Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Meet the Authors – #Romance Ritu Bhathal, #YAMystery Karen Demers Dowdall, #Paranormal S.A. Harris,


There are over 150 authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and I wanted to keep it to key pieces of information such as buying links, recent review, website and covers. However, I know that readers also like to know more about the background of authors.

In this series during June and July I will share the bios of all the authors in the cafe in a random selection. I hope that this will introduce you to the authors in more depth and encourage you to check out their books and follow them on their blog and Twitter.

Meet Ritu Bhathal

Ritu was born in Birmingham in the mid-1970’s to migrant parents, hailing from Kenya but with Indian origin. This colourful background has been a constant source of inspiration to her.

From childhood, she always enjoyed reading. This love of books is mostly credited to her mother. The joy of reading spurred her on to become creative in her own writing, from fiction to poetry. Winning little writing competitions at school and locally gave her the encouragement to continue writing.

As a wife, mother, daughter, sister, and teacher, she has drawn on inspiration from many avenues to create the poems that she writes.

A qualified teacher, having studied at Kingston University, she now deals with classes of children as a sideline to her writing!

Ritu also writes a blog, a mixture of life and creativity, thoughts and opinions, which was recently awarded The Best Overall Blog Award at the Annual Bloggers Bash Awards in 2017.

Ritu is happily married and living in Kent, with her Hubby Dearest, and two children, not forgetting the furbaby Sonu Singh.

Books by Ritu Bhathal

One of the recent reviews for Marriage Unarranged

ElizabethC 5.0 out of 5 stars An intriguing romance read.  Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 16 June 2020

If you are looking for a wonderful romance read full of flavour and contrast, then take a look at this book. The characters are beautifully written and you are transported into their world at every turn of the page. This is a love story with lots of twists and turns, heartbreak, unfaithful relationships and ultimately, happiness. The story is rich in culture, heritage and family expectations. Perfect for those who love a romantic novel to add to their bookshelf.

Ritu Bhathal, Buy: Amazon UK – andAmazon US- Blog: Ritu Bhathal WordPress Follow Ritu: Goodreads – Twitter: @RituBhathal

Meet Karen Demers Dowdall

Karen Demers Dowdall PhD, MSN, BSN, was born in Hartford, Connecticut, and spent her elementary-grade school years in the small farming community of Salmon Brook, settled in 1680 by a stalwart group of Europeans. She grew up exploring its lush and dark forest preserve, swimming in Salmon Brook with a plethora of the unexplained, exploring Rock Fall Caves, and ice-skating on a “haunted” pond in winter.

Karen has traveled abroad and lived in the Republic of China, Saudi Arabia, and England. Living overseas opened to her, a vista of cultures, historical vistas, and led her to believe that all cultures have storytellers that reveal all their hopes and dreams through vivid fantasy fictions, poetry, short stories, and dramatic written presentations throughout their culture history.

Karen has always written poems and short stories, and now has three novels that represent fantasy, coming of age, and a dark mystery.

Books by  Karen Demers Dowdall.

A recent review for Garrett’s Bones

L. Carmichael 5.0 out of 5 stars Paranormal / Cousins / Murder / YA Suspense  Reviewed in the United States on February 3, 2020

Garrett’s Bones is a young adult mystery with paranormal elements written by Karen DeMers Dowdall. I’ve followed the author’s blog and read another of her books in the past, so when this one became available, I added it to my reading list. As I came to love in her first book, the descriptions of the characters and the setting are wonderful, almost leaping off the page as you quickly turn each one to find out what’s going on.

In some ways, this felt a bit like a Nancy Drew book. The teens in this one are a little older than Nancy and her cohorts, and the time periods might be slightly different (this takes place in the 1960s), but there is a similar storytelling approach and mindset. Dowdall creates beauty in her scenes by helping readers visualize all of the components, across many of our senses. Adding suspense and thrills, the hint of romance, a strong sense of right and wrong… it’s woven well and tells a story about two very likable characters, Garrett and Anna.

The title caught me right away. Was Garrett alive or dead? As quickly as the plot develops, we find out what the title references. A fellow teen girl has disappeared, and no one seems to know how to find her. Garrett and Anna, step-cousins, set out to find her. You can tell there’s a love growing between them, but they won’t act on it… in fact, others enter the picture and complicate a relationship from brewing. When Garrett and Anna find a body, it is intense, and the cops believe Garrett might’ve killed the girl. What were they thinking? What a good way to set up the conflict in this story.

Over time, another death happens. A suspect emerges. Then a second. Anna wants to explore the potential clues, but Garrett holds her back. This is a young adult novel, so Dowdall is careful to follow appropriate themes and approaches… especially since it’s setting is from over fifty years ago. When the paranormal aspects (minor) are introduced, we feel an almost spiritual connection to the Native American tribe member who appears to help at various time. Something is amiss in this town, and we can’t help but wonder if it’s supernatural or real. Why don’t the cops see it?

Anna is restless. I love her character. Garrett is protective, perhaps moreso because they’ve grown up together as friends and step-cousins (second marriage for a parent). We want them to cling to one another, it’s so obvious — Dowdall presents a vibrancy between them, but we also know it must be difficult in their time period and location. Especially when a friend seems to be super connected to one possible suspect and a cop who we wonder if we should trust. So many angles, so many parts of this story to enjoy.

When it all comes together, I was a happy reader. Great writing. Strong themes. Clever mystery. I definitely look forward to another Dowdall book in the future. Great job!

Karen Demers Dowdall, Buy: Amazon US – AndAmazon UK – follow Karen : Goodreads –  blog:Karen Dowdall – Twitter: @karenddowdall

Meet S. A Harris

S.A.Harris is an award-winning author and family law solicitor born in Suffolk and now living and working in Norwich, Norfolk.

She won the Retreat West Crime Writer Competition in 2017. She was shortlisted for The Fresher Prize First 500 Words of a Novel Competition in 2018 and published in their anthology, Monsters, in November 2018.

Her debut novel, Haverscroft, was published on the 15th May 2019 and Longlisted for the Not the Booker Prize 2019.

She is a member of the Society of Authors.

One of the recent reviews for the book

Maple Sugar 4.0 out of 5 stars Haverscroft, psychological ghost story  Reviewed in the United States on June 30, 2019

This book has two themes, a crumbling marriage and an old fashioned ghost story. Harris is strongest at creating atmosphere and building suspense.

The story is simple, a married couple and their young twins move into a house that is haunted. But it’s not your traditional ghost here. The psychological nuances add to the story, making the reader question the protagonist and her point of view. I enjoyed the style of writing. Vivid descriptions of family life and the daily struggle to be heard and appreciated by one’s spouse, made Haverscroft a very modern spin on an old- fashioned theme. Great job for author, S.A.Harris. Twists and turns and a surprise ending made the book a truly enjoyable read.

S.A. Harris, Buy the book: Amazon UK and on: Amazon US – Follow S.A. Harris : Goodreads – Website:Sally Harris – Twitter: @salharris1

Thank you for joining me today for this series and I will be sharing another three authors and their work every weekday during June and July. It would be great if you could share. Thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Meet the Authors -#Children’s #History Barbara Ann Mojica, #Children’s Paul Noel, #Mystery Judy Penz Sheluk


There are over 150 authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and I wanted to keep it to key pieces of information such as buying links, recent review, website and covers. However, I know that readers also like to know more about the background of authors.

In this series during June and July I will share the bios of all the authors in the cafe in a random selection. I hope that this will introduce you to the authors in more depth and encourage you to check out their books and follow them on their blog and Twitter.

Meet Barbara Ann Mojica

Barbara Ann Mojica, M.A. S.A.S., S.D.A is a historian and retired educator. Her education career spans more than forty years serving as a teacher, special educator, principal, and school district administrator. Barbara writes monthly historical articles for the Columbia Insider under the banner “Passages.” Using the whimsical Little Miss History character to narrate her book series, Barbara hopes to educate, entertain and inspire children to learn about historical people and places. Little Miss History’s antics make reading nonfiction a fun-filled adventure for all ages. She firmly believes, “If you don’t know your history, you don’t know what you’re talking about.”

The Little Miss HISTORY book series has garnered more than twenty awards including B.R.A.G. Medallions, International Book Excellence Awards, International Readers’ Favorite Awards, Eric Hoffer, and Independent Author Network Awards.

A selection of books by Barbara Ann Mojica

One of the recent reviews for Intrepid Sea and Space Museum

Howard A. Fox 5.0 out of 5 stars I finally get to visit the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum  Reviewed in the United States on April 30, 2020

I had the pleasure of interviewing Barbara Ann & Victor Mojica on my podcast earlier this year.

History was always my favorite subject in school and these books brought back fond memories of places here in the US that I’ve visited. I was also reminded of places that need to go back on my must-visit list. As many times that I’ve been to New York, the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum was always left for another day. Thanks to Little Miss History, it’s back on the list.

Each book is comprised of a tour with Little Miss History and includes many unique facts. The Illustrations (created by Victor) found in the book are amazing.

The entire book series is a perfect addition to any home, library, or school classroom. After the interview, I immediately ordered copies of a number of the books for my nieces to share with their young children, and hopefully, spark a desire to travel and learn a little bit of history.

Barbara Ann Mojica, Buy: Amazon US – And Amazon UK – Follow Barbara Ann : Goodreads – BlogBarbara Ann MojicaTwitter: @bamauthor

Meet Paul Noel

Something about my style and what I am trying to convey. I started off with some stories that I thought would be suitable for four to eight year old children. But wait, your four year old is not going to be able to read the stories. What? The stories are quite long and complicated and that is where you come in. These stories are meant for a parent, guardian or older sibling with younger child interaction. They are not meant as “go and sit in the corner” books. With that in mind I have tried to include subtlety in the stories so adults will be amused occasionally when they are reading them to a child.

I hope that you like this style. All the stories include b&w illustrations included in the text and can be read I believe by the older children in that range. In the print on demand A4 versions these illustrations are repeated at the end of the book as well as included in the text. Hopefully, the younger child will enjoy colouring these illustrations in while the older child will enjoy reading the story on their own. I am writing for older children as well and the first Busy Bee story, Busy Bee and the Endangered Meadow has been written for 8 – 12 year old children.

A selection of books by Paul Noel

A review for The Lost Marble

Nadejda Marian 5.0 out of 5 stars An Eventful Adventure and Colouring Illustrations  Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 23 April 2020

I bought The Lost Marble for my friend’s daugther and she told me on a video call how much she liked it. One of the things she really enjoyed was colouring in the illustrations.

Paul Noel, Buy : Amazon UK – And: Amazon US –  Blog: Paul Noel WordPressTwitter: @JunagarhMedia

Meet Judy Penz Sheluk

An Amazon International Bestselling Author, Judy Penz Sheluk’s debut mystery novel, The Hanged Man’s Noose, the first in the Glass Dolphin Mystery series, was published in July 2015. The sequel, A Hole In One, is scheduled for Spring 2018.

Skeletons in the Attic, Judy’s second novel, and the first in her Marketville Mystery series, was first published in August 2016 and re-released in December 2017. Past & Present, the sequel, is scheduled for early 2019.

Judy’s short crime and literary fiction appears in several collections.

In her less mysterious pursuits, Judy works as a freelance writer and editor; her articles have appeared regularly in dozens of U.S. and Canadian consumer and trade publications.

Past editorial responsibilities have included the roles of Senior Editor, Northeast Art & Antiques, Editor, Antiques and Collectibles Showcase, and Editor, Home Builder Magazine. She is currently the Senior Editor for New England Antiques Journal.

Judy is also a member of Sisters in Crime International, Sisters in Crime – Guppies, Sisters in Crime – Toronto, Crime Writers of Canada, International Thriller Writers, Inc. the South Simcoe Arts Council, and the Short Mystery Fiction Society. In addition, Judy has been elected to the 2017-18 Board of Directors for Crime Writers of Canada, as a Director, and as a Regional Representative for Toronto/Southern Ontario.

She lives in Alliston, Ontario, with her husband, Mike, and their golden retriever, Gibbs.

A selection of books by Judy Penz Sheluk

A recent review for Skeletons in the Attic on Goodreads

Jun 10, 2020 Kelly rated it four stars

This is book one in the Marketville Mystery series and I have to say I’m loving Judy Penz Sheluk’s writing. I love the descriptions and well thought out plots.

Cally has inherited a house in the small city of Marketville upon the death of her father. There is a catch however. She must live there for a year and renovate it as well as investigate her mother’s disappearance 30 years ago.

Cally meets several people who knew her parents and slowly learns the truth about her past and her mother’s disappearance. There are some shocking revelations, some unexpected friendships, and a conclusion which actually I wasn’t all the surprised over. Looking forward to listening to the next two books in the series

Judy Penz Sheluk, Buy: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK –  follow Judy : Goodreads –  blog: Judy Penz Sheluk – Twitter: @JudyPenzSheluk

Thank you for joining me today for this series and I will be sharing another three authors and their work every weekday during June and July. It would be great if you could share. Thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Meet the Authors – #Thriller Allan Hudson, #Poetry Joyce Murphy, #Paranormal #Romance Marcia Meara


There are over 150 authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and I wanted to keep it to key pieces of information such as buying links, recent review, website and covers. However, I know that readers also like to know more about the background of authors.

In this series during June and July I will share the bios of all the authors in the cafe in a random selection. I hope that this will introduce you to the authors in more depth and encourage you to check out their books and follow them on their blog and Twitter.

Meet Allan Hudson

I live by Cocagne Bay in Eastern Canada where the summers are hot by the seaside and the snow is deep in the winter. I married the greatest gal on earth, Gloria, and have a wonderful son Adam, two great stepsons Mark (Nathalie) and Chris (Mireille)Young. Three grandchildren Matthieu, Natasha and Damian.

I love reading. My mother was my school teacher and taught me to read and write when I was young. I’m thankful for that.
I’m a carpenter, woodworker, aspiring author and I sell jewellery for a living at Peoples Jewellers.

I love jazz music and am a HUGE fan of JJ Cale.

I have a wonderful life. I hope that you will read my novels – Wall of War and Dark Side of a Promise . I trust you will enjoy them and if so please tell someone.

A selection of books by Allan Hudson

One of the recent reviews for Shattered Figurine

Apr 09, 2020 Pierre Arseneault rated it Five Stars

Fantastic read. Allan is a great wordsmith to say the least. For such a small book, it packs a heck of a wallop.

Allan Hudson buy: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Follow Allan: Goodreads – Website: South Branch Scribbler – Twitter: @hudson_allan

Meet Joyce Murphy

I have been a scribbler all my life. We didn’t have money for writing paper in my house so I scribbled stories and poems on anything I could get my hands on. Wherever scribbling material was to be found, I wrote on it. This included between the lines of my Enid Blyton books, the white top and bottom margins of my parent’s ‘Joseph and his Amazing Technicolor Coat’ program, bits of copybook paper and even blank pages torn from other books.

The storyteller in me also found voice in play – play that to my Mother’s dismay, involved taking down ashtrays, combs, pens and plugs onto the floor and transforming these ordinary appliances into kings and queens and witches and wizards that lived in lands made of ice-cream and honey. I can never remember feeling deprived at my lack of toys but then having an amazing imaginary land to visit whenever I pleased, more than made up for it.

The poems found in my book, ‘Inner Rumblings,’ were written on small pieces of paper, torn out copybook pages and even on blank pages at the end of my biology book – lack of paper was never going to stop my urge to write.

The later poems were typed on my laptop but only after I had scribbled them into a notebook. Pen and paper has always been my method of choice for poems, it is the only way I can translate my emotions onto the page and I stick to it even today. Stories I type – stories are different and writing my new fantasy book creates a space for time to be spirited away as I lose myself in hours of writing.

My review for the collection 24th April 2020

Poetry should stir the emotions and convey imagery with flow and rhythm and Joyce Murphy achieves that in her debut collection of verse.

It is a collection that reflects many shades of human emotion through the various phases of the poet’s life from 15 years old after what was an idyllic childhood. Teenage years are not the easiest for many of us and it is clear that the poet experienced anguish and self doubt as she moved into young adulthood including the turmoil of first love. We travel with her to Germany where she worked as an au pair, experiencing feelings of being an outcast in this very different environment to Ireland… and the dilemma caused by a romantic attraction. 

There is also lightness from touches of humour and the renewal that comes with finding a soul mate in ‘Love’s Vision’, but it is countered by the enormity of great loss.

The poetry is a roller coaster that takes you along for the ride. I am sure that there will be life’s experiences that many will relate to throughout the phases of the collection.

Joyce Murphy buy: Amazon UK –  And: Amazon US – follow Joyce: Goodreads  –  Blog: Joycie Reilly Poetry – Twitter: @JoycieReilly

Meet Marcia Meara

Marcia Meara lives in central Florida, just north of Orlando, with her husband of over thirty years, four big cats, and one small dachshund.

When not writing or blogging, she spends her time gardening, and enjoying the surprising amount of wildlife that manages to make a home in her suburban yard. She enjoys nature. Really, really enjoys it. All of it! Well, almost all of it, anyway. From birds, to furry critters, to her very favorites, snakes. The exception would be spiders, which she truly loathes, convinced that anything with eight hairy legs is surely up to no good. She does not, however, kill spiders anymore, since she knows they have their place in the world. Besides, her husband now handles her Arachnid Catch and Release Program, and she’s good with that.

Spiders aside, the one thing Marcia would like to tell each of her readers is that it’s never too late to make your dreams come true. If, at the age of 69, she could write and publish a book (and thus fulfill 64 years of longing to do that very thing), you can make your own dreams a reality, too. Go for it! What have you got to lose?

A selection of books by Marcia Meara

A recent review for Wake-Robin Ridge

D. W. Peach5.0 out of 5 stars Romance and love story with a blend of thriller and mystery  Reviewed in the United States on June 28, 2020

Part romance, part thriller, part mystery, part ghost story, part epistolary, and most of all a love story, this first book in the Wake Robin Ridge series has it all, pulled together into a well-crafted tale. It’s quite a feat and thoroughly engaging.

The first half of the book alternates between two stories. One is Ruthie’s narrative, set in the early 1960s. She runs away from an abusive relationship and rebuilds her life in a rural cabin in the Carolinas. Ruthie’s story is definitely a nail-biting thriller, and I wanted to hide under my blankets.

The second narrative belongs to Sarah, who moves into the same cabin in 2011and starts up a romance with her neighbor, Mac, a man with a secret who’s conflicted about starting a relationship. Romance readers will enjoy many of the tropes that pepper their relationship.

Then in the middle of the book, an event changes everything for both women even though they live 50 years apart. Ruth’s story continues through a series of unmailed letters, and Sarah and Mac are determined to find out what happened to her. The romance and thriller parts of the book fade as the narrative shifts into mature love, grief, loyalty, and sacrifice. There were times when I got a little choked up.

Clearly the book has a lot going on, but it’s beautifully told and kept up a good pace, particularly in the second half. The characters are three dimensional with rich emotional lives and distinct voices. Ruthie was my favorite and the most sympathetic; it was her story that blurred the eyes. Highly recommended to love story and romance readers who enjoy a bit of a thrill and mystery blended in to add interest to the tale.

Marcia Meara, Buy: Amazon USAnd : Amazon UK – Marcia Meara on: Goodreads – Blog:Marcia Meara WritesTwitter: @MarciaMeara

Thank you for joining me today for this series and I will be sharing another three authors and their work every weekday during June and July. It would be great if you could share. Thanks Sally.

 

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Weekly Round Up – July 5th -11th 2020 – Josh Groban, Mango, Pigeons, Dublin 1944, Books, Health and Laughter


Welcome to the round up of posts you might have missed this week on Smorgasbord.

It has been a very mixed week as far as the weather is concerned. However, I was in and out more times than a cat, grabbing the odd ten minutes of sunshine here and there. It can change in a second with rain in the back garden and sunshine still in the front. There are a lot worse places to live, particularly during a pandemic as it is easier to avoid 5 million people than it is 65 million. Especially when there is more rural space.

Apart from my daily ins and outs, I also had my first hair appointment this week. I go to a family owned hairdresser and they certainly have gone to a lot of trouble and expense to prepare the salon for clients. I was wearing my own mask, but had my temperature checked once I was allowed in. A young assistant was kept busy disinfecting chairs, basins and stations between customers, and we all wore disposable gowns and the same with the towels. Thank goodness that despite the rule about no tea or coffee, and no magazines, we could still chat and it was great to catch up with my stylist Sam and her experiences over the last four months.

It feels great to have some shape back into my hair and if I can bring myself to put on some makeup on the next sunny day, I might get a new profile photo done… don’t hold your breath on either event …!

Now to the week….

I am very aware that I don’t get around to as many blogs as I would like on a daily basis and as I plan to get down to finishing the new book I am writing in August.. I thought it would be a good time to get the new Posts from Your Archives up and running. With the added bonus that I get to browse your blog archives from the last six months and catch up on all your great posts.

Since this series began in January 2018 there have been over 900 Posts from Your Archives where bloggers have taken the opportunity to share posts to a new audience… mine.

The topics have ranged from travel, childhood, recipes, history and the most recent series was on any aspect about family.

In this series I will be sharing posts from the first six months of 2020

It is an opportunity to showcase your writing skill to my readers and also to share on my social media. Which combined is around the 46,000 mark. If you are an author your books will be mentioned too, along with their buy links and your other social media contacts.

So what is different about this series?

  • This time, rather than you send me two links to posts from your blog archives, all I need you to do is give me permission to dive in myself and find two posts to share here on Smorgasbord.
  • Rather than a set topic, I will select posts at random across a number of subjects from the first six months of 2020.
  • As I will be promoting your books as part of the post along with all your information and links so I will not be sharing direct marketing or self- promotional posts in the series.
  • If you are an author I am sure you will have a page on your blog with the details, and an ‘about page’ with your profile and social media links (always a good idea anyway). I will get everything that I need.
  • As a blogger I would assume that you have an ‘about page’ a profile photo and your links to social media.
  • Copyright is yours and I will ©Your name on every post… and you will be named as the author in the URL and subject line.
  • Previous participants are very welcome to take part again.

N.B – To get the maximum benefit from your archive posts, the only thing I ask is that you respond to comments individually.. thank you.

To show how your post will look when featured… please head over to the post with an example from the Friends and Family archive posts earlier in the year. Jacquie Biggar with the story of her grandson and his brave approach to his Type I diabetes.

Smorgasbord Posts from Your Archives -#NewSeries August 2020- Pot Luck and Do You Trust Me??

William Price King is on his summer break which is a very busy time and his is offline, but I will be sharing some previous artists and every other week a Summer Music Festival… no mud, or portaloos…just good music. Some from William’s column and some from my own playlists. William sends his best wishes and apologises for not being able to respond to your comments.

This week Carol Taylor cooks up a storm as she showcases the letter ‘M’ in food and culinary terms…and there are plenty of books on show to overload your TBR’s

I am in the last three weeks of the series Meet the Authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and hopefully all your details will then be up to date… if you are in the cafe and have not yet been featured.. don’t worry everyone will be included..

The Music Column with William Price King – Josh Groban – Part Two

Carol Taylor – A – Z of Food – ‘M’ is for Mayonnaise, Mango, Mousse, Morels, Khao Neow Manuang and Marengo

Chapter Nine – The Boy, his Dog and a Fairy Princess

Geoff leaves Waterford for the bright lights of Dublin and the adventures of being a boarder with other lads of the infamous Mrs Keller….

The Colour of Life The Digs In Dublin 1944

A Haiku and some examples of my late father-in-law’s wonderful wood carving.

#Ireland Tree Stumps by Sally Cronin

Letters from America 1985-1987 – June 1985 – Photos from Disney Adventure, Alone in America, Television Fitness Classes

Project 101 – Resilience – The importance of a healthy gut (part one)

dandelion

The Medicine Woman’s Treasure Chest – Herbal Medicine -Dandelion

A Year in the Life of Leah Brand: A #Psychological Thriller by Lucinda E. Clarke

Colleen Chesebro’s weekly Tanka Challenge -#DoubleEtheree – The Visitor

#Fantasy – Jack Hughes & Thomas the Rhymer (Book 1) by Paul Andruss

#DarkHumour Someday Everything Will All Make Sense by Carol LaHines

#Dystopian – Acts of Convenience by Alex Craigie

#Fantasy – Soul Swallowers (The Shattered Sea Book 1) by D.Wallace Peach

#YAParanormalFantasy, Heather Kindt, #HistoricalMystery Amy M. Reade, #Children’s Janice Spina

#Contemporary Olga Nunez Miret, #Poetry Frank Prem, #Poetry Balroop Singh

#Romance Linda Bradley, #Fantasy Audrey Driscoll, #YAAdventure Darlene Foster.

#Shortstories Cathy Cade, #Historical Noelle Granger, #SouthernSaga Claire Fullerton

#YAFantasy Kevin Cooper, #Mystery Mary Anne Edwards, #Historical Apple Gidley

#Memoir Chuck Jackson, #Memoir Brigid Gallagher, #ShortStories Anne Goodwin

#1920s Elizabeth Gauffreau, #History Paul Edmondson, #Shortstories Karen Ingalls

Smorgasbord Laughter Lines – July 7th 2020 – Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin

Smorgasbord Laughter Lines – July 9th 2020 – Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin

Irish Weather The Musical with International guests presented by I.V.E Mildew… AKA Herself.

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Meet the Authors – #Poetry M.J. Mallon, #Contemporary Olga Nunez Miret, #Dystopian Teri Polen


There are over 150 authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and I wanted to keep it to key pieces of information such as buying links, recent review, website and covers. However, I know that readers also like to know more about the background of authors.

In this series during June and July I will share the bios of all the authors in the cafe in a random selection. I hope that this will introduce you to the authors in more depth and encourage you to check out their books and follow them on their blog and Twitter.

Meet M. J. Mallon

I am an author who has been blogging for many moons: https://mjmallon.com. My interests include writing, photography, poetry, and alternative therapies. I write Fantasy YA, and middle grade fiction as well as micropoetry – haiku and tanka. I love to read and have written over 100 Book Reviews

My alter ego is MJ – Mary Jane from Spiderman. I love superheros! I was born on the 17th of November in Lion City: Singapore, (a passionate Scorpio, with the Chinese Zodiac sign a lucky rabbit. I grew up in a mountainous court in the Peak District in Hong Kong.

As a teenager I travelled to many far-flung destinations. It’s rumoured that I now live in the Venice of Cambridge, with my six foot hunk of a Rock God husband, and my two enchanted daughters.

When I’m not writing, I eat exotic delicacies while belly dancing, or surf to the far reaches of the moon. To chill out, I practise Tai Chi. If the mood takes me I snorkel with mermaids, or sign up for idyllic holidays with the Chinese Unicorn, whose magnificent voice sings like a thousand wind chimes.

Books by M.J. Mallon

One of the recent reviews for Mr. Sagittarius

May 11, 2020 Miriam Hurdle rated it Five Stars it was amazing

In Mr. Sagittarius, M J Mallon told the story of the twin brothers, Harold, and William, and their sister Annette. The brothers shared the magic of the little creatures and the natural beauty in the botanical garden.

Harold and William loved sitting on a bench under a golden weeping willow tree. After Harold passed away, William sat on the bench grieving for his loss. A dragonfly came to visit him, and he felt as if he had a conversation with the dragonfly. He went back to his flat unhappily toward Annette, his sister who cared for him. Annette confronted him that the twins only cared for each other and neglected her. William apologized, and they hugged each other. Before the night was over, Annette knitted a rainbow hat for William which he would love for a Christmas gift. When he visited the bench again, he felt the hat flew up and landed on top of a tree next to a ginger-color tomcat. The dragonfly, the cat, and the hat became a magical tale at Christmas.

Annette had her share of the magical moment when she received a gift of bubble bath from her late husband. When she poured the entire bottle into the bathtub, the bubble seemed to be with no end.

This is a lovely story told in a charming way. In between the episodes of the aging siblings’ lives were the beautiful poetry and photos from the author.

M.J.Mallon, Buy:   Amazon US – And  Amazon UK Website: M.J. Mallon – Goodreads: Goodreads – Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon

Meet Olga Nunez Miret

My name is Olga Núñez Miret and I’m a writer. I also do translations of other author’s work. What else? I was born in Barcelona, Spain,lived in the UK for many years and went back home again in the Spring 2018. Over the years I’ve done many things and had other lives but however far I wander I keep coming back to books and stories, my two earliest loves. When reading was no longer enough, I started writing. My first book was published in 2012 and my publications span different genres, from literary fiction to romance, Young Adult and psychological thrillers. I plan on writing more novels in the same genres and if my imagination so dictates, I will explore others. I love to connect with readers, so don’t hesitate to get in touch..

Olga has translated her own books into Spanish of course and she has also translated some excellent Spanish books into English and you can find out more here. Olga Nunez Miret – Translations

Books by Olga Nunez Miret

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One of the Reviews You’re Never Too Old to be a Prom Queen

June 27th 2020 Christoph Fischer

I really enjoyed this beautiful book. Told in parts in interviews with Mildred , her family, friends and new acquaintances of hers, this is a charming book about a woman making a life long dream come true.

Mildred is an instantly likeable character, a psychiatric nurse with a drive to help others. In her quest she meets a lot of other great characters with similar passions and resolves a few issues and problems on the way to her very own prom.

There is a wonderful air of diversity around the cast, people coming together and enriching each other’s lives. While the narrative documents the events and preparations taking place, the interviews cast additional light onto the characters, their past and likes and disliked.

Once again, Olga’s background as psychologist adds credibility and deeper insights.

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a lovely story, engaging and warm characters and a feel good story through and through. A definite winner.

Olga Nunez Miret – Buy: Amazon UK – and: Amazon US – Blog: Olga Nunez Miret Author TranslatorGoodreads: Olga on GoodreadsTwitter- @OlgaNM7

Meet Teri Polen

Teri Polen reads and watches horror, sci-fi, and fantasy. The Walking Dead, Harry Potter, and anything Marvel-related are likely to cause fangirl delirium. She lives in Bowling Green, KY with her husband, sons, and black cat. Sarah, her debut novel, was named a horror finalist in the 2017 Next Generation Indie Book Awards.

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A recent review for Subject A36

Mae Clair 5.0 out of 5 stars Non-stop action  Reviewed in the United States on April 24, 2020

Set in a dystopian future, Asher and his team live in a world where children with desirable traits (specific hair or eye color, physical strength, agility, etc), are captured and harvested for “gene stripping” so the wealthy can purchase coveted qualities like selecting from an a la carte menu. After seeing the destruction of his family, seventeen-year-old Asher has found a new family with his team, including, Brynn, who he has come to love and Noah, who is like a brother. But doing what they do comes with excessive risk and plenty of danger.From the start, there is barely time to catch your breath. The reader is given detailed insight into Asher’s character as well as multiple members of his team. Each are unique and fully fleshed out individuals, the good and the bad.

The Colony—which orchestrates gene stripping—is set on finding and capturing Subject A36, a genetically altered individual designed as the perfect killing machine.

This novel is packed with non-stop action, and shocking revelation piled upon revelation. The writing is smooth and snappy, scenes plunging like a roller coaster from one into the next. I devoured this book in two sittings and highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys dystopian fiction, great YA characters, and pulse-pounding action.

Teri Polen, Buy : Amazon US – And:Amazon UK – Follow Teri:Goodreads – website: Teri PolenTwitter: @Tpolen6

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope that you have enjoyed meeting more of the authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and discovering their books. Thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Meet the Authors – #1920s Elizabeth Gauffreau, #History Paul Edmondson, #Shortstories Karen Ingalls


There are over 150 authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and I wanted to keep it to key pieces of information such as buying links, recent review, website and covers. However, I know that readers also like to know more about the background of authors.

In this series during June and July I will share the bios of all the authors in the cafe in a random selection. I hope that this will introduce you to the authors in more depth and encourage you to check out their books and follow them on their blog and Twitter.

Meet Elizabeth Gauffreau

I have always been drawn to the inner lives of other people–what they care about, what they most desire, what causes them pain, what brings them joy. These inner lives become my characters. I write to tell their stories.

My fiction and poetry have been published in literary magazines, including Rio Grande Review, Serving House Journal, Soundings East, Hospital Drive, Blueline, Evening Street Review, and Adelaide Literary Magazine, as well as several themed anthologies. Telling Sonny is my first published book.

I hold a B.A. in English/Writing from Old Dominion University and an M.A. in English/Fiction Writing from the University of New Hampshire. Currently, I am the Assistant Dean of Curriculum and Assessment at Champlain College Online in Burlington, Vermont.

One of the recent reviews for Telling Sonny

Telling Sonny is the sad, wonderful tale of Faby Gauthier, a small-town Vermont girl just coming of age who is seduced by a smooth-talking vaudeville actor whose stage name is Slim White. After he leaves town Faby finds she is pregnant. She eventually tracks him down and they are married, much to the chagrin of her conservative French-Canadian family. Louis Kittel (Slim’s true name) then brings Faby south, from city to town, show to show and the whole while her hopes of this man she barely knows turning into a reliable and loving husband and father begin to fade.

As the book moves along the author Elizabeth Gauffreau does a masterful job of pulling the reader right into the 1920s—the colorful description, imagery and period-perfect word selection makes the reader wonder if this might actually have been some gifted writer’s diary from the early 20th century that was turned into a novel.

By the middle of the book I was invested emotionally in Faby’s plight, and strongly disliked the lying, cheating Slim White and in each chapter I hoped he would either come around and change for Faby’s sake (and the sake of his child), or that Faby would simply leave him. Alas, neither of those things truly came to pass, and near the end I wondered if this was just one of those unhappy stories that was well- and intentionally written to do nothing other than evoke sorrow and melancholy. I was delighted to find, however, that this wasn’t quite the case, as the final two chapters seemed to bring closure to Faby’s unfortunate story.

All in all, a beautifully written, evocative, sad, and curiously happy story I will remember for a long time to come.

Elizabeth Gauffreau, BuyAmazon US – and : Amazon UK – Follow Elizabeth: Goodreads –  blog: Liz Gauffreau – Twitter: @lgauffreau

Meet Paul Edmondson

Paul Edmondson was born in Salford, England and now lives in Waterford, Ireland. He has retired, enabling him to pursue his passions of writing and photography.

He is a founding member of the Waterford Writers group and his poems have appeared in an anthology of Waterford Writers, in Déise Voices, regional newspapers and magazines. His photographic works have appeared on national television, national and regional newspapers.

He has presented his work at public forums, including open mic sessions and at charitable events.

Having travelled to every continent through his working life, it was visiting Yosemite National Park and surrounding areas for pleasure that gave him the inspiration and motivation to study the history of the park and its indigenous populations, leading to the writing of Great Spirit of Yosemite: The Story of Chief Tenaya.

One of the recent reviews for the book on Goodreads

Jun 22, 2020 Mary Crowley rated it Five Stars it was amazing

Set in a natural backdrop of mountains capturing the Indian way of life. The Story of Chief Tenya is a refreshing insight of historical events interwoven with a skilfully written story. Most books tend focus on tales of new settlers whereas The Story of Chief Tenya offers an awareness of tribal life, resulting in being both an educational and compelling read. We learn of the sacrifices Indians were forced to endure as their heritage was threatened by greed and violence. The book not only offers literary insight but is also filled with beautiful photographs. A fantastic and beautifully written novel which I highly recommend reading.

Paul Edmondson, buy: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK  – follow Paul: Goodreads – Website: Paul Edmondson Author – Facebook: Paul Edmondson

Meet Karen Ingalls

Karen Ingalls is the author of four books of which two are award-winning. She has published non-fiction, biographical novel, historical novel, and short stories. She is a retired Registered Nurse with a Masters Degree in Human Development.

Ms. Ingalls’s non-fiction book, Outshine: An Ovarian Cancer Memoir, won first place at the 2012 Indie Excellence Book Awards in the category of women’s health. It was a top finalist for the Independent Publisher Book Award of 2012 in the two categories of health and self-help.
The book offers hope and inspiration to women and their families.

Her most recent book is a series of twelve short stories When I Rise: Tales, Truths, and Symbolic Trees.

Davida: Model & Mistress is about the love affair between her great-grandparents Augustus Saint-Gaudens and Davida. There are little-known facts about Davida except for her role as a model for many of the sculptor’s famous works. It won the Pinnacle Book Achievement Award and the Apple Award for 2016.

Novy’s Son, The Selfish Genius, is about Murray Clark, who sought love and acceptance from his father, who was the bastard child of the famous sculptor, Augustus Saint-Gaudens. After reading Iron John by Robert Bly, Ms. Ingalls recognized what was missing in her father’s life.

She is a blogger, public speaker, author of many articles, and advocate for gynecologic cancer awareness and fundraiser for research. In her spare time, she loves to read and play golf.

Karen donates all proceeds from her books to ovarian cancer research.

Books by Karen Ingalls

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A recent review for When I Rise

L D Tanner5.0 out of 5 stars Tales of Social Issues Tied to Symbolism of Trees  Reviewed in the United States on April 12, 2020

What drew me to read “When I Rise” by Karen Ingalls are 12 modern-day tales of social issues and how they are symbolically tied to trees. Each of the tales is about a social issue that is told in a unique way. Some tales span several generations while others are told about a moment in time. Some of the tales are inspiring while others are sobering. The tales that most resonated with me are “The Cigar Box” and “The Machine Shop.” Others may find other short stories have special meaning for them.

“The Cigar Box” is about a hand-crafted box that is hand-crafted from cedar, but the carving on the top of the lid is an olive tree standing alone in a field and with branches stretching “as if trying to reach out and touch someone or something.” The tale spans several generations as the cigar box is handed off to each new generation. It is a poignant story of how family members tried to reach out to each other while working a winery beginning in 1833. The cigar box has a magical mist that whenever someone breathes in its aroma, the person’s well-being or sense of purpose improves in a mystical way. It as though the cigar box embraces the best of each person’s essence and emanates its sweet fragrance.

“The Machine Shop” is a sobering short story about the psychological impact on a family after the mother dies. It is a tragic tale that is associated with the Cypress Tree about the importance of talking with children about life and death, and helping them to deal with difficult times instead of succumbing to them.

Author Karen Ingalls masterfully reveals the truth about how we deal with issues in life by symbolically relating these to trees. I recommend reading the softcover book as it is beautifully formatted which adds to the reading experience.

Karen Ingalls, buy the books: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Follow Karen: Goodreads – Blog: Karen Ingalls – Twitter: @KIngallsAuthor

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope that you have enjoyed meeting more of the authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and discovering their books. Thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Meet the Authors – #Memoir Chuck Jackson, #Memoir Brigid Gallagher, #ShortStories Anne Goodwin


There are over 150 authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and I wanted to keep it to key pieces of information such as buying links, recent review, website and covers. However, I know that readers also like to know more about the background of authors.

In this series during June and July I will share the bios of all the authors in the cafe in a random selection. I hope that this will introduce you to the authors in more depth and encourage you to check out their books and follow them on their blog and Twitter.

Meet Chuck Jackson

Chuck Jackson is a retired accountant living in South East Florida. He graduated from the University of Texas at San Antonio with a BBA in Accounting. He spent the last 25 years of his career working as the Budget Manager for a Special District in Palm Beach County. He was a member of Government Finance Officer’s Association (GFOA) and Florida’s GFOA.

Since his retirement, Chuck has spent his years studying and enhancing his love for writing. In June 2016, he released his first book: One Month, 20 Days, and a Wake-Up. In July 2017 he released: What Did I Do?. May 2018 he released: Guilt — My Companion. All three books are available as an e-book or paperback.

Books by Chuck Jackson

A recent review for One Month, 20 Days and a Wake Up

An outstanding, detailed account of a personal nature . Very interesting and informative of the training and sacrifices made by those who dedicate to serve in such a capacity . Definitely one of the best books I’ve read detailing the many facets and dynamics of Military service. Recommended reading for anyone, absolutely well written and compelling.

Outstanding detailed account of a personal nature. Very telling of the training and sacrifices made by those who dedicate to service in such a capacity.

Chuck Jackson, Buy: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – follow Chuck: Goodreads –  blog: Chuck Jackson – Twitter: @chuck_cljjlk

Meet Brigid Gallagher

 

I live in County Donegal, an area of outstanding natural beauty on the north west corner of Ireland. I have a passion for gardening and Nature.

Natural Medicines – Although I aspired to becoming a doctor, it was not my destiny. Instead I embarked on studies to become one of the first natural medicine practitioners in Scotland, eventually becoming a tutor for community projects, a woman’s prison, and the Open Studies and Summer Schools of Stirling University from 1993 to 1999.

Fibromyalgia – In 1999, I relocated to Donegal, Ireland – the home of my ancestors. Four years later I succumbed to a mystery illness that was eventually diagnosed as fibromyalgia.

“Stopping the World” forced me to reassess my life, and creative writing became a significant aid in my recovery.

Organic Horticulture – I retrained in organic horticulture, worked in the glorious gardens of Glenveagh Castle, and inspired children and teachers to create organic school gardens through The Heritage in Schools Scheme. In the spring of 2016, I retired from teaching.
Life Lessons on the Importance of Slow

Learning to slow down has been one of my major life lessons – hence the title of this blog and my inspirational self help memoir “Watching the Daisies – Life Lessons on the Importance of Slow.

I hope that you will be inspired on your self healing journey through reading my memoir and my blog posts.

One of the recent reviews for the book

Eileen Moynihan 5.0 out of 5 stars This is an unusual memoir Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 5 April 2020

This is an unusual memoir in that it is not only a journey through life, but covers the authors actual physical journeys alongside her spiritual and knowledge journeys. Brigid Gallagher is a seeker who seeks healing for her bodily ailments, sense and guidance for her spiritual and emotional ailments, and knowledge for her intellectual needs. She is open to all knowledge and all people. She has a natural curiosity for all that life offers and draws the reader into her interesting life.

As of someone around the same age I can identify with the different singers and events she mentions.

The suggestions at the end of each chapter are helpful and thought provoking.

Brigid P. Gallagher, Buy: Amazon UK – and:  Amazon US – Follow Brigid on : Goodreads –  Blog: Watching the Daisies – Twitter: @watchingthedai1

Meet Anne Goodwin

Anne Goodwin

Anne Goodwin loves fiction for the freedom to contradict herself and has been scribbling stories ever since she could hold a pencil. During her career as an NHS clinical psychologist her focus was on helping other people tell their neglected stories to themselves. Now that her short fiction publication count has overtaken her age, her ambition is to write and publish enough novels to match her shoe size. Her debut novel, Sugar and Snails, was published in July 2015 by Inspired Quill and shortlisted for the 2016 Polari First Book Prize. Her second novel, Underneath, was published in 2017. Her short story collection, Becoming Someone, on the theme of identity was published in November 2018. A former clinical psychologist, Anne is also a book blogger with a particular interest in fictional therapists.

Books by Anne Goodwin

An recent review for Somebody’s Daughter on Goodreads

I had to limit myself to reading one story a day, because there was so much in each on to mull over and consider. The author has such an evocative way of expressing her characters – in so few words, she creates their whole world. Heartbreaking, poignant, thought-provoking.

Anne Goodwin, Buy:Amazon UK – And : Amazon US – follow Anne : Goodreads – blog: Annecdotal – Twitter: @Annecdotist

 

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope that you have enjoyed meeting more of the authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and discovering their books. Thanks Sally.

 

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Meet the Authors – #YAFantasy Kevin Cooper, #Mystery Mary Anne Edwards, #Historical Apple Gidley


There are over 150 authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and I wanted to keep it to key pieces of information such as buying links, recent review, website and covers. However, I know that readers also like to know more about the background of authors.

In this series during June and July I will share the bios of all the authors in the cafe in a random selection. I hope that this will introduce you to the authors in more depth and encourage you to check out their books and follow them on their blog and Twitter.

Meet Kevin Cooper

Kevin Cooper is an eclectic author & songwriter. His works are multifarious. He has published fantasy, sci-fi, memoirs and drama in the form of novels, novellas, short stories, poetry and song.

Some of KC’s major influences in literature are JRR Tolkien, Philip Pullman, C.S Lewis, Terry Brooks, and J.K Rowling.

KC was born in Hull, England. At 21 years of age, he moved to the USA where he first attended Western Kentucky University, but transferred to Asbury College where he graduated with a BA in Psychology. He then attended Asbury Theological Seminary for a couple of years before moving to Arizona where he enrolled at the Grand Canyon University, obtained a research fellowship and graduated with a M.Ed. His career in education spanned from tutor to teacher, to college lecturer. He later changed careers and went into management working for The Hertz Corporation. After almost twenty years living and working in the USA, he returned to England where his worked in the NHS for several years before giving up work to care for his wife, and focus on his writing and music.

A selection of books by Kevin Cooper

A recent review forThe Wizard, The Girl, and The Unicorn’s Horn: The Chronicles of Geo Book One

An ancient evil power is encroaching on the world of Geo, blanketing the land in shadow and stealing villagers. The story tracks the daring adventures of three groups, two off to destroy the shadow, and one simply trying to survive. They all ultimately come together for a final battle.

One narrative follows the wizard, the protector of Geo. He joins with some rambunctious goblins who lead him through the mountain’s tunnels to Land’s End, the barren home of the shadow and its packs of demon wargs (wolf-like creatures). At the same time, Elyysa, a young girl with a magical past, allies with Geo’s wise trolls who collect tolls at the many bridges. She too heads for Land’s End and carries with her a powerful unicorn horn. The third narrative focuses on the villagers who find themselves swept up by the shadow and stranded in a cave. They must make their way through dangerous passageways to the surface.

The story is simply told with a steady pace and vocabulary that a middle-grade student would be able to handle … but there is quite a bit of tragedy in the caves, including the deaths of children and families, and significant violence during the warg attacks. For these reasons, I’d steer this read to mature middle-graders, preteens, and young teenagers who enjoy a fantastical tale of adventure and can deal with the scary and sad moments. (My 7-year-old grandson couldn’t handle it, but grammy enjoyed it!)

Kevin Cooper, Buy: Amazon UK – And: Amazon US –   Follow Kevin: Goodreads – blog:Author Kevin CooperTwitter:@KevinCo34737852

Meet Mary Anne Edwards

Born in Mercedes, Texas, Mary Anne has lived in Georgia for most of her life. A life-long fan of authors such as Agatha Christie, Anne Perry, Caroline Graham, and Elizabeth Peters, it wasn’t until a few years ago that Mary Anne listened to the voices in her head and began writing her own series of traditional mysteries featuring Detective Charlie McClung.

The first book in the series, Brilliant Disguise, was released to critical acclaim in January 2014. The next three in the series, A Good Girl, Criminal Kind, and Sins of my Youth were released soon afterward. The fifth book in the series, Flirting with Time, was released on June 30, 2017. Mary Anne released the sixth book, How Deep is the Darkness, on December 2, 2019, with at least three more to follow.

Although Mary Anne is a middle-aged woman, she believes no matter how old you are you should have fun. Don’t let anyone steal your joy by telling you you’re too old. The main female protagonist in the Charlie McClung Mysteries is an interesting snapshot of the author’s sensibilities.

Mary Anne and her husband of 39 years live in Smyrna, GA with an ill-tempered Tuxedo cat named Gertrude. Mary Anne is active in the Sisters in Crime and sits on the advisory board of Rockdale Cares, a non-profit advocacy group for the developmentally challenged.

Books by Mary Anne Edwards

A  recent review for How Deep is the Darkness

Carolyn Hindel 5.0 out of 5 stars A thriller through and through!  Reviewed in the United States on June 16, 2020

I always look forward to the next book in this series! And this one was no exception. The thrill and mystery was on until the end. If you love mysteries full of life, love, and excitement, this one’s for you! Two thumbs up 👍

Mary Anne Edwards, Buy:Amazon US – and: Amazon UK – Follow Mary Anne on: Goodreads – Website: Mary Anne Edwards Twitter: @maedwards58

Meet Apple Gidley

A transient life has seen Anglo-Australian Apple Gidley live in countries as diverse as Papua New Guinea and Thailand, Equatorial Guinea and the USA, and another eight in between. Her memoir, Expat Life Slice by Slice tells of the highs and lows of that nomadic life – one she wouldn’t trade for all the proverbial tea in one of the places she hasn’t lived, China.

Gidley’s roles have been varied – editor, intercultural trainer for multi-national corporations, Her Britannic Majesty’s Honorary Consul to Equatorial Guinea, amongst others. She started writing full time twelve years ago.

Gidley writes a regular blog, A Broad View, and has two published novels, Fireburn and Transfer, which are set on St Croix, and she has stories published in various anthologies and is working on a book of short stories. A novel, set in 1950’s Malaya is currently with agents and she is now working on another historical novel set in Poland and India.

Books by Apple Gidley

One of the recent reviews for Transfer

 Dianna 5.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining  Reviewed in the United States on April 20, 2020

What an entertaining story, one of two books. Fireburn , the first and now Transfer, the second book allow you to visit what life was like in St Croix VI back in the day. You’ll be absorbed deeply into each characters personalities and experiences. Truly engaging and so hard to near the end of the book without craving more. Thank you Apple for your talent to combine St Croix history and landmarks with fictional characters. Truly sensational!!

Apple Gidley, Buy: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK –  follow Apple: Goodreads –  Blog:Apple Gidley WordPress – Twitter: @ExpatApple

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope that you have enjoyed meeting more of the authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and discovering their books. Thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Meet the Authors – #Shortstories Cathy Cade, #Historical Noelle Granger, #SouthernSaga Claire Fullerton


There are over 150 authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and I wanted to keep it to key pieces of information such as buying links, recent review, website and covers. However, I know that readers also like to know more about the background of authors.

In this series during June and July I will share the bios of all the authors in the cafe in a random selection. I hope that this will introduce you to the authors in more depth and encourage you to check out their books and follow them on their blog and Twitter.

Meet Cathy Cade

Cathy Cade

 

Cathy lives with her husband and dogs, mostly in the Cambridgeshire Fens and sometimes across the fence from London’s Epping Forest. Following a career in libraries where creative writing opportunities were limited to annual reports, she now produces a different kind of fiction.

Cathy’s short stories have been published in ‘Scribble’ magazine and Chris Fielden’s ‘To Hull and Back 2018, Short Stories’. Her stories and rhymes also appear in the anthologies ‘Where the Wild Winds Blow’ and ‘A Following Wind’, from the Whittlesey Wordsmiths’ creative writing group (both available from Amazon.)

Her verse owes more to Pam Ayres than G K Chesterton. Examples can be found at Commaful (see https://commaful.com/play/cathycade/) and on WordPress at cathy-cade.com.

Instead of budgets and report deadlines, her targets now involve wordcounts and competition deadlines, but she is having more fun.

Books by Cathy Cade

A recent review for Witch Way

Phil 5.0 out of 5 stars A Brilliant collection  Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 12 May 2020

Cathy is an excellent writer. The well written short stories and poetry in this book are varied and eclectic, the product of a wonderfully fertile imagination.

My favourite but only just, is probably Witch Way, I loved it from the moment of my first reading and have reread it several times.

Cathy Cade, buy : Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Follow Cathy: Goodreads  Website: Cathy CadeFacebook: Cathy Cade Wordsmith.

Meet Noelle Granger

Noelle A. Granger grew up in Plymouth, Massachusetts, in a rambling, 125-year-old house with a view of the sea. Summers were spent sailing and swimming. She was also one of the first tour guides at Plimoth Plantation. Granger graduated from Mount Holyoke College with a bachelor’s degree in Zoology and from Case Western Reserve University with a Ph.D. in anatomy. Following a career of research in developmental biology and teaching human anatomy to medical students and residents, the last 28 years of which were spent at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, she decided to try her hand at writing fiction. The Rhe Brewster Mystery Series was born.

In addition to the Rhe Brewster Mystery Series, Granger has had short stories, both fiction and non-fiction, published in Deep South Magazine, Sea Level Magazine, the Bella Online Literary Review, and Coastal Style Magazine, and has been featured in Chapel Hill Magazine, The News & Observer, The Boothbay Register, and other local press. Granger lives with her husband, a cat who blogs, and a hyperactive dog in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. She spends a portion of every summer in Maine.

Books by Noelle Granger

One of the recent reviews for The Last Pilgrim

What a fascinating read, especially with the 400th anniversary of the departure of the Mayflower this year. I had no idea about all the hardships the Pilgrims/Separatists had to endure, and if they had not made it then we wouldn’t be here today. Her book makes you feel present at that time right along with the new settlers to the Americas. This is an entertaining way to learn the history of our great country.

Noelle A. Granger Buy: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK Blog: Sayling Away – Goodreads:Noelle A. Granger – Twitter: @NAGrangerAuthor

Meet Claire Fullerton

Claire Fullerton hails from Memphis, TN. and now lives in Malibu, CA. with her husband and 3 German shepherds. She is the author of Mourning Dove, a coming of age, Southern family saga set in 1970’s Memphis. Mourning Dove is a five-time award winner, including the Literary Classics Words on Wings for Book of the Year, and the Ippy Award silver medal in regional fiction ( Southeast.) Claire is also the author of Dancing to an Irish Reel, a Kindle Book Review and Readers’ Favorite award winner that is set on the west coast of Ireland, where she once lived. Claire’s first novel is a paranormal mystery set in two time periods titled, A Portal in Time, set in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California.

She is a contributor to the book, A Southern Season with her novella, Through an Autumn Window, set at a Memphis funeral ( because something always goes wrong at a Southern funeral.) Little Tea is Claire’s 4th novel and is set in the Deep South. It is the story of the bonds of female friendship, healing the past, and outdated racial relations. Little Tea is the August selection of the Pulpwood Queens, a Faulkner Society finalist in the William Wisdom international competition, and on the long list of the Chanticleer Review’s Somerset award. She is represented by Julie Gwinn of the Seymour Literary.

Books by Claire Fullerton

One of the recent reviews for Little Tea

Alice Bingham Gorman 5.0 out of 5 stars A Southern Saga Reviewed in the United States on June 24, 2020

Barbara Kingsolver says. “Good fiction creates empathy. A novel takes you somewhere and asks you to look through the eyes of another person, to live another life.” That is exactly what Claire Fullerton has done with LITTLE TEA. As a reader, you will live as a southerner in Como, Mississippi, Memphis, Tennessee, and Heber Springs, Arkansas. You will experience the physical surroundings, understand the needs and wants and prejudices of the multigenerational population, and most of all you will go to the heart of a privileged southern woman, her deep abiding friendships and her special awareness of the embedded issues of race. LITTLE TEA is a story for our time.

Claire Fullerton, Buy: Amazon US – and: Amazon UK – Follow Claire on : Goodreads – website: Claire Fullerton – Twitter: @Cfullerton3

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope that you have enjoyed meeting more of the authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and discovering their books. Thanks Sally.

 

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Meet the Authors – #Romance Linda Bradley, #Fantasy Audrey Driscoll, #YAAdventure Darlene Foster.


There are over 150 authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and I wanted to keep it to key pieces of information such as buying links, recent review, website and covers. However, I know that readers also like to know more about the background of authors.

In this series during June and July I will share the bios of all the authors in the cafe in a random selection. I hope that this will introduce you to the authors in more depth and encourage you to check out their books and follow them on their blog and Twitter.

Meet Linda Bradley

Linda’s inspiration comes from her favorite authors and life itself. Her women’s fiction highlights characters that peel away outer layers of life to discover the heart of their dreams with some unexpected twists and turns along the way. Her writing integrates humor found in everyday situations, as well as touching moments, thus creating avenues for readers to connect with her characters.

Linda has an Associates Degree in Interior Design and a Master’s Degree in Reading and Language Arts with undergraduate work in Elementary Education and Fine Arts. She wrote and illustrated a children’s book titled, The Hunter for her Master’s Degree. Linda is a member of RWA, as well as the Greater Detroit and Mid-Michigan Chapters. She is also a member of the Capital City Writers Association in Lansing, Michigan

Books by Linda Bradley

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A recent review for Maggie’s Way

molly doerr 5.0 out of 5 stars Comfort food between the pages.  Reviewed in the United States on April 16, 2020

A wonderful summer or winter read on the couch or in the sun. As a cancer survivor that part rang true and was a nice counterpoint to the relationships growing or resolving with ex husband, child, love interest, mother & boyfriend’s ex wife. Nicely paced with observations to ponder and a budding romance to enjoy.

Linda Bradley, Buy: Amazon US –  And : Amazon UK – Follow Linda :Goodreads website: Linda Bradley Author – Twitter: @LBradleyAuthor

Meet Audrey Driscoll

I grew up reading books, and became interested in making stories myself. I worked out scenes and bits of dialogue, and made my friends act out little dramas based on my favourite book at the time – Rudyard Kipling’s Jungle Book.

With that background, it was inevitable I would become a writer. It just took a while. After establishing a career as a librarian – first at the University of Saskatchewan and then at the Greater Victoria Public Library in British Columbia – I had a meaningful encounter with H.P. Lovecraft’s character Herbert West.

Strangely fascinated by HPL’s corpse-reanimating physician and his friend the nameless narrator, I built a set of stories around them. In 2000, I was compelled to write them down. The result was The Friendship of Mortals and three more novels, which constitute the Herbert West Series. Self-publishing became respectable and relatively easy just in time to rescue me from the sad fate of the Unpublished Writer.

Reluctant to abandon the characters I had spent so much time with, I wrote and published several short stories as supplements to the Herbert West Series. In 2018, I published She Who Comes Forth, a novel that may be considered a sequel to the series.

My other interest is gardening a patch of earth on southern Vancouver Island. I post about that at least as often as I do about books and writing — with pictures! To me, writing and gardening are forms of alchemy — a mysterious process of creating excellence from the chaos of the world.

A selection of books by Audrey Driscoll

A recent review for She Who Comes Forth

 benjamin l haskett 5.0 out of 5 stars Great characters, great cast, and a great, subtle plot in the background.  Reviewed in the United States on April 24, 2020
She Who Comes Forth was a fantastic read. The story it told was engaging, but even more impressive was its delivery. The book is narrated in first-person by main character France Leighton, a young woman tasked with sorting rocks at an archaeological dig site in Egypt. France is a wonderful storyteller. I felt like she spoke to me directly; like she was recalling her time in Egypt to me from a comfy chair in front of a fireplace. Her tale is frontloaded with natural digressions about family and her apprehension for various tasks that she is ill-suited to carry out. She is honest and personal and warm, unashamed about her fears and self-doubt.

The backdrop here is that in the 1960s, France accepts a gig in Egypt to work at an archaeological dig site. She admits to the reader that she has zero applicable experience, and… it’s revealed early on that the man who hired her may have done so for, well, dubious reasons. (One detail I do not recall is whether she had any experience/education that was even tangentially applicable.)

When she arrives at the dig house and it’s revealed that she doesn’t really belong, the people in charge empathize with the long journey she’s taken from the Providence, Rhode Island, and go out of their way to find a place for her. Sorting rocks is kind of a bummer job, but she makes the best of it with good cheer and an upbeat attitude (mostly). Once she settles into her minor role, she’s asked to play her cello (alongside a violinist and violist) at an investors’ event, and it’s clear even then that the music gig is more about the people in charge finding a suitable place for her than anything else.

(In case you were wondering: yes, it is in fact weird that she packed up and brought her cello to Egypt. But there is a good reason for it!)

The whole book is an exercise in subtlety. I mean, honestly, when you consider that the first third of the book centers around France preparing for a semi-formal event where she’s going to play some Beethoven, it’s remarkable that the author is able to make everything so engaging. Thanks to a colorful cast of characters and France’s narration, the book thrives on these mild story beats.

The ending takes some unexpected but satisfying turns. There are a lot of supernatural elements at play here, also subtle, which seem so out of place (in a good way!) sometimes that they’re genuinely creepy when they occur. I’m sorely tempted to lay out some examples, but I don’t want to spoil anything — read it!

Most books have a slump in the pacing somewhere, and this book is no exception, but the slump here is brief. The majority of the book is so crystal clear about what’s going on that chapters 10 and 11 kinda dragged. They were fuzzy and unclear, like someone recalling an alien abduction while under regressive hypnotherapy. Not bad by any stretch, but I was glad to make it to chapter 12.

I recommend this book to just about anyone. Whether you’re into Egypt, the supernatural, music, the 1960s, or conversations with inanimate objects (*wink*), you’ll have an excellent time. Great characters, great cast, and a great, subtle plot in the background.

Audrey Driscoll, Buy:Amazon US – And:  Amazon UK – follow Audrey: Goodreads – Website:Audrey Driscoll

Meet Darlene Foster

Growing up on a ranch near Medicine Hat, Alberta, Canada, Darlene Foster dreamt of writing, travelling the world, and meeting interesting people. She also believed in making her dreams come true. It’s no surprise she’s now the award-winning author of Amanda Travels, a children’s adventure series featuring a spunky twelve-year-old who loves to travel to unique places. Readers of all ages enjoy following Amanda as she unravels one mystery after another. When not travelling herself, Darlene divides her time between the west coast of Canada and the Costa Blanca, Spain with her husband and entertaining dog, Dot.

A selection of books by Darlene Foster

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One of the recent reviews for Amanda in Holland

Apr 18, 2020 Hayley rated it Five Stars

Amanda in Holland was such a fun read! I’ll admit I was a bit bias in picking this title — my family is Dutch, so the title caught my eye instantly. I learned more about the culture there than I’ve ever learned from my family (sorry, Dad!). But my favorite part is the way Foster seamlessly ties history, culture, and mystery all in one. This book also makes the location its own character, which I love. Overall, the story had a very Nancy Drew feel to it.I didn’t realize that this book is part of a series, but now that I know, I’ll definitely be reading the others in the series.

Darlene Foster, Buy: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Website/BlogDarlene Foster WordPress – Goodreads: Goodreads – Twitter: @supermegawoman

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope that you have enjoyed meeting more of the authors in the Cafe and Bookstore and discovering their books. Thanks Sally.