/B009I70E8Y

Read more reviews on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14736589.Toni_Pike

For more information on Toni and her books and international buy links: https://tonipike.com/the-jotham-fletcher-mystery-thriller-series/

The next author update if for Charles E. Yallowitz who has just released Ritual of the Lost Lamb, his 13th book in the Legends of Windemere series.

About Ritual of the Lost Lamb

Death is a blessing that the Baron is not ready to bestow upon his precious guest.

In the aftermath of the Baron’s attack, Luke Callindor has disappeared and the only clue is a psychic scream of agony that Dariana cannot ignore. Fearing that a journey to Shayd will start their final battle before they are ready, the champions have devised another way to rescue their friend. With permission from the gods, Nyx has begun the long-sealed Ritual of the Lost Lamb. It is a complicated and exhausting spell, which is made even more difficult by a new enemy whose only goal is to make all of the Baron’s enemies suffer.

It is a race against time where every passing minute brings Luke Callindor one step closer to a fate worse than oblivion.

Buy the new book: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07145TX46/

A selection of books by Charles E. Yallowitz

One of the latest reviews for book 12 of the series The Spirit Well.

All is not as it appears in Windemere and the Champions are in for their greatest challenge. The final temple stands between them and the Baron. But before they get on their way, Nyx is at the receiving end of endless questions and accusations from her family concerning her relationship with her beloved. Are they married? When will they get married? Nyx’s temper flares and she returns to her lover’s arms for comfort.

The Champions band together and head to Rodillen then to the Spirit Well. The only problem is that Dariana’s memories are wiped clean (mysterious) and cannot remember where this final temple is located. When she asks the Mayor about it, she finds herself in a bind. Or is it all part of her plan?

Dariana’s father is the Baron and while she knows more than she lets on, her actions propel the Champions into a time where memories are fabricated and Luke is separated from the rest of the Champions. Is he dead? No one knows for sure. It takes the Champions working together as one to unravel the truth.

This book twisted my emotions and took me on an adventure I didn’t see coming. While Yallowitz drops clues along the way, when something big happens (won’t reveal what… you’ll have to read to find out), it was like the floor drops away. It was so shocking that I almost quit reading it. Almost. My curiosity kept me riveted to the story and the ending was even better than I could’ve hoped.

For all you fantasy romance readers out there, you’re in for a treat. Yallowitz adds the perfect blend of romance, intrigue, action and drama. I didn’t know the author was a romantic at heart. Well done!

If you’re a fan of The Two Towers, you’ll really love this book. It’s a standalone in the Windemere series with plenty of shocking twists and turns.

A must read for epic fantasy readers and if magic is more your thing, you’ll really love The Spirit Well.

Find out more about Charles Yallowitz and buy his books: https://www.amazon.com/Charles-E.-Yallowitz/e/B00AX1MSQA

Read more reviews on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6965804.Charles_E_Yallowitz

Connect to Charles E. Yallowitz via his blogwww.legendsofwindemere.com

I was delighted to receive another review for What’s in a Name my latest short story collection.. my thanks to Annette Rochelle Aben of

About What’s in a Name

There are names that have been passed down through thousands of years which have powerful and deep-rooted meaning to their bearers. Other names have been adopted from other languages, cultures and from the big screen. They all have one thing in common. They are with us from birth until the grave and they are how we are known to everyone that we meet.

There are classical names such as Adam, David and Sarah that will grace millions of babies in the future. There are also names that parents have invented or borrowed from places or events in their lives which may last just one lifetime or may become the classic names of tomorrow.

Whatever the name there is always a story behind it. In What’s in a Name? – Volume One, twenty men and women face danger, love, loss, romance, fear, revenge and rebirth as they move through their lives.

Anne changes her name because of associations with her childhood, Brian carries the mark of ancient man, Jane discovers that her life is about to take a very different direction, and what is Isobel’s secret?

The latest review for the collection

Pour yourself a cuppa, find a comfy perch and dig into this book! The talent and versatility of author, Sally Cronin, shines in What’s in a Name. She introduces us to 20 people, who by the end of each story, will remind us of either someone we know or wish we did know. There is nothing predictable about the characters, their lives or the endings of any of the stories.

To prove the point, pay particular attention to Isobel, Diana, Jack, and Hector. Want a tug at the heart strings? Then give Grace, Alexander, Francis and Anne a read. While I have only mentioned a few here, you will be equally delighted and entertained by the remaining dozen tales about found in What’s in a Name. by Sally Cronin. I look forward to the rest of the alphabet, that will comprise the next book!

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Whats-Name-Sally-Cronin-ebook/dp/B01N6Y8BK1

Also by Sally Cronin

 Read the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Sally-Cronin/e/B0096REZM2

Read other reviews on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7979187.Sally_Cronin

Connect to Sally: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/about-me/

Thank you for dropping by today and please help spread the news of the new books and review.. thanks Sally

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore Author Update – Carmen Stefanescu, Rick McBee and Malia Ann Haberman


Welcome to the Friday author update and good news for Carmen Stefanescu this week with a brand new release, Dracula’s Prodigy and another great review for her book Until Life us do Part that is already on the shelves of the bookstore.

About Dracula’s Prodigy

Running from the hands of an abusive husband, on the verge of committing suicide, a series of strange events/apparitions make Linda reassess her life. She embarks on a thorough research regarding her unusual ancestor—Vlad, the Impaler, aka Dracula.

Can Linda discover the truth regarding Vlad among the countless malicious stories, exaggerated legends and whispered slander dating back to 15th century? Is he a hero, a brave protector of his hard tried people and country? Or a cruel monster feeding on the blood of those impaled at his order?

And is good-looking Jody really helping Linda regain her trust in men and love, or is he another evil envoy of a past that haunts her and threatens her life?

Two of the early reviews for the book

This was a solid continuation of Dracula’s Mistress although it was a surprising twist that this book was based in modern times, I was expecting it to be his daughter’s story next but this was a fun and interesting story and I thoroughly enjoyed it perhaps even more than the first book. I will be interested in seeing what comes next.
If you enjoy a story with a bit of romance, despair and a historical twist than I believe you will enjoy this story.

Suspense, intrigue and blood seekers. The characters were wildly tasteful. It was a great weekend read. Chapters grew your interest as you hoped to see good things happen for those that needed it. Any Dracula’s fans needs to get this. I love vamps.

Read the reviews so far and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Draculas-Prodigy-Mistress-Book-ebook/dp/B071KVQ48W

Buy Dracula’s Mistress: https://www.amazon.com/Draculas-Mistress-Carmen-Stefanescu-ebook/dp/B06XNW7RXD

Also by Carmen Stefanescu

The latest review for Till Life do us Part

A ghostly suspense that gives a sense of old world charm, but is set mostly in the contemporary era. Ms Stefanescu has a style all her own, rich with location descriptions, and full of quirky characters.

Barbara Heyer is a child when she realizes she can hear the voices of dead people. These ghostly whispers seek her assistance in easing the pain of their loved one’s whom death has forced them to leave behind. Along her journey, she gets mixed up with brutal murderers and their victims, including her brother. And, of course, she meets a gorgeous detective who makes her feel more than she ever has before. But their love story is not smooth, and Barbara is forced to explore her previous life where she met a violent death.

Ms Stefanescu weaves the past and present together seamlessly, and keeps the pace tight. I loved how she made Barbara’s communication with ghosts so natural, like it was something that was a normal occurrence in our lives. And I also loved the travel back in time, to when Barbara was sadly abused and victimized as a witch.

I must admit to being a tad impatient with our intrepid detective. He moved too slowly for my liking as it took him fourteen years to close the deal with our lovely Barbara.

But overall, I was hooked from the first page, and took very few breaks, as I was desperate to know how the story ended. I highly recommend this book to anybody who enjoys a ghostly paranormal written in an old-world style. And I award it a fantastic 5 stars!

Read all the reviews and buy Till Life us do Part: https://www.amazon.com/Till-Life-Do-Us-Part-ebook/dp/B01GGKSQEY

Connect to Carmen via her blog: http://shadowspastmystery.blogspot.ro/

My second update is for Rick McBee and his book The Ghosts of Ukuthula set in South Africa.

About the book

By 1989 the majority of African nations have gained liberation from colonial rule. One by one, as these countries throw off the mantle of white European oppression, the pressure on others increases. In south Africa this only hardens the intransigence of the white rulers. The Republic of South Africa eventually remains as the last white minority dominated nation in Africa. A nation is about to explode.

In an attempt to lower the levels of violence, the moderate South African leaders begin negotiations to loosen the reins of apartheid. Allowing black Africans into the government is seen as a better option than having terrorism tear the nation apart. But, as with all periods of change, not everyone is happy with their new plans.

The hard liners of apartheid, within the secret police and ruling government, are out to maintain their power. They form an unholy alliance with the communist forces of the black liberation army under the control of Russia’s Colonel Petrov. Thus a ‘Third Force’ is formed within the country of South Africa, but controlled by outsiders.

The ‘Third Force” is bent on increasing tensions and violence between the black African tribes and white Africans ruling the country. The Fascist Afrikaners believe that black violence will provoke a backlash from the white community and allow apartheid to be reinstated in full force. The Communists believe that this same violence will result in a black African uprising. They want chaos so they can take complete control of the country and kick out the whites.

The most recent review on Amazon and Goodreads

Intervention on February 3, 2017

Jacob Nkwe, aka Zulu, was CIA and worked for Jim Collins, a director in the state department. Zulu’s mission was to collect intel on Colonel Petrov, a Russian who led a force trying to prevent a black coalition government in South Africa. Petrov was going to put his own people in power and steal the county’s resources. When Zulu’s office building in Pretoria was bombed, he went ghost and got a job at a game park in Namibia. He also got in a gang smuggling weapons for diamonds with half brother, Bakai. Debbie Kotzee, the park manager, had an affair with Zulu, but was linked to the South African Secret Police. At this point McBee ups the plot’s intensity as his characters escape danger and save South Africa’s future.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Ghosts-Ukuthula-Rick-McBee-ebook/dp/B01GNGCKHK

Also by Rick McBee

Read the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Rick-McBee/e/B001K8HIXI

Connect to Richard via his blog: https://rickmcbee.me

The final update today is for author Malia Ann Haberman and the second book in The Chase Tinker Series, Chase Tinker and the House of Secrets.

About the book

After spending the summer at his grandfather’s gigantic, incredibly magical house, thirteen-year-old Chase Tinker thought things couldn’t get any more bizarre, or that the secrets and lies couldn’t get any worse, but he was wrong.

As summer turns into Autumn, join Chase and his family for even more magical craziness. Craziness that will include: the sneezing of strange powers, the reappearance of the wicked Marlowe family, another frightening kidnapping, the discovery of a mysterious, magical Japanese-American girl, a dangerous rescue mission, and a secret so mind-boggling, it will lead to a shocking climatic finish that will turn Chase’s world completely upside down.

Fantastic Read! on April 24, 2017

This is the second book in The Chase Tinker series. I absolutely loved it!

Chase Tinker is a wonderful character and I really liked him from the first time I met him in the first book. I have enjoyed watching his development from a frustrated teen into someone who I would be proud to know.

In this second book, which is told mostly from Chase’s point of view though other characters also have their say, Chase finds himself having to deal with new magical powers that he struggles to control. Not only that, the Marlowe’s are still intent on finding the Relic hidden in the attic of the Tinker house. Shocking secrets are revealed and a new face is introduced. Nori is the same age as Chase and is a cousin to Chase, Andy and Janie.

This is a wonderful story full of adventure, danger and mystery, and I found myself sitting on the edge of my seat as Chase, Andy, Nori and Persephone face danger once more. There are several twists and turns that keep a reader guessing. I found myself on a roller coaster of emotion from beginning to end. There’s a huge fight scene full of action and danger, which was described in such detail that I could picture it in my mind with ease. This fight leads to a shocking accident that brought tears to my eyes. I reached the end of the book with a little bit of sadness, as I didn’t want the story to end. This book doesn’t end with a cliffhanger, but it still left me looking forward to reading the next book in the series, Chase Tinker and the House of Destiny, as soon as possible.

Malia Ann Haberman has written a entertaining and exciting story for middle grade children. This is the sequel to her debut book. I love her writing style, which is fast paced and imaginative. The flow is wonderful too. I would definitely read more of her books in the future.

I highly recommend this book to middle grade readers aged 9 to 14. However, I also recommend this book (and series) to adults who love reading middle grade fantasy, or to those who are fans of books like Harry Potter.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Chase-Tinker-House-Secrets-Book-ebook/dp/B01LWR2L2O/

Other books in the series and also by Malia Ann Haberman

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Find out more about Malia Ann Haberman and her books: https://www.amazon.com/Malia-Ann-Haberman/e/B009CJ0DNE

Connect to Malia Ann Haberman via her blog: https://maliaannhaberman.wordpress.com

Thank you for dropping by today and it would be great if you could share the news from these authors by hitting a couple of share buttons on your way out the door.. thank you Sally.

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore Author Update – D. Wallace Peach, Sue Coletta and Christoph Fischer


Welcome to the first author update of the week and we begin with the fourth and final book in The Rose Shield series, Kari’s Reckoning, by D. Wallace Peach published on April 20th.

About Kari’s Reckoning

The epic adventure concludes as the Shiplord vies for what he desires—the throne of Ellegeance. Their power in jeopardy, influencers surrender their oaths, their loyalties fractured. Rose, a child of untrained and reckless talent, once again becomes a pawn in the quest for control.

As the Cull Tarr solidify their rule, Guardian plots rebellion. Catling and Whitt, each gifted with singular skills, seek to sway the course of the conflict. Oathbreakers, traitors, and those desperate to save Rose collide in a final battle for the realm.

Yet, a third player emerges in the deadly game. The kari, spirits of a sentient planet, command the air, water, and land. They manipulate events to satisfy their sovereign designs and care not who survives the human war.

Buy Kari’s Reckoning: https://www.amazon.com/Karis-Reckoning-Rose-Shield-Book-ebook/dp/B06XJY77CF

The other three books in the Rose Shield Series

One of the latest reviews for Catling’s Bane

In D. Wallace Peach’s Catling’s Bane, the first installment in the Rose Shield trilogy, the young Catlin lives in a world of poverty, repression, and inhumanity. When still a toddler, her mother sells her for whatever she can get, which is where Catling’s life looks up. Her new family is loving, caring, humane, with a family pig business that requires working children to run. They sell their piglets at a weekly market which coincides with hanging days–when the overflow residents of the prison are hanged to make room for others. To make this acceptable to the population, the ruling class uses ‘influencers’ to throw a web of happiness and contentment out over everyone in the crowd. People–even family members–gleefully watch their friends and neighbors killed. But Catling has the power to break that web, penetrate it, and allow others to see the horror of murder lurking below the pleasant emotions. When stakeholders on both sides of this system find out she has this ability, her life changes forever.

What an excellent start to this trilogy. The characters are strong. The passion obvious. The plot addicting. Peach’s ability to weave words into glorious pictures of events and places is perfectly matched to the fantasy world she has created. The details of this environment are exquisite and believable:

“Riverfolk moored up at the docks with skiffs bearing buckets of silver eels and glass bottles dense with luminescence. Ferries plied their way up from Ava-Grea delivering merchants and travelers from distant tiers. Pulled by waterdragons, the vessels bucked the swift current. The creatures’ green-scaled heads reared through the surface, tapered snouts sprayed clouds of mist, and fins stroked the water like wings. The voyage complete, tall rivermasters with white hair flowing like waterfalls beckoned the creatures in. They slipped off tethering ropes, and the waterdragons dove.”

Highly recommended to anyone who loves fantasy adventure and big dreams.

A small selection of other books by D.Wallace Peach

To discover all the books and read the reviews and buy: https://www.amazon.com/D.-Wallace-Peach/e/B00CLKLXP8

Connect to D. Wallace Peach via her website: http://mythsofthemirror.com.

Sue Coletta’s much awaited new release, Cleaved- Book 2 of The Grafton County Series, will be available from this Wednesday so still time to buy at the pre-order price.

About Cleaved

Author Sage Quintano writes about crime. Her husband Niko investigates it. Together they make an unstoppable team. But no one counted on a twisted serial killer, who stalks their sleepy community, uproots their happy home, and splits the threads that bonds their family unit.

Darkness swallows the Quintanos whole–ensnared by a ruthless killer out for blood. Why he focused on Sage remains a mystery, but he won’t stop till she dies like the others.

Women impaled by deer antlers, bodies encased in oil drums, nursery rhymes, and the Suicide King. What connects these cryptic clues? For Sage and Niko, the truth may be more terrifying than they ever imagined.

One of early reviews from Goodreads : http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34676415-cleaved

Apr 08, 2017 Joe Broadmeadow rated it Five Stars

The title alone is the stuff of nightmares. Cleaved by Sue Coletta is the latest from the writing magic of this author.

Her characters, storyline, and imagination all meld into the perfect blend of suspense, tension, action, and emotion. Her prose sings more than tells the story. The words are crafted and woven into both subtle and shocking passages.

The intricacies of the plot will keep you guessing, and catching your breath, with each twist and turn. While the nature of the story contains some gruesome aspects, Coletta handles them with aplomb. She makes her point without gratuitous descriptions so common is less skillfully written thrillers.

This is an author rising to new levels in her craft. All of her books are good, this one is exceptional.

She takes you inside the mind of her main recurring character, Sage Quintano. You experience the story as she does. (Minor spoiler alert coming up.) As part of her research for the book, Coletta actually got inside an oil drum. I’ll leave it to your imagination why. But it should give you an indication of the commitment to excellence this author brings to her work.

Read this book. Read all this author’s work. You will not be disappointed. Terrified, scared, suffering elevated blood pressure, yes. Disappointed, no.

Buy Cleaved at the Pre-Order price: https://www.amazon.com/Cleaved-Grafton-County-book-2-ebook/dp/B06XS3HTGS/

Also by Sue Coletta

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Sue-Coletta/e/B015OYK5HO

Connect to Sue via her website: www.suecoletta.com

Another new release, this time for Christoph Fischer who released the travel adventure African August on April 13th. The official book launch and reading was April 29th at this last weekend’s LLandeilo Lit Fest.

A note from the author: https://writerchristophfischer.wordpress.com/2017/04/18/released-as-paperback-african-august-by-christoph-fischer/

I never planned to release this book, which breaks into a new genre for me: travel adventure. Then I was approached by Wanda Hartzenberg about her charity anthology for a dog rescue centre in California. I said I had nothing to offer her apart from this one book. Wanda was interested in the book, not least because she was born and lives in Africa. So the book underwent a long editing process to be included in the anthology.
In the US the e-book will be part of a charity, multi-author  box set in aid of  Santa Paula No Kill Animal Rescue Center in California http://www.santapaulaarc.org/

My travels took me to many places in Africa. I was never moved as much as when I visited an orphanage in Kampala. I hesitated to go because I imagined it to be depressing. Far from it: The children were so happy for our visits. I realised that while I couldn’t change the politics and problems in Africa, I could make a huge difference with nothing but just being there for them for a day.

So all proceeds of the paperback will go to M-Lisada Org. Kampala a charity supporting former street children in Kamapla, Uganda.

About African August

When Timothy, a budding author, puts his lucrative banking career on hold for the chance to go on the adventure of a lifetime in Africa, he gets far more than even he had bargained for. He teams up with a host of intriguing characters, from gay air stewards to beautiful, adventure-seeking women on his journey to self-fulfilment and self-discovery. Risking his life negotiating white-water rapids and encountering some unanticipated jungle dangers, Timothy has his eyes opened to harsh realities, worlds away from the cossetted life he’d been living back in London. Soon, he and his companions find themselves caught up in deadly civil unrest.

This is a tale of love, loss and growing up on a continent where the political situation is even more volatile than the weather, and where adventure and tragedy are only a heartbeat away. The wind can change very quickly in an African August…

For those of you who could not attend the launch and book reading buy the book and support a great cause: https://www.amazon.com/African-August-Christoph-Fischer/dp/1544677278

A small selection of other books by Christoph Fischer

Discover and buy all Christoph’s books: https://www.amazon.com/Christoph-Fischer/e/B00CLO9VMQ

Find out more about news from this weekend’s LLandeilo Lit Fest and Christoph: https://writerchristophfischer.wordpress.com

Thank you for dropping in today and please help spread the news of these outstanding authors’ work.  Thanks Sally

 

Smorgasbord Round Up – Divas, dastardly devils, and dedicated wordsmiths


Welcome to the week’s update of posts that you might have missed. As always I am very grateful for the time that you spend here, your comments and support in general. Whilst I have been known to talk to myself… I do prefer to converse with you.. please do even just say ‘Hi’ in the comments.. it is appreciated.

Our garden looks like a lumber yard with seven trees despatched into logs and kindling. they were not trees that provided nesting sites for any of our lovely wild birds and many were on their last legs. Three more have to go however; but they are more of a challenge.. they are 60 foot tall and were planted within two feet of the wall.. Their roots have damaged both the wall and the pavement as well as encroached into the road and so need to come out. Sad in some ways but they cannot be allowed to do more damage.

David is doing the tree climbing and chopping – taught by his father Geoff who if you have been reading The Colour of Life..you will know worked as a lumberjack when a young man. I do help occasionally with stripping branches to be put through the mulcher.. Music required and I have written a couple of short stories when working as pretty mind numbing.

I am really pleased that so many are participating in the marathon challenge.. (more later in the post) Several people are now knitting together their exercise programmes so that they can celebrate when they have completed 26 miles or the equivalent. I am half way thorugh my second marathon and hope to shave 30 minutes off my last one…

It is the #BloggersBash 2017 in London on June 10th that several of you are attending.. If you live in the UK and have not got your tickets yet then you need to get a twerk on… they are going fast.  You can buy them through Sacha Black’ site. Only £10 for the ticket.. and the fun of finally putting faces to the names that you know so well..https://sachablack.co.uk/2017/04/22/tick-tock-the-bash-clock-are-you-coming-bloggersbash-bloggersbash/

On with the posts from the week… thanks again for dropping in…. Sally

William Price King meets some legends.

Shirley Bassey did not have a great time during the 1960s and spent time in tax exile in Italy. However, the 1970s saw her career back on the fast track and it was a wonderful decade for her.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/26/william-price-meets-some-legends-dame-shirley-bassey-the-1970s/

Writer in residence extra – Paul Andruss – Venus in Furs

Finn Mac Cool

Another brilliant post from Paul’s archives that looks at the origins of the words we commonly use today ‘sadism’ and ‘masochism. Unlike the way it is portrayed (badly) in books and movies such as 50 Shades of Grey, it has a dark and sinister background that Paul uncovers in this informative article.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/28/writer-in-residence-extra-venus-in-furs-by-paul-andruss/

The Colour of Life – The Memoir of Geoff Cronin

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/29/the-colour-of-life-the-digs-in-dublin-1945-by-geoff-cronin/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/30/the-colour-of-life-the-nuns-at-the-glue-pot-1946-by-geoff-cronin/

Author Promotion – Book Reading at the Cafe.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/26/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore-book-reading-and-interview-with-matthew-drzymala/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/29/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore-book-reading-and-interview-yecheilyah-ysrayl/

Cafe and Bookstore – New Author on the shelves

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/24/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore-new-on-the-shelves-the-art-of-murder-by-dakota-mcgraw/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/26/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore-new-on-the-shelves-draculas-mistress-by-carmen-stefanescu/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/27/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore-new-on-the-shelves-heritage-of-deceit-short-story-graham-downs/

Cafe and Bookstore Update

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/24/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore-author-update-mary-c-blowers-bette-a-stevens-and-p-h-solomon/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/28/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore-author-update-janice-spina-pamela-s-wight-and-judith-barrow/

Smorgasbord Book Promotion – Air Your Reviews

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/25/smorgasbord-book-promotion-air-your-reviews-seumas-gallacher-and-john-w-howell/

Personal Stuff

Weekly Image and thoughts…

Smorgasbord Poetry

I am working my way through my poems that were written in my teens onwards and left to languish in a drawer.. this was written in 1998 following my first visit to my grandfather’s grave in Northern France where he died on November 2nd 1918. Just days before peace and having served since 1914 and been wounded three times.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/26/smorgasbord-poetry-requiem-for-a-grandfather-by-sally-cronin/

Time for some laffs..

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/25/time-for-some-laffs-ducks-seniors-and-boiled-eggs-be-careful-what-you-wish-for/

Afternoon video

Three videos for the price of one.. cat being a jerk, cat doing the washing up and a bulldog on a motorbike.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/24/afternoon-video-helpers-around-the-house/

Blogger Promotion – Some outstanding blog posts from the week.

Smorgasbord Blogger Daily

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/24/smorgasbord-blogger-daily-kevin-morris-curry-lives-d-g-kaye-paul-andruss-and-thom-hickey/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/25/smorgasbord-blogger-daily-25th-april-2017-patricia-salamone-teagan-geneviene-jane-dougherty-and-granny-moon/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/26/smorgasbord-blogger-daily-26th-april-2017-the-story-reading-ape-darlene-foster-sue-vincent-and-stuart-france-kirt-tisdale-and-teagan-geneviene-and-d-g-kaye/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/27/smorgasbord-blogger-daily-27th-april-2017-noelle-granger-saucebox-balroop-singh-and-beetley-pete/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/28/smorgasbord-blogger-daily-28th-april-2017-sue-vincent-jessica-norrie-russell-ray-teri-polen-with-darlene-foster-and-some-funnies/

Health: Let’s Walk a Marathon.

This is not about completing 26 miles in one go.. It is however a target that is meaningful. I was walking regularly but felt that apart from measuring the time and distance it was not leading anywhere. I know I felt better for it but I wanted to challenge myself more. I have no ligaments in my right knee so walking briskly is the most I can hope for. To make it more interesting I decided to use my new treadmill to walk a marathon. My first one took 10 hours over 14 days. I am now half way through my second marathon and have shaved a little time off.

In the weekly posts I am not just talking about walking but also the other areas of fitness that will help you achieve your own marathons.. including how to get more oxygen into your system with breathing exercises and the right fuel.

Coming up tomorrow.. how to burn fat more efficiently and some equivalents in terms of other exercises so that you can still complete a marathon if you swim, go to dance classes or zumba.

The posts so far.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/21/lets-walk-a-marathon-the-internal-fitness-programme-coming-next-week/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/24/lets-walk-a-marathon-internal-fitness-programme-preparation-day-plan-clothing-fluids-stretching/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/25/lets-walk-a-marathon-internal-fitness-programme-day-two-getting-enough-oxygen-to-walk/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/27/lets-walk-a-marathon-part-three-taking-in-the-right-fuel/

Smorgasbord Health

Smorgasbord Health 2017

Important new research into the link between Vitamin D deficiency and austism.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/04/27/smorgasbord-health-latest-research-into-vitamin-d-deficiency-link-to-autism/

Thank you for all your support this week and don’t forget that you are always welcome to promote your book, blog or other creative work here.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/smorgasbord-free-author-and-blogger-promotion-2017/

 

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – Janice Spina, Pamela S. Wight and Judith Barrow.


Janice Spina is celebrating as her book Jerry the Crabby Crayfish has won a prestigious Pinnacle Book Achievement Award. It won in the Best Books in Children’s Interest and it is the fourth award for Janice’s popular children’s books.

About Jerry the Crabby Crayfish and a note from Janice about the inspiration behind the story.

Jerry is a crabby crayfish who all day long wishes he could be a fish. One day something happens in the fish tank that makes Jerry change his mind. Read about the valuable lesson Jerry learns.

Here is a little information about Jerry. He was a real Crayfish that my husband and I had as a pet in one of our fish tanks. He was a beautiful shade of blue and quite a character. He was at times a little crabby and would warn the fish in the tank to stay away from him. When he was hungry he would tap the glass and beg for food. He would also warn my grandchildren not to bother him by waving his claws at them. They had a tendency to tap the glass to get his attention. They were sad when he passed. So was I.

One of the outstanding reviews for the book

If anyone thought fish and waterlife were boring, well, think again. Not in this entertaining story. It is more than just a rhyming story about crayfish. This pleasantly illustrated picture book includes both a wonderful lesson and information that will interest young children. The rhythm and pulse throughout the book produces a strong chant that children fall into naturally. The illustrations are sweet and simple, and they charmingly create a personality for each character. The brightly colored pictures are done in a style that is very close to that of children’s drawings, and nicely introduce children to the fascinating world of fish. This joyfully illustrated book is a lot of fun to read and leaf through. A great rhyming story that stays on your lips long after you are done with it. “Swish, swish, swish, I wish I were a fish!”

Janice Spina has created another wonderful book full of playful, funny, whimsical characters, one that entertains and promotes individuality. Although it is sometimes hard to be yourself, it is always the best rule. Imagination should be encouraged in children, and this book beautifully illustrates the concept for them. A great and entertaining book for young readers!

Read all the reviews and buy this award winning book: https://www.amazon.com/Jerry-Crabby-Crayfish-Janice-Spina/dp/0615966977

A selection of books by Janice Spina

Read the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Janice-Spina/e/B00HNET4HG

Connect to Janice via her website: https://jemsbooks.wordpress.com

The next update is for Pamela S. Wight who has just released this delightfully illustrated book, Birds of Paradise for children and adults alike. Beautifully illustrated by Shelley A. Steinle.

About the book

Sweet sparrows Bessie and Bert grow up as differently as night and day. Bessie is fearful of the dangers inherent in being a bird. She’s scared to leave her cozy branch. But Bert relishes flying in the sky and pecking delicious seeds on the ground, until he loses half a tail. Bessie and Bert uncover each other’s fears and, through a newfound friendship, re-discover the delight in being birds. Charming, lustrous illustrations and light, lilting verse delight children and adults alike as they gain a new appreciation for the joyous birds in their own backyard.

You can find out how this beautiful book was finally published by visiting the post on The Story Reading Ape’s blog

Thirty five years ago, I wrote a wonderful bird’s tale. About a bird who almost lost his tail.

Beta readers, university professors, parents of young children all loved my book about Bert and Bessie, two birds who needed to find each other to find themselves.

Then, “life happened.”

Read the rest of the post: https://thestoryreadingapeblog.com/2017/04/27/reserved-for-pam-wight/

Buy Birds of Paradise: https://www.amazon.com/Birds-Paradise-Pamela-S-Wight/dp/0998460613

Also by Pamela S. Wight

Read the reviews and buy all the books: https://www.amazon.com/Pamela-S.-Wight/e/B00AYXT6R6

Connect to Pamela via her website: https://roughwighting.net/

Last but definitey not least is Judith Barrow, whose three books set during and after World War II are highly regarded. I enjoyed reading them and eagerly await Judith’s next release. Time to update the first book in the series Pattern of Shadows and the place to start obviously if you have not yet read Judith’s books.

About Pattern of Shadows

Mary is a nursing sister at Lancashire prison camp for the housing and treatment of German POWs. Life at work is difficult but fulfilling, life at home a constant round of arguments, until Frank Shuttleworth, a guard at the camp turns up. Frank is difficult to love but persistent and won’t leave until Mary agrees to walk out with him.

A recent review for Pattern of Shadows

Wonderful story! By Cathy Murray on 11 April 2017

Pattern of Shadows is a wonderful story set in the latter days of World War Two somewhere in the north of England. Mary Howarth is a nurse who is part of a medical team given the unenviable task of caring for sick and injured prisoners of war at the prison camp hospital. Mary starts a relationship with one of the guards at the camp, Frank Shuttleworth. The relationship proves difficult for Mary but Frank is persistent.

Meanwhile, Mary’s home life is far from easy and she finds solace in her work. As the novel evolves Mary’s life becomes increasingly fraught and complicated. To say more would be to give away an extremely well constructed plot which explores some challenging issues of the day. I’ve already read Silent Trauma by this author and know that Judith Barrow can write about difficult subjects with sensitivity and honesty. The writer displays that same talent again in this novel.

The novel is well researched and the sense of time and place is established securely. The author has created a group of characters who are very real and the dialogue and interactions between them are a strength of the writing. The romance element of the novel has a degree of predictability but when the concluding chapter is reached there is a sense of relief that what was anticipated has occurred. Pattern of Shadows is the first of a three part set which takes the story on further and it’s going to be fascinating to see what happens next.

Read some of the 77 reviews for the book and buy: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Pattern-Shadows-Judith-Barrow-ebook/dp/B00940YWKQ

Also by Judith Barrow

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Judith-Barrow/e/B0043RZJV6

A cover reveal for Judith’s new book

Connect to Judith via her website and blog: https://judithbarrowblog.com/

Thank you for dropping by today and if you are in the bookstore and have some news to share then please email me on sally.cronin@moyhill.com

If you are not in the bookstore then find out how you can enjoy regular updates for your books.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore/

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore Author Update – Mary C. Blowers, Bette A. Stevens and P.H. Solomon


Welcome to this week’s first cafe and bookstore update. And the first author with some news is Mary C. Blowers in collaboration with Leah Cutter, Blaze Ward, Douglas Smith and Prasenjeet Kumar with a box set for authors. Ultimate Guides to Indie Publishing – Make yourself a best seller. On pre-order for April 26th.

About the Ultimate guides To Indie Publishing Box Set

I remember sending photocopies of my manuscript out to children’s book publishers, only to be met by rejection.

Imagine my delight when I heard I could publish on my own very inexpensively.

Authors no longer have to wait for acceptance by the big Five–Hachette, HarperCollins, MacMillan, Penguin Random House and Simon Schuster–or find an agent. Just write and upload. You’ll need a cover and some other features, but it’s really possible to do it yourself.

My children’s book? It’s now The Prophecy of Enchantria, available on Amazon along with 18 others.

Read how I did it, and how the others in this box set did it. We offer our recommendations for many facets of the writing career. Make 2017 the year you get published.

Table of Contents
1. “Create Your Book Start to Finish” by Mary C. Blowers
2. “Business for Breakfast, Volume 1” by Leah Cutter
3. “Business for Breakfast, Volume 3” by Blaze Ward
4. “Playing the Short Game” by Douglas Smith
5. “How to be an Author Entrepreneur Without Spending a Dime” by Prasenjeet Kumar
6. “How to Market Your Books Without Spending a Dime” by Prasenjeet Kumar

Buy the book at the pre-order price of $5.75 for delivery on April 26th: https://www.amazon.com/Ultimate-Guides-Indie-Publishing-Ebook-ebook/dp/B072B5DM39

About Hoarder’s Nightmare released on April 17th.

Beware of your stuff taking on a life of its own.

Do you think you might be a hoarder? Read about Mina, who buys something from a thrift store and has major trouble with it. Something gets lost in the clutter and could involve legal trouble! Read as she travels to distant places and finds treasures beyond her wildest dreams. But do they last?

A small selection of other books by Mary C. Blowers

Read the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Mary-Blowers/e/B006X9C9CE

Connect to Mary via her blog: https://maryblowers.com/

Our next author, Bette A. Stevens is offering her book Amazing Matilda at 99c in celebration of Earth Day 2017. The monarch butterfly and milkweed (the caterpillar’s food source) are endangered.

About Amazing Matilda

Inspire the Kids with an Award-winning (Excellence in Children’s Literature) Monarch Butterfly Tale.

In this age of instant gratification, there’s an award-winning children’s picture book out that teaches kids that patience and hard work really do pay off.

‘AMAZING MATILDA: A Monarch’s Tale’ is a timely tale that follows MATILDA, a tiny monarch caterpillar, from the time she hatches from her egg on a giant milkweed leaf until she realizes her dream to fly. The story provides challenges and adventure at every turn.

Grandparents, parents and teachers will find that AMAZING MATILDA is a book that kids will want to read themselves and hear read to them again and again.

The latest reviews  for Amazing Matilda

on April 20, 2017

I love nature and animals. All animals. I love butterflies. When I saw Amazing Matilda, I had to buy and read it. Little Matilda is desperate to fly, but doesn’t know how. This is a wonderful and cute story about learning patience. It’s an encouraging book for children and adults alike. The story takes you from Matilda as a small caterpillar to her metamorphosis as a beautiful Monarch butterfly. A quick read, you’ll be done with it in no time at all.
I highly recommend this book to lovers of nature, animals and children of all ages from two to 100. It is beautifully yet simply illustrated.

I just read this little cutie… it is a great learning tool, especially for the extremely young… the sentence structure in some places could be shortened (for the extremely young), but otherwise it will help to teach kids to keep trying no matter what, that anything is possible… I will definitely be suggesting this to my cuz, to read to her new baby… thanks for putting this out in the world…

Read all the reviews and buy the book at 99c: https://www.amazon.com/Amazing-Matilda-Childrens-Literature-Butterfly-ebook/dp/B00AU9ZISA

Also by Bette A. Stevens

Read the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Bette-A.-Stevens/e/B009GOYT1M

Connect to Bette via her Website/blog: http://www.4writersandreaders.com

The next update is for fantasy author P.H. Soloman who continues to receive excellent reviews for The Bow of Destiny (The Bow of Hart Saga Book 1) published in September 2015.

About The Bow of Destiny

Fantasia Reviews 2016 Book of the Year, “in the vein of R. A. Salvatore and Piers Anthony.”

Haunted by his past. Hunted in the present. Uncertain what is real.

Athson has seen things that aren’t there and suffered fits since being tragically orphaned as a child at the hands of trolls and Corgren the wizard. When a strange will mentioning a mysterious bow comes into his possession, he’s not sure it’s real. But the trolls that soon pursue him are all too real and dangerous. And what’s worse, these raiders serve Corgren and his master, the hidden dragon, Magdronu, who are responsible for the destruction of his childhood home. Athson is drawn into a quest for the concealed Bow of Hart by the mystic Withling, Hastra, but he isn’t always sure what’s real and who his enemies are. With Corgren and Magdronu involved, Athson must face not only frequent danger but his grasp on reality and the reasons behind his tragic past.

One of the latest reviews for The Bow of Destiny

I’ve never written a fantasy story, but I love to read the genre. There’s something about being transported to a different realm where various creatures live in unfamiliar habitats, food and currency are foreign to me, and (almost always) there’s an epic quest.

P. H. Solomon’s THE BOW OF DESTINY fulfills everything I look for in a fantasy and more.

This is the story of Athson, son of Ath, who was raised by elves when his parents were violently killed by trolls and an evil wizard. That sounds like a story in and of itself, but it’s only the backstory to this wonderful tale.

Athson is such a relatable character—which is saying something, because in the beginning of the novel, it’s not even clear that he’s sane. He’s having visions of dead people and dogs, and he needs medicine to keep his fits under control. But it’s this vulnerability—and the unreliability of his narration—that makes him such a compelling character. When he is given “the inheritance” and told to seek the bow destined for him, you can really feel his confusion and distress. Masterfully done.

Athson has two journeys in one—his personal journey regarding the bow and his group’s journey to find the Withing’s stolen book. What’s a Withing? Well, I don’t want to give too much away, but Hastra is powerful and revered and Athson doesn’t trust her. There are secrets kept on both sides, secrets that could have disastrous implications.

Of all the characters we meet on his journey, I’m particularly fond of the giant Ralda. He is brave, kind, fearless, and tortured by tragedy in his past. All of the characters were well-developed and easy to relate to, but I could read volumes of Ralda’s story.

If the novel wasn’t exciting enough, the epilogue blew me away. It was totally unexpected, and I can’t wait to read the next installment.

Solomon hit the ground running with the first novel in the series. I highly recommend it.

Read some of the 50 reviews for The Bow of Destiny and buy: https://www.amazon.com/Bow-Destiny-Hart-Saga-Book-ebook/dp/B014AZ5DMU

Also by P.H. Solomon

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/P.-H.-Solomon/e/B00LU4XNQS

Connect to P.H. Solomon via his Website: http://phsolomon.com

Thank you for dropping in and if you are in the bookstore and have changed a book cover, got a great review, have an offer or have released a new book.. just let me know sally.cronin@moyhill.com.. I do try to check every author myself over a period of two or three weeks but I will miss updates.. Any news goes in on of these posts that go out Mondays and Fridays… it is free so you have nothing to lose but the time it takes you to send me an email.

Sally’s Cafe and bookstore Author Update – Toni Pike, Jaye Marie and Christy Birmingham


Welcome to the Friday Cafe and Bookstore update where authors on the shelves can share new releases, fantastic reviews and offers on their books. Whilst I do make every effort to check all the authors in the bookstore every few weeks, it is very helpful if you drop me a line to sally.cronin@moyhill.com.

Just a reminder about some of the benefits of being in the bookstore.

You can enjoy regular updates that puts your work in front of my 26,000+ contacts here and on social media. Most of whom are authors themselves, but more importantly readers of books. You also belong to a growing community of supportive writers who are happy to share across their own networks.

For example. The average Cafe Update receives on average 40 to 50 retweets over the course of a week. Most authors that follow me have between 5,000 – 15,000+ followers of their own on Twitter. At the lower number your work is being promoted to over 200,000 potential readers.

I cannot promise that it will result in sales, but because I put the your name in the headline, it does mean that google picks the post up whenever someone searches your name. This boosts your own efforts to develop an online presence.

If you are not already in the Cafe and Bookstore then here is the post that tells you how:

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore/

Now for today’s featured authors and the first is Toni Pike with a departure from the Jotham Fletcher mystery thriller series which I will of course mention a little later. Today I am showcasing Toni’s latest book, published on March 26th, which is 100 Secrets to Love, Health and Wealth.

About the book

LEARN THE SECRETS TO FINDING A JOB AND CREATING A LIFE THAT YOU LOVE.

The author was once set upon by some wild ducks keen to defend their territory. Do you have ducks like that in your life, so out of control that you hardly know which way to turn? They are the ones that you need to approach and tame, then put into a line so that you can:

Increase your wealth, improve your health and achieve your dreams.

Here, Toni Pike shares her one hundred secrets to success. This guide can easily be read in just a couple of hours. In this short book, you will learn how to:
• reduce stress
• balance your budget
• make positive changes in your career
• guide your children
• declutter your home, and
• live life to the full.

If you are young, here are skills that will help equip you for the rest of your life.
If you are in the midst of your career, you will find ways to transform your journey.
If you are approaching retirement, you can learn how to make the most of that exciting time.

There are some people who might think that these ideas are so simple that everyone should know them. The truth is that many people never reach their full potential or even try to achieve their goals.

Open your mind, and see if you can use these methods to turn your life around. When you do that, you will find that your wealth will increase, your health is likely to improve and you will live the life that you have only been dreaming about for far too long.

There are ten chapters, each representing one of those ducks in your life that you need to tame:
Life – Making the most of every moment
Health – Looking after your body
Career – Finding a job you love
Money – Increasing your wealth and balancing your budget
Home – Simplifying your living space
Family – Finding harmony with your children and parents
Friends – Maintaining social contacts and searching for romance
Leisure – Choosing activities that enrich your life
Travel – Exploring the world
Technology – Using technology and maximising your productivity

Don’t miss this chance to transform your life!

Buy the book at its launch offer of 99p: https://www.amazon.com/100-Secrets-Love-Health-Wealth-ebook/dp/B06XW2V61J

One of the reviews for The Magus Covenant

A beautiful edge of the seat thriller based on Simon the Magician or Simon Magus mentioned in various places in the Bible. The way the story is woven, the characters developed, the twists and turns that the plot develops as it moves along makes the book alluring, fascinating and irresistible. The revelation at the end takes the reader by total surprise and makes this book a topnotch one! One gets enthralled as one goes through each page! I thoroughly enjoyed this book and look forward to reading Toni’s other book too!

Read the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Toni-Pike/e/B009I70E8Y

Find out more about Toni and connect via her website: https://tonipike.com/

The next update is for Jaye Marie who has a FREE offer for her book The Last Life: Introducing Detective David Snow.

About the book

Kate Devereau wakes up in a hospital, unable to speak or move. Her brain has shut down, refusing to acknowledge her dark and disturbing past, concealing a web of painful secrets.
Michael Barratt brought her to the hospital, insisting that her ex-husband had tried to kill her. And from the state of him, had tried to kill him too. He had been searching for Kate for years, ever since their doomed love affair, only to discover someone else had been hunting her too.

With the help of the DI David Snow, Kate will gradually piece her life back together, only to discover the nightmare is far from over.

Her first instinct is to run, but David Snow convinces her to stay and help him put an end to the nightmare. A nightmare that will get progressively worse before it gets better.
Haunted by his own demons, will the Snowman manage to catch the twisted killer?
Evil lurks in this story and people die, but amidst the tears and heartache, a lost love struggles to survive…

Also by Jaye Marie

 A review for The Ninth Life.

If you like the thriller genre that keeps up the momentum then this would be a good read for you. The pace never falters, building up the plot and characters with timely intervention. The author cleverly keeps the story centred around the main character, with the other players coming into the story and yet there are no plot holes or false timings.

Not once did I get bored reading it or find the story faltering at all – definitely one of those where ‘you need to know what happens next’ but I think the author’s gift when writing this is to keep the protagonist centre whilst keeping the reader constantly hooked. The antagonist is typically a nasty character, one whom the reader takes an instant dislike to and the edge he adds to the story is almost palpable.

Other characters are kept to a minimum but play pivotal roles in the story; the good thing here is you never know quite how they will turn out. Will your fears be unfounded? Or did you correctly guess the next step? The ending is not what you would expect (another good talent to have when writing) but you’ll have to read the book!

Find out more about Jaye Marie and buy her books: https://www.amazon.com/Jaye-Marie/e/B00O2ZUFOK

Connect to Jaye Marie via her website: https://jenanita01.com/

My next update is for poet Christy Birmingham who joined the authors in the Cafe and Bookstore in March. She recently received another excellent review for her collection Versions of the Self.

About the collection

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.

The latest review on Amazon

Versions of the Self is a collection of poetry that inspires and enthralls. Each thought-provoking piece is one to be savored. A variety of topics are explored, from nature (Painted Mountains) to simple pleasures (A Sundae Type of Day), from love to heartbreak. Ultimately, this collection is about relationships in all its forms. Christy Birmingham delves deep into the bonds of family (Tender Hands) and friendship, and she also examines the many ways love can go wrong (and right). But the most important relationship she writes about is the relationship we have with ourselves, or more specifically, with the many versions of ourselves that reside within us.

I have so many favorites within the pages of this book. In “Equality and Vision,” Christy honors women from our past, present, and future. Beautifully and delicately woven, “Introspection and Suffocation” resonated with me for many reasons. “Beauty, In Pursuit” examines our society’s relationship with trends and obsession with outer beauty. I could go on and on.

If you love poetry, or if you are interested in branching out and reading more poetry, I would highly recommend this book.

Read all the reviews and buy the collection: https://www.amazon.com/Versions-Self-Christy-Birmingham/dp/0994094906

Also by Christy Birmingham

Pathways to Illumination is available exclusively at Redmund Productions: http://redmundpro.com/book-store/pi/

Read more reviews for Christy’s work on Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7177834.Christy_Birmingham

Connect to Christy via her website: https://poeticparfait.com/

Thanks for dropping in today and if you would like to join the other authors enjoying regular updates then all it will cost you is time.  Thanks Sally