Smorgasbord Air Your Reviews – Balroop Singh and Robert Eggleton

Welcome to Thursday where I share recent and past reviews for authors in the Cafe and Bookstore. First is for Balroop Singh with a recent review for her poetry collection Emerging from the Shadows.

About Emerging from the Shadows

From darkness into light, from despair onto the wider ways of hope…life oscillates between sunshine and shadows. Emerging from shadows is a choice, which lies dormant, which can be gently inspired by self-talk. Each poem in this book banks on the hope of emerging stronger, saner, positive and resilient. Each poem in this book would talk to you, revealing layers of enclosed emotions. Each poem would divulge a secret path that could lead you into the world of poise and serenity.

When turbulences hit, when shadows of life darken, when they come like unseen robbers, with muffled exterior, when they threaten to shatter your dreams, it is better to break free rather than get sucked by the vortex of emotions.

 And here is the review

“Beneath that beauty lie broken dreams
Beneath that smile recline unspoken words
That gentle caress hides frozen fallacy
Feigning to hold forlorn finesse.”

These delightful words are the opening stanza of the first poem, entitled When Darkness Deepens, that feature in Balroop Singh’s new book of poetry.

Each poem featured in the book comprises of beautifully constructed phrases which together tell a story. Some of the poems are sad and some are happy, all are filled with mystery and delight.

My interpretations of three of Balroop’s poems are as follows:

The poem Emerging from Shadows encourages the reader to be brave and rise up above obstacles in your path, grasping at life and making the best of it.

Why I walked away …. teaches the reader how to turn your back on negativity and sadness and how to break free from the shackles of unhappy past events. It is a joyous poem of a search for liberation.

Outside and inside – a tale of that illustrates that settling for the deception of second best and the sanctuary of the easily attained leads to perpetual self doubt and anxiety.

Each poem in this book is a voyage of self discovery.

Head over and buy the collection:

Also by Balroop Singh

Read the reviews and buy the books:

Read more reviews and follow Balroop on Goodreads:

Connect to Balroop Singh via her blog:

And now for the most recent review for Robert Eggleton’s book Rarity from the Hollow which has just passed its 100th review.

Author proceeds have been donated to a child abuse prevention program operated by Children’s Home Society of West Virginia.


About the book

Lacy Dawn’s father relives the Gulf War, her mother’s teeth are rotting out, and her best friend is murdered by the meanest daddy on Earth. Life in The Hollow isn’t great. But Lacy has one advantage — she’s been befriended by a semi-organic, semi-robot who works with her to cure her parents. He wants something in exchange, though. It’s up to her to save the Universe.

To prepare Lacy for her coming task, she is being schooled daily via direct downloads into her brain. Some of these courses tell her how to apply magic to resolve everyday problems much more pressing to her than a universe in big trouble, like those at home and at school. She doesn’t mind saving the universe, but her own family and friends come first.

Will Lacy Dawn’s predisposition, education, and magic be enough for her to save the Universe, Earth, and, most importantly, protect her own family?

Rarity from the Hollow is adult literary science fiction filled with tragedy, comedy and satire. It is a children’s story for adults, not for the prudish, faint of heart, or easily offended.

Robert Eggleton’s humorous science fantasy follows in the steps of Douglas Adams, Tom Holt and Terry Pratchett.

The most recent review for the book

Lacy Dawn is a gifted ten-year-old human girl with a dysfunctional family, an android boyfriend and a difficult life. She lives in a place called the Hollow where she converses with the trees and with her best friend’s ghost. Lacy has witnessed many traumatic events in her young life; her father is a veteran of war with severe PTSD, her best friend was a victim of various types of abuse and her mother suffers from depression. She’s got one thing going for her though: she’s going to save the universe.

I must say that this book is unlike any other story I’ve ever read. It’s unique in so many ways! It’s the first time I’ve read an adult novel that was written from a child’s perspective. In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever even heard of another! We also get to see into the thoughts of other characters like Dwayne (her father), Jenny (her mother), DotCom (her android boyfriend) and even their dog, Brownie! It’s super neat.

There are a lot of touchy subjects that are brought up in this novel such as violence, substance abuse, sexual abuse, and self-harm but the use of satire and the interesting narrative help keep things less negative and more on the lighter side.

I really enjoyed reading Rarity from the Hollow. It’s so different and so well-written. I also love that it creates awareness in readers about mental health and different types of abuse and that it’s told in a way that isn’t too heavy. There wasn’t a single dull moment and I would highly recommend it to anyone who is looking for something out of the ordinary.

I give this novel 5 out of 5!

Read all the reviews and buy the book:

Other buy links

Connect to Robert Eggleton via his website:

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you will explore these authors and their books further. Thanks Sally


Smorgasbord Weekly Round Up – FREE book, Invitation to a Party and brilliant writers.

Welcome to the weekly round up and a reminder that What’s in a Name Volume one is FREE until midnight tonight. I am not part of the Kindle family although all my books are formated to be read on Kindles, Nooks and any other devices. So I don’t do the Kindle select promotions. However, most of you know we well enough to email me and that your information is safe.

About the stories

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 book is available in Mobi (Kindle) Epub (other devices) and pdf for those of you without a reader.

Just email me on and I will whisk a copy over to you. I appreciate that many of you have TBRs that rival the Leaning Tower of Pisa… but that is okay and I also have no expectation of a review… unless you really want to!

You can read a number of reviews for the book:

and the latest review by Paul Andruss which is a story too:

End of Summer Party – August 26th – 28th – all welcome.

I will be roasting showcasing, those bloggers who have been with me since I began Smorgasbord four years ago.. and apart from these guests, I am inviting everyone to chip in with their details in the comments. I have some food and drink (virtually no calories) and there will be some music. I hope you will be able to pop in .

My secretary Mavis has reminded me that it is time to get on with the round up of the week’s posts that you might have missed.

I am of course very grateful to my guests this week who have provided us with entertaining and interesting posts. Thanks to Anne Casey, Julie Lawford and Carol Taylor who will be with us through the summer and beyond I hope.

William Price King is still on his summer break but I have been sharing a previous series that proved very popular the first time around.. Tony Bennett the ultimate performer.

Guest post from poet and song writer Anne Casey talking about the path to the publication of her debut poetry collection. Including her published work in the Irish Times.

Julie Lawford continues her summer of lifestyle articles with her top ten tips for maintaining your weight loss.

I was delighted to welcome Carol Taylor to the blog for the first of a collaborative series on my top healthy foods with some wonderful recipes from Carol.. This week delicious ways to prepare the king of fish.. salmon.

Milestones along the way by Geoff Cronin

I have posted another one of my entertainment reviews and this time for King Arthur: Legend of the Sword….

Book Promotion

For the next 12 weeks I am guest posting with a number of fantastic bloggers as part of the Odd Jobs and Characters, What’s in a Name launch series. I am posting the first three and then this Friday, Debby Gies is hosting the first of the guest appearances.. By all accounts she has added some Debby specials to the post so I hope you will head over and check it out.

This week was part one of my adventures as a dental nurse back in the late 1960s…haha.

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – New on the Shelves

Cafe and Bookstore Update

Air Your Promotions

Smorgasbord Short story

Smorgasbord Blogger Daily

Weekly image and Haiku

Humour and afternoon videos

Thank you for all your support and generosity in sharing.. Enjoy the rest of the weekend and hope you will visit again next week.



Smorgasbord Book Promotion – Air Your Reviews – Janice Spina, Gigi Sedlmayer and Sally Cronin

Welcome to another post where you can showcase your latest reviews. I do try to catch your reviews but it does help if you let me know by emailing sally.cronin@moyhill. I am happy to share your news every four to six weeks to keep you in the spotlight.

The first author with a review today is Janice Spina for book five of her Davey and Derek, Junior Detectives series – The Case of the Sad Mischievous Ghost

About The Case of the Sad Mischievous Ghost

Twins Davey and Derek Donato are enlisted by two new characters, Abby and her cousin Holly, to assist them in finding and capturing the spooky beings that haunt their house.

When the boys visit Abby’s house they discover that this old Victorian holds many secrets and shocking revelations.

Davey and Derek soon find that they need the assistance of their Great Aunt Gigi to handle these mischievous phantoms.

The most recent review on Amazon

Once again, Davey and Derek are off on an adventure to solve a mystery. These two young detectives are on the trail of ghosts that are living in their friend Abby’s house. Abby and her cousin Holly are school mates of Davey and Derek and have more interest in them than just finding the ghosts. When they visit Abby’s home, a large old Victorian house, they discover the house holds secrets even Abby’s parents didn’t know about. Of course, once again, they enlist their Great Aunt Gigi to help them.

This was once again another delightful middle grade book in the Davey & Derek Junior Detectives Series. Davey and Derek and their friends are delightful children who are respectful and considerate of others, but who don’t hesitate to do a bit of sleuthing under the nose of Abby’s parents.

As with the other books in this series, The Case of the Sad Mischievous Ghost is well written and meets the author’s criteria for instilling the love of reading in children.

I highly recommend The Case of the Sad Mischievous Ghost to all middle graders and to their parents. This would be a wonderful book to share, with parents taking a turn reading aloud.

This book was a gift from the author. I received no compensation for my honest review.

Read the reviews and buy the book:

Also by Janice Spina

Discover all of Janice Spina’s books, read the reviews and buy:

Find more reviews and follow Janice on Goodreads:

Connect to Janice via her website:

Another children’s author whose books receive excellent reviews continously is Gigi Sedlmayer and here is the latest for the first in the Talon Series – Come Fly With Me.

About Come Fly With Me

The adventure of a young girl will captivate your attention in this beautiful book. The words soar off the page and into your heart as you read this imaginative story.

Enjoy seeing the family dynamic from the first moment with her brother, to the gentle times with her mom, and the exciting scenes with her father.

A young girl, Matica, is jealous of her brother, Aiken’s ability to have friends. But Matica’s ability to form friendships is extraordinary. The trust and camaraderie between Matica and the condors is truly wonderful.

The way the author revealed each situation is fun to read and it made one anxious to see what’s next. Acceptance was eloquently woven into the story without being blatant. And the other thing I learned was that when certain things happen, you don’t always know why and just maybe something goodwill come of it.

Talon, Come Fly With Me is not only magical but inspiring. The author is expressive every step of the way and paint such vivid pictures with her words.

The most recent review on Amazon

This short story connects immediately to kids with its conversational tone. Matica is a girl who has grown up to be 9 years of age but physically is small. This leads her to feel isolated in her immediate circle. To add to the complexity, her parents – missionaries – relocate from Australia to South America to stay among the Indians.

Matica comes in contact with a pair of Condors – majestic birds which are close to extinction. She manages to develop a close bond with the birds and helps them through their travails when poachers try stealing their egg. In this attempt, Matica gets a huge round of admiration from the local Indians and is invited to various schools to share her story.

This narrative is a great example of story telling where the reader can bond with the main characters and get to understand issues like environment, conservation and diversity.

Full Disclosure : I had been provided a copy of the book by the author for an unconditional review (and I am glad I got to read her work)

There are 128 reviews for Come Fly With Me for you too browse and to buy the book:

Also by Gigi Sedlmayer

Read all the reviews and buy the books:

Read more reviews and follow Gigi on Goodreads:

Connect to Gigi via her new website:

And finally I am going to slip one of my latest review into the pile for Sam, A Shaggy Dog Story.

About Sam, A Shaggy Dog Story

The true story of Sam, a rough collie, written from his perspective. A tribute to a true friend and a genuine family member.

Millions of families around the World believe that their pet, dog or cat is the most intelligent, beautiful and loyal friend that anyone could have. And they are absolutely right.
From the first moment that I met Sam, when he was just three weeks old, his personality and charm shone from his button eyes. Like many pet owners, we were convinced he understood every word we spoke and he actually could say one or two himself. Rather than tell his story from our perspective I have given him a voice and let him tell his own.
I can only imagine what he really thought about his two and four-legged friends but I do hope he loved us as much as we adored him and the time he spent with us shining brightly in our lives.
If only our pets could talk how much richer the world would be, and funnier.

The most recent review on Amazon

When I read a book, I prepare for my review of it by highlighting the parts that I will want to quote in my review, ie. the sentences that are the touchpoints, or witty dialogue, the memorable moments, and lines that are the heart of the book. As I prepared to review Sam, I realized that I had highlighted the entire book. So many wonderful moments, funny stories, heartwarming scenes, and plenty of love are contained in this dog’s memoir.

Sam relates how he came as a young pup to live with Sally and David, in a lovely place near a beach in Ireland. Sam describes the large garden where he romps, his own splashing pool, his sun lounger, his rambles on the beach with his owners. Sam appreciates all this, but most of all he loves his pack and does his best to be a positive and helpful member of the pack. His only complaint is that he is never given enough cheese and sausages! (We hear you, Sam!)

Sam has many human and cat and dog friends. Sam and Sally’s adventures with Henry the cat, and his babies is quite amazing and touching. His Sally can speak Cat and Sam learns this language, too, along with a useful repertoire of words that he understands and words that he can say! He is also a very good listener.

Sam seems to be the typical smart, mature, only child. He is well-traveled (over 50,000 miles and several countries!) and interested and engaged in his world. As Sam writes, “There is no doubt that my pack could not do without me.” Adults, children, and worldly dogs and cats like Sam, will enjoy reading or hearing this lovely story. Highly recommend.

Read the reviews and buy the book:

Other books by Sally Cronin

Read all the reviews and buy the books:

Read more reviews and follow Sally on Goodreads:

Thank you for dropping by today and I hope you enjoyed the selection. Thanks Sally

Smorgasbord Book Promotion – Air Your Reviews – Carmen Stefanescu and Patricia K. Salamone

Welcome to the first of the book review posts for the week and our first author celebrating is Carmen Stefanescu with Dracula’s Prodigy.

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?

The most recent review for Dracula’s Prodigy

An Engrossing Read  on August 6, 2017

A complex story that focus on a descendant of the infamous Vlad the Impaler (Count Dracula) that is intricately imagined and beautifully told. Linda Cartwright has no idea who the strange man in her dreams is, nor does she understand how the life she once imagined with her husband, Bill, has turned into a nightmare for her and her young daughter.

Fleeing a loveless marriage, Linda discovers courage she never realized she had, and an ancestral history rife with betrayals, revenge, and eternal devotion. Rich with details of both past and present, Carmen Stefanescu continues the story she began in Dracula’s Mistress, but offers a unique twist by placing her heroine in modern times.

I found myself caught up in the emotion of the central characters and a mystery that transcends centuries. The author’s writing flows beautifully, both visual and compelling, keeping the reader turning pages and racing to the conclusion. If you enjoy history and myth with a twinge of the paranormal, woven into a contemporary setting, this is a story you don’t want to miss.

Read the reviews and buy the book:

Also by Carmen Stefanescu

Find out more about Carmen’s books and other published work:

Connect to Carmen via her blog:

My next reviews are for Patricia K Salamone and her book The Italian Thing which shares the trip that she and her husband took to meet his Italian relatives.

About The Italian Thing

Join me in my hilarious recount of how I explored my heritage during a more-than-memorable trip to Sicily. I detail our adventures and misadventures as my husband and I visited our relatives in Naro. I share how we got to know the locals, their customs and lifestyle, and how everyone seemed to think that “everything will be fine” no matter what troubles they were in. During those weeks, we went through culture shock despite the fact that we are both Italian. In the end, it was “the Italian thing” in all of us that made ours an unforgettable trip! *Includes 26 original photos!

The most recent reviews on Amazon

I have always wanted to visit Italy, such a timeless and beautiful country with so many interesting places to visit.

Reading “The Italian Thing” will be like going there and seeing the country through someone else’s eyes, I thought, expecting to find a country I was already familiar with. I was looking forward to the trip of a lifetime and the book did not disappoint. It was well written, full of all the wonderful scenery and architecture I have come to expect of the country.

However “The Italian Thing” isn’t about the country, not really, it is about the people and family. About the lives they live and the glorious food they eat.
“Everything will be fine” is the Italians hilarious answer to everything, and is the key to understanding their very different way of life.

I loved the touches of humour, the very descriptive narrative, and the loving but feisty relationship between Pat and Mike. Who were out of their depth, and up to their eyes in food of every delicious description. How they came home weighing less than before is remarkable!

Everything will be fine”, they all said, and of course it was. A light hearted and most amusing account of an Italian America couple’s holiday to Naro, Italy. Patricia and Mike travel from Florida in the USA to experience life with Mike’s relatives. They are Italian so it will be a doddle, they think. This book is a heart warming account of how very different life proves to be on the other side of the pond and how this couple come to realise that being an Italian in Italy is a little different from being an American of Italian extraction.

They are welcomed, in what I came to think of as “true Italian style”, by their extended family as they all gathered for one fantastic meal after another to celebrate their American relatives visit to the continent. Mike and Patricia learn how to take a hand shower in the bath and how to mop up the bathroom from top to bottom afterwards, are introduced to the delicious joys of homemade bread, still warm from the oven and Patricia gets an opportunity to show off her own cooking skills when she make a tomato based sauce for a family event. Patricia also learns to drive like a real Italian and only scrapes the car once during the entire holiday. In addition to the delightful people, Patricia and Mike are introduced to the delights of Italian pastries, delicious food served on plastic plates and a toilet facility with no door.

I read this book with my son, Michael, aged eleven, while my older son, Gregory, aged fourteen, listened. Michael was completely taken with the story and chose this book as the subject of his second term book review for school. He has been walking around ever since we read it telling me that everything, from not brushing his teeth to gobbling all the left overs is “the Italian thing!”. A truly worthwhile read for everyone and anyone who enjoys life and a jolly good laugh.

Read the reviews and buy the book:

Read other reviews on Goodreads:

Connect to Patricia and enjoy her fiction series:

Thanks for dropping in today and please spread the news about these talented writers and their new reviews. Sally



Smorgasbord Book Promotion – Air Your Reviews – Balroop Singh, C.S. Boyack and Lindy Rorke

Welcome to August.. doesn’t time fly when you are enjoying yourself…  some authors today who have been receiving some great reviews for their work and whilst I am not going to feature mine her today I have to thank Judy E. Martin for her review for Just an Odd Job Girl and Robbie Cheadle for reviews for Sam, A Shaggy Dog Story and What’s in a Name Volume One. It was like Christmas last week and it is a reminder if ever we read a book and enjoy and don’t review, how much pleasure we are denying a writer.

First a new review for Balroop Singh and her book Allow Yourself to be a Better Person.

About Allow Yourself to be a Better Person

Do you think you are a good person? Would you like to meet your better self? Welcome to the vast vistas that this book unravels before you by highlighting the shaded areas that could never get your attention.

Enhancement of personality is a long process, which starts only when we acknowledge the need for it. Often we detest looking at our imperfections and if somebody is professionally successful, the thought doesn’t even strike.

This book enlightens you about the goodness, which lies dormant within us till we make an effort to explore it. It exhorts you to introspect and accept natural human failings. It guides you towards the metamorphosis that could make you an endearing personality.

The most recent review for the book on Goodreads

Lisa Thomson rated it 5 Stars on July 14th.

At first, I thought; “but I’m already a pretty good person, aside from a few (okay, many) flaws…I’ve learned so many lessons…what more must I learn?”

Truth is, we all have room for improvement. Balroop takes you through every aspect of becoming your best self by tackling arrogance, anger, fear, and inspiration and hope to name a few topics. With simple suggestions, and my favorite, her personal stories, Balroop takes you through each section with suggestions and acronyms to assist you in becoming your best self. Her advice is sage.

I recommend this book to anyone going through challenges, changes in life, including divorce

Read the reviews and buy the book:

Also by Balroop Singh

Read the reviews and buy the books:

Read more reviews and follow Balroop on Goodreads:

Connect to Balroop Singh via her blog:

The next review is for the recently published short story collection The Enhanced League by C.S. Boyack.

About the Enhanced League

The Enhanced league is a collection of short stories and anthems centered around a year in a fictional baseball league. It has a slight science fiction background. This league has a lot more pomp than you might be used to, and nobody seems to care if the players use performance enhancing drugs.

Stories involve existing heroes, up and comers, and falling stars. While there are the obvious stories that take place on the field of play, there are also human interest stories that take place around the baseball gyrations. These stories involve scouting, trades, ruthless business decisions, and even relationships.

I enjoyed researching and bringing you The Enhanced League, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. — CB

The most recent review for The Enhanced League

This book of short stories and snippets was an enjoyable read. I flew from Jacksonville to Chicago and, factoring in the Atlanta weather delays, I read the entire book on my trip. The pages flew by as if they were on steroids.

The theme of the book revolves around a fictional baseball league where anything goes in terms of steroids and technology. Boyack is masterful at weaving tales around this league from the point of view of a washed up conventional baseball player that gets a second chance, a group of female umpires and their struggles with gaining credibility despite exploitation in the league.

The thing that struck me the most was the author’s ability to write effective action during the baseball games. He had me on the edge of my seat pulling for the teams and players as I read his accounts of the games. Baseball is not the most action-packed sport, but the exciting moments are without parallel. I suspect that C.S. Boyack is a fan of the game as he narrated the snippets of action with loving detail.

This book reads like a loosely stitched together novel more than a collection of short stories. Throughout the book, Boyack pulls the stitching tighter and tighter until it all makes sense.

It was a great read that I was sorry to see end so quickly.

Read the other reviews and buy The Enhanced League:

A selection of books by C.S. Boyack

 Read all the reviews and buy the books:

Read more reviews and follow C.S. Boyack on Goodreads:

Connect with Craig via his blog:

The last review is for The Rorkes Drift North, a memoir by Lindy Rorke set in Rhodesia before it became Zimbabwe.

About the book

This entertaining memoir is set in Gatooma (Kadoma) during the time the country Zimbabwe was still known as Rhodesia. It is largely an account of a family history that touches on the lives of so many others and their memories. The book will be of interest to anyone who has lived in or loved Africa.

The story unfolds to reveal how the author’s parents built a farm and a business from crown land with only a dirt track leading through it. Interwoven in their lives between the successes and failures of the farm, their children arrive, bringing a whole new dimension to family life. The characters of the extended family further enrich the story along with intriguing neighbours who bring in even more colour and contrast to the unfolding picture.

The challenges the author’s parents faced were daunting. Through sheer determination, hard work, ingenuity, long hours and many years, they built one of the finest farms in the area. Rhodesia was at the time a paradise and this book is a valuable record of history as a dramatisation and a true slice of life as it once was. There are glimpses of real-life conditions within these telling pages of the exploits of the Rorke family.

The most recent review for the book

Nostalgic Read  on July 19, 2017

This entertaining memoir is set in Gatooma (Kadoma) during the time the country Zimbabwe was still known as Rhodesia. It is largely an account of a family history that touches on the lives of so many others and their memories.

The book will be of interest to anyone who has lived in or loved Africa. The story unfolds to reveal how the author’s parents built a farm and a business from crown land with only a dirt track leading through it. Interwoven in their lives between the successes and failures of the farm, their children arrive, bringing a whole new dimension to family life. The characters of the extended family further enrich the story along with intriguing neighbours who bring in even more colour and contrast to the unfolding picture.

The challenges the author’s parents faced were daunting. Through sheer determination, hard work, ingenuity, long hours and many years, they built one of the finest farms in the area.

Rhodesia was at the time a paradise and this book is a valuable record of history as a dramatisation and a true slice of life as it once was. There are glimpses of real-life conditions within these telling pages of the exploits of the Rorke family.

The book is a great memoir for someone who never visit Rhodesia and has little knowledge of it. The descriptions in the book are beautiful and clearly paints an image of how beautiful the country is. The book itself is in a good chronological order which made it an easy story to read through. There is nothing worse than a memoir with no order. It was a refreshing read that takes you through generations of the Rorke family as they establish themselves; have children and build up their farm.

The things that I enjoyed most about the book is the fact that it was so realistic. Nothing was sugar coated in the book in terms of the divide of race or class, or when things needed to be done in order to ensure the farms success – whether technically legal or not. The people in the book are amazing, and definitely worth admiring as they face each and every challenge head on in order to build a future for the family.

Read the other reviews and buy the book:

Connect to Lindy Rorke via Goodreads:

Thanks for dropping by today.. I would love to share your reviews and aim to feature authors in the Cafe and Bookstore regularly every four to six weeks. If you are not in the cafe and bookstore… you can contact me on and we can talk about how to join the 250 other authors there.

It helps me out if you can let me know when you have received a great review. If there are several at the same time…. I will always feature one here and share the others on social media.

Please help share the news of these authors and their reviews.. thanks Sally

Smorgasbord Weekly Round Up – Tony Bennett, new releases, reviews and series

Welcome to the weekly round up from blustery and very wet Wexford. Hopefully just a short reminder of the fact we are not in control of our fate or the weather and that the sun will be out again before the end of summer.

I have been at the computer most of the week getting ready for the release of my book on Friday.. more about that in the posts. But as always I have made time for one of the most important jobs of the day… reading other writer’s blogs and posting my own.

My thanks to my guests this week.. even those who are absent. William will be back in September with a new series and hopefully he is on the receiving end of better weather.

My thanks to Julie Lawford who will be making a regular weekly contribution with lifestyle posts through the summer and her previous posts can be found here.

Also this week the reposting of a very important article from author John Maberry with his story of prostate cancer and the symptoms to be aware of. He also outlines some of the treatment options.

WordPress happiness Engineers appear to have been messing around with the media settings again and I am now unable to centre multiple images which used to happen with one click… I do wish they would pay attention to the old adage.. If it ain’t broke don’t fix it. I have not wasted my breath contacting them.. after all they know best.

Anyway on with the posts you might have missed and thank you again for your contribution to keeping me motivated.

William Price King a man and his music

William is on an extended break until September and I will be repeating the popular Tony Bennett Series from 2015.

Horatio Grin.

Reminder that you can receive Fairies the Hidden History by Horation Grin (Paul Andruss) FREE as an Epub or pdf.

The Black Bitch and other Tales by Geoff Cronin

The last in the serialisation of The Black Bitch with Geoff’s last book beginning next weekend.

A shaggy dog story from Geoff about Pavarotti and one his most devoted fans.

Guest Posts

John Maberry shares his experiences with prostate cancer, the symptoms and the treatments.

Julie Lawford shares how positive affirmations can bring huge benefits physically and mentally.

Book Promotions.

I have just released Volume Two of What’s in a Name? in Ebook with the combined print version available in a few weeks.

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore Update

New on the Shelves

Air Your Reviews

Smorgasbord Reblog posts.

An important message from D.G. Kaye… Debbie Gies on emotional bullying that can as damaging as any other.

The first of two posts by Paul Andruss on his own site on the history and myths surrounding the skilled craft of weaving.

Thomas the Rhymer Paul Andruss

Blogger Daily


Short Stories

Smorgasbord Invitation Entertainment Review – Movie Dunkirk

A new series with reviews for the small and cinema screens.


Thank you for popping in today and for your support during the week.. All of which is very much appreciated.



Smorgasbord Invitation -Air You Reviews – #Throwback Thursday – Gigi Sedlmayer, Pamela S. Wight and Sally Cronin

Welcome to the Thursday edition of Air Your Reviews when I take a look at an author’s earlier books and give them a boost.

First is children’s author Gigi Sedlmayer and her Talon Series of books.  The review from 1st July 2017  is for book two in the series On the Wing. The book has already received over 50 positive reviews.

About On The Wing

What Matica has dreamed ever since she first befriended the condors is actually happening.
And now the adventures begin.

Finally accepting Matica into their community because of an incredible event, the people from the village love seeing her with Talon and demand she tell them about her adventures with the condors.

Matica is now happy to be small because she can do what she has always dreamed of – fly. She is accepted and loved, and because she is so small can have incredible adventures with her beloved Talon. In the meantime, her friendship with Amos continues to grow…
In this book, she has scores of adventures and near disasters with Talon.
The most recent review for On the Wing.

This exciting tale is the second part of a series of books about a ten-year-old sandy-blonde girl by the name of Matica who has a special condition that has stunted her growth, making her remain at the height level of a toddler. She is special in this book because of her remarkable relationship with a family of condors that live in the mountains nearby her home in Peru, South America. She and her parents Mira (mom), Crayn (dad), and younger brother Aikon are originally from Australia but moved to Peru due to Crayn’s occupation. In part one of this series, Matica was able to save an egg of two adult condors who was being eyed by a bunch of ruthless poachers. From this saved “egg” came a dear friend, Talon, whom which this series of books are about.

Now in this book, Matica had a dream that she was able to fly on Talon’s back across the Andes Mountains of Peru, where she was then abruptly dropped with Talon not making an attempt to help her at all. She woke up in time and proceeded to relay her nightmare to Aikon and her parents who took it lightly except that Mira thought she should be careful because you never know… This book is different from part one in that it introduces a bunch of new characters all eager to hear about Matica’s relationship with Talon as well as seeing her fly on his back. We have to consider the fact that this is something “extraordinary” and that no one has ever flown on the back of a bird in the skies or been recorded down in the history of the world. (I think.) There is a plot twist here where one of these new characters resents Matica because he had someone dear to him with her condition abandoned due to thoughts that this beloved person was of no use to society anymore.

I read this book with anticipation waiting for that lesson that part one had. I felt that the same moral was being played out here where Matica once again proved to her surrounding community that her disability and her friendship with Talon tells all those who have a friend or family member with her condition to embrace that person because they might come in handy someday. And all through the book, the Peru Indians were very thankful and adamant to listen to Matica’s tales of her friendship with these condors especially the title character, Talon. It gave them a reason to embrace these birds, Matica’s condors, knowing that they have a valid place in their environment and must be protected at all costs from poachers and all those who threaten to hunt them down for trading and consumption purposes.

I recommend this book to grandparents and parents who are looking for a book for that special, dear bookworm in their families. It will instill in him or her a sense of duty to look out for our friends in nature and teach him or her also the values of love, compassion, friendship and leadership. I also recommend this book to teachers who are searching for titles to add to their classroom libraries. Trust me, your students will enjoy this tale at story-time because the notion of a disabled girl befriending a bird (just like with a dog or a cat or a turtle) and showing it all of her tender love and care is something very kind and sweet that they can relate to. So what are you waiting for? Order this dear today! You will get your money’s worth!

Read some of the other great reviews and buy the book:

Also by Gigi Sedlmayer

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My next author with a recent review for her first book is Pamela S. Wight with her fast-paced The Right Wrong Man.


About The Right Wrong Man

Meredith Powers’ career as a medical editor seems safe enough as she searches for love with the right man. But she is pulled suddenly from her serene world in Boston to one of intrigue, kidnapping, and murder in the Caribbean.

Meredith’s simple life becomes terribly complicated when she works with an author who drags her into a drug heist. The reappearance of her ex-boyfriend, the D.E.A. agent, and the stunning response from her current accountant boyfriend all lead to complications, danger, and more than a few questions.

Meredith wonders if she really knows the people who surround her in her daily life. Her parents, her best friends, her boss, even her lover. She discovers that almost everyone holds secrets, and the unearthing of those cover-ups lead to mystery and danger that changes everything, and everyone, she thought she knew.

One of the recent reviews for the book

The first pages of this thriller romance were not particularly fast-paced, and I thought I would be in for a slow, but sweet upbeat romance flavored with a thin mystery. Boy, was I wrong. The book speeded up, faster and faster, until by the time I was about 1/3 of the way in, I became so engrossed I almost missed an appointment. When I got back from my appointment, I decided to set everything else aside and finish the book because I was obsessed with discovering what was happening to the protagonist, Meredith, a medical book editor, and which–if any–of the three mysterious and sexy men involved on one side or another of an illegal drug scheme she would choose as her true love. This books features lots of adventure, suspense, and mystery.

Read more of the many excellent reviews and buy the book:

Also by Pamela S.Wight








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Last but not least I would like to share a terrific review from Deborah Bowman for my What’s in a Name short story collection Volume One.

About What’s in a Name Volume One.

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

The most recent review for the book on Goodreads

Deborah Bowman rated it it was amazing – Recommends it for: EVERYONE!

Little slices of history (x2 generations approximately), but it’s so hard not to give spoilers when these anecdotes, family stories, and clips of emotion make you cry tears of happiness and sadness, literally only pages apart.

What’s in a name? Everything … your identity, your life, your dreams, desires, failures and triumphs. It’s all that you are or could have been. It’s inspirational, deep in meaning, and relates to every heart, life, and soul.

I took notes in the book, meaning to share, but reading it unawares is the only way to shed the light of day … or night on an epiphany of release, glory with each story, mind tingling and bell ringing. All I can strive to thrive in this heartfelt book is felt in but two teasers…Annie and Clive, mere drops of expression, packed with life’s lessons. That’s the reason to keep this unusual genre alive!

Congrats and sincere thanks to Sally Cronin … a masterpiece.

You can read all the reviews and buy the book:

And on Goodreads:

My other books

All my books can be found at

My new book is out at midnight tonight in a special post…. What’s in a Name Volume Two….It is very pink!

Thank you for dropping by today and if you could share around the universe that would be terrific.. thanks Sally

Smorgasbord Book Promotion – Air Your Reviews – Jason B. Ladd and Deanie Humphrys- Dunne

Welcome to the celebration of reviews. Each review that you receive is another acknowledgement that a reader has enjoyed your book. Accepted there will be times when that review is slightly more critical that we had hoped but that too is useful as we grow as writers.

I would love to hear about your reviews for your work and I aim to promote authors regularly every four weeks or so. With over 250 authors in the Cafe and Bookstore I may have to add another promotional post each week but that is a good thing. Email me on

My first author with a huge influx of reviews is Jason B. Ladd whose recently published guide to getting substantial reviews for your work Book Review Banzai, has proven his method works. Considering the book was only published in June it has certainly received an impressive amount of feedback.

About Book Review Banzai

Indie author and book review expert Jason B. Ladd reveals the secret to scoring book reviews on Amazon as an unknown author.

Using a strategic mix of automation and personalization, Book Review Banzai is helping authors get the reviews they so desperately need in today’s crowded publishing market-place.

This high integrity system is a laser-focused approach that teaches authors not only how to effectively get book reviews on Amazon, but how to get them in quantities that matter.

Using a combination of free web tools and effective marketing tactics, this 5-step technique saves authors time and frustration by walking them through a process that begins with a Google Search and ends with an Amazon ebook page full of reviews.

If you’re publishing a book on Amazon, you must learn how to market your book. Specifically, you must learn how to get book reviews on Amazon.

If you’re serious about getting your published work into the hands of reviewers and readers, if you want to finally book that BookBub slot, if you’re ready to unlock your book’s full potential, then you need this concise, competent guide on how to get book reviews on Amazon!

One of the 105 reviews so far…..


As an indie author, how do you get your book into the hands of as many people as possible? With book reviews. This book will show you how to use a laser-focused, in-depth technique to accomplish that one aspect of your book promotion: getting those coveted reviews. And you don’t have to be a first-time author to use the technique; it will work for any author who wants to increase their number of reviews.

Although written with humor and levity, the author is very sincere and gives examples from his personal experience. Aside from his priceless advice on how to garner reviews for your book, he also gives us a lesson on how to write a book: with no editing errors, hyperlinked chapters, footnotes, a review request at the end, e-course signup link, email signup link, links to other books by the author, and testimonials. Flawless!

Be warned, this system is not an easy fix; you will need to put in some effort. But, tell you what … it worked on me. I replied to Jason’s review request email in less than five hours!

Don’t forget to check out the e-course! As the author states, “I want to make it even easier. I want to show you exactly how to do it all click by click. That’s what I’ve done in the Book Review Banzai e-course. The e-course is loaded with content and bonuses designed to make your banzai as easy and successful as possible. Instructional videos. Swipe copy. Email templates. Resource guides. Checklists. It’s all included in the e-course.”

I received this book in return for an honest review.

Read some of the other reviews and buy the book:

Also by Jason B. Ladd

Read the reviews and buy both books:

Connect to Jason via his website:

My next author with some wonderful reviews for her memoir My Life at Sweetbriar : A Life Changed by Horses, is Deanie Humphrys-Dunne.

About My Life at Sweetbriar

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?

The latest reviews for My Life at Sweetbriar.

Thank you, Deanie, for writing such an inspirational message to children. The style is delightful, teaching lessons on owning a horse and on riding and jumping plus explaining terms as you go along. Definitions are woven into the story seamlessly. Along the way, you can’t miss the lessons in family love, encouragement and loyalty. The last chapter brings this all together with encouraging each child to persevere through all of life’s trial and tribulations.

The pictures of the farm, you and the horses help the reader remember this is not a novel, but a true story of someone who overcame great odds. Your teacher mode came out with the questions and answers at the end. All aspects were well thought out and brought together so well. I highly recommend “My Life at Sweetbrier: A Life Changed by Horses”

I loved the writing style of the author. She takes you through her life and story in beautiful prose. You do not even realize that you have finished the story.
This book is inspirational for kids and adults loving children books.
Get your copy!

Read all the reviews and buy the book:

Also by Deanie Humphrys-Dunne

Read all the reviews and buy the books:

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Thank you very much for dropping in today and it would be great if you could share the news of these reviews.  Thanks Sally

Smorgasbord Book Promotion – Air Your Reviews – Throwback Thursday – Carol Balawyder and Christine Campbell

A slightly different theme to the Thursday edition of Air Your Reviews as I shall be featuring earlier books of authors in the Cafe and Bookstore with one of their reviews. We tend to focus on the current books we have written but it does mean that others do not get the attention they still deserve.

My first author with a book that has not featured here before in its own right is one of the Getting to Mr. Right SeriesCafe Paradise by Carol Balawyder.

About the Cafe Paradise

Most of Suzy Paradise’s dreams died along with her son over twenty years ago.
One thing has re-ignited her passion for living – running her own café, which specializes in home-baked donuts. For Suzy, this is a long-cherished dream come true. Her business is starting to flounder when Donuts-A-Million, a giant chain, opens across the street from her. Her unexpected attraction to Coen Walsh, a regular customer at her café, creates more tension when she learns of his affiliation with her competitor.
Café Paradise is about Suzy’s fight to save her business in spite of the odds. Sometimes, she realizes, dreams have an expiration date and it takes just as much courage to let them go.
Along the way, she must re-define the meaning of work, family and romance so she can find her own formula for happiness.

One of the excellent reviews for the book

Do Not Read When Hungry  on December 10, 2015

Dreams are on the line in this women’s fiction novella by accomplished writer, Carol Balawyder.

Café owner, Susie Paradise realized her dream when she opened a bakery and coffee shop. But when a national donut chain opens across the street from her shop, business dives, which threatens to kill her dream and the livelihood of those on her payroll.

Month after month, her financial and business situation worsens, and she is forced to go to the bank to ask for additional capital. Denied, she has no choice but to shut down her dream. But before waving the white flag of surrender, a fairy godmother in the form of her best friend swoops in with 1) a business loan, 2) a new location in a lower rent district, 3) and loyal, appreciative customers. These actions are enough to save Susie’s dream.

One of the critical elements to saving the café was Susie’s willingness to be flexible; to see her dream in a different way. That’s one of the things I liked about this story—the dream was saved but only because the main character moved out of her own way. I know this is fiction but it’s a great life lesson for all.

Read the reviews and buy the book:

Read other reviews on Goodreads:

Also by Carol Balawyder

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Connect to Carol via her website:

My next author with a book that was released in 2015 is Christine Campbell and the first of her books in The Reluctant Detective Series : Searching for Summer

About Searching for Summer

Mirabelle’s daughter, Summer, disappears one Friday night, and Mirabelle would dearly love to rewind that day and live it differently. Instead, she is left not knowing if Summer is alive or dead, went of her own accord or was taken against her will.
Casting all other concerns aside – food, sleep, work, relationships – in her desperate need to find the answers, she takes to the streets of Edinburgh in search of Summer.
Searching along wynds snaking behind old buildings, through ancient doors and tiny spiral stairways, showing Summer’s photograph to everyone she meets in shops, museums and nightclubs, Mirabelle becomes a reluctant detective, gathering clues, trying to make sense of them in order to find her missing daughter.

One of the reviews for the book

Excellent Read  on September 15, 2015

This book has been labeled as Women’s Literature and Cozy Mystery. It encompasses the elements of both. The story is about a woman searching for her daughter, Summer. In the process of this journey, our protagonist, Mirabelle examines her own life. She lost her father at an early age and never recovered from that. Now she must cross-examine her single parenting skills to understand where she went wrong with her own child.

Mirabelle’s self-examination is painful, heart wrenching, and at time seems self-defeating. But our heroine has an inner core of strength and willingness to accept her own shortcomings. What makes this narrative so compelling is the man in her life. He is a policeman who is willing to go above and beyond his job demands to help find Summer, because of his love for Mirabelle.

There are many books where the woman is strong, tough, and proves she can survive on her own. That is simply not realistic. We humans do not live in a vacuum and survival is so much more than just existing from day to day. We all need help at stressful times in our lives; be they family, friends, or even a stranger. That is why this story is so refreshing, with its message of goodness and love offered by our fellow humans.

Read the other reviews and buy the book:

Also by Christine Campbell

Read all the reviews and buy the books:

Read more reviews and follow Christine on Goodreads:

Connect to Christine via her website:

Would you like to give one of your earlier books a bit of love?  Perhaps the first book in a series? Let me know

Smorgasbord Weekly Round Up – Opera, Film, Books, Humour and Authors who rock.

Welcome to this week’s round up of posts you might haved missed. As always my thanks to William Price King and Paul Andruss who are such huge supporters and contributors to the blog.. Also this week to Julie Lawford with a very informative posts on the challenges of being left-handed, and to Karen Ingalls, whose post shares her experiences as an ovarian cancer survivor.

I have been busy offline, finishing one project and moving onto the next. I have also been working on the plan for the blog from September onwards with some new promotional opportunities for authors and bloggers. In October the blog will be four years old and I would like to celebrate that with a week of guest posts.  I am hoping to persuade those of you who have been with me for most of those four years to share some highlights from your own blogs and the funniest moments too.  More about that later in the summer but perhaps you can get your thinking caps on now.  It is of course an opportunity to share your work and perhaps inspire others to take up this madness that is blogging.

Thank you very much for popping in and for leaving feedback and sharing the posts across your own networks.. I cannot tell you how much I appreciate that. More to come in the next week and I hope you will have the time to drop in again.

Time to get on with the posts from the week…

William Price King Meets Some legends

We look at some of the music from the films of Barbra Streisand in the 1980s and 1990s.

Smorgasbord Writer in Residence Paul Andruss

This week Paul takes us back through the centuries to discover the origins of our modern day opera including some of the less highbrow aspects of this form of entertainment.

Thomas the Rhymer

The Black Bitch and other Tales by Geoff Cronin

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore Update

Book and blog marketing

A reminder of how you can join the other authors on the shelves of the Cafe and Bookstore

Book promotion on Twitter

Taking advantage of book promotion opportunities

My review of No More Mulberries by Mary Smith

Air Your Reviews

Short Stories



Latest research in to the use of Vitamin C in an effective treatment for sepsis

Guest post by Julie Lawford on the challenges of being left-handed.

Guest post by Karen Ingalls, Ovarian cancer survivor.

Top to Toe – The Female Reproductive System



Thank you again and hope to see you next week.. Enjoy your sunday.. Sally