Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – #Reviews – #Supernatural John W. Howell, #Pilgrims Noelle Granger, #Southernculture Claire Fullerton.


Welcome to the Friday Edition of the Cafe and Bookstore with recent reviews for authors on the shelves.

The first book  today with a recent review is  Eternal Road: The Final Stop by John W. Howell..

About the book

James Wainwright picks up a hitchhiker and discovers two things 1. The woman he picks up is his childhood sweetheart, only Seventeen years older. 2. He is no longer of this world.

James began a road trip alone in his 1956 Oldsmobile. He stops for a hitchhiker only to discover she is his childhood sweetheart, Sam, who disappeared seventeen years before. James learns from Sam falling asleep miles back caused him to perish in a one-car accident. He also comes to understand that Sam was taken and murdered all those years ago, and now she has come back to help him find his eternal home.

The pair visit a number of times and places and are witness to a number of historical events. The rules dictate that they do no harm to the time continuum. Trying to be careful, they inadvertently come to the attention of Lucifer who would love to have their souls as his subjects. They also find a threat to human survival and desperately need to put in place the fix necessary to save mankind.

The question becomes, will James find his eternal home in grace or lose the battle with Satan for his immortal soul and the future of human life with it? If you like time-travel, adventure, mystery, justice, and the supernatural, this story is for you.

A recent review for the book

Barbara W. Burke5.0 out of 5 stars If you want an exciting new adventure, then this is the book for you!  Reviewed in the United States on December 25, 2020

This is an amazing read! The first two pages lead one into one direction, then, suddenly off into an exciting new direction. Hardly able to put the book down. Highly recommended for those wanting a completely new adventure, unlike anything one has read, before.

Read the reviews and buy the book:  Amazon US  –   And : Amazon UK

Other books by John Howell

 Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon USand : Amazon UK – Goodreads: John Howell Goodreads Blog: John W. Howell. com – Twitter@HowellWave

The next recent review today is for The Last Pilgrim by Noelle Granger.

About the book

This book captures and celebrates the grit and struggle of the Pilgrim women who stepped off the Mayflower in the winter of 1620 to an unknown world – one filled with hardship, danger and death. The Plymouth Colony would not have survived without them.

Mary Allerton Cushman was the last surviving passenger of the Mayflower, dying at age 88 in 1699.

Mary’s life is set against the real background of that time. The Last Pilgrim begins from her father’s point of view – she was, after all, only four when she descended into the cramped and dank living space below deck on the Mayflower – but gradually assumes Mary’s voice, as the colony achieves a foothold in the New England’s rocky soil.

What was a woman’s life like in the Plymouth Colony? The Last Pilgrim will tell you.

A recent review for the book

Kindle Customer 5.0 out of 5 stars A most interesting read.  Reviewed in the United States on December 31, 2020

I thoroughly enjoyed the entire experience though did become confused at times as to the relationships of people. I wonder if there was much inbreeding or if some of the religious rules were in effect against kinsmen marrying.

The frequent deaths especially of the women in childbirth was heart wrenching. The constant work for the good wives was unimaginable as compared to today’s times. We live such a cooshy life nowadays. With perinatal death and or maternal death grounds for malpractice.

The thoroughness of the research and attention to details was admirable. I could imagine myself in the house, garden or fields while I read this book. I would highly recommend this book as both an enthralling look into our past as well as emotional journey through the eyes of a wonderful woman’s life.

Thank you Noelle, for your fantastic journey you allowed us to accompany you on. It will stay with me for a very long time.

Read the reviews and buy the book:Amazon US – And:Amazon UK

Also by N.A. Granger

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK Blog:Sayling Away – Goodreads:Noelle A. Granger – Twitter:@NAGrangerAuthor

The final author today is Claire Fullerton with a review for her novel Little Tea.

About the book.

Southern Culture … Old Friendships … Family Tragedy

One phone call from Renny to come home and “see about” the capricious Ava and Celia Wakefield decides to overlook her distressful past in the name of friendship.

For three reflective days at Renny’s lake house in Heber Springs, Arkansas, the three childhood friends reunite and examine life, love, marriage, and the ties that bind, even though Celia’s personal story has yet to be healed. When the past arrives at the lake house door in the form of her old boyfriend, Celia must revisit the life she’d tried to outrun.

As her idyllic coming of age alongside her best friend, Little Tea, on her family’s ancestral grounds in bucolic Como, Mississippi unfolds, Celia realizes there is no better place to accept her own story than in this circle of friends who have remained beside her throughout the years. Theirs is a friendship that can talk any life sorrow into a comic tragedy, and now that the racial divide in the Deep South has evolved, Celia wonders if friendship can triumph over history.

A recent review for the book

Reviewed in the United States on December 30, 2020

I’ve just discovered a rare gem!

Beloved author, Pat Conroy left behind a legacy that weaves it’s way through so much of southern fiction, but I trust he stopped by Claire Fullerton’s pen and whispered some of his wisdom! The proof is in her novel “Little Tea”!

She has that same knack of real-life, honest storytelling wrapped in beautifully eloquent prose. Every word being composed so harmoniously with the next.

So refreshing!

Speaking of racism and social issues with both gentle heart and pulsating tension.

Love and relationships are lovely, exuberant, determined and even heartbreaking. When everything is cracking open like a broken glass on the hot Memphis asphalt, the sun is still shining through it.

Claire Fullerton speaks of the South and being a Southerner as a status only a few can attain. Almost a deserving right! The highest of honors! I love that she reveres the South so deeply and sincerely. She writes about the South with such love, you can sense her devotion! She elevates the Southern voice!! Claire is a true gift to both Southern and Literary Fiction!

I was completely enamored and enraptured with this story and each of characters. I even found myself beginning to put the book down one night, only to chose not to because I was just too captivated with even the places and more!! I just couldn’t sleep!

That same night, I found I was reading the last sentence, and I knew without a doubt I had been introduced to one of the most talented writers of our time!

In closing, I look forward to reading Claire Fullerton’s Collection! Time to order every single book!

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – And : Amazon UK

Also by Claire Fullerton

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – and: Amazon UK – Follow Claire : Goodreads – website: Claire Fullerton – Twitter: @Cfullerton3

 

Thank you for dropping by today and I hope you are leaving with some books.. thanks Sally.

 

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Author Updates – Reviews – #1960s Jane Risdon, #Mystery Amy M. Reade, #Thriller Gwen M. Plano.


Welcome to the Wednesday edition of the Cafe and Bookstore with recent reviews for authors on the shelves.

The first author today with a recent review is Jane Risdon for the 1960s Only One Woman..co-written with Christina Jones.

About the book

June 1968. Renza falls head over heels for heartthrob guitarist Scott. But, after a romantic summer together, they are torn apart when Renza’s family moves away.

December 1968. On the night she believes to be her last, Stella meets Scott at a local dance. He’s the most beautiful boy she’s ever seen and if this one night is all they have, she’ll take it.

As the colourful and final year of the sixties dawns, the question is: can there be only one woman for Scott?

One of the recent reviews for the book

Trekker Girl 4.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating insight into the 1960s  Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 1 December 2020

Written from the the diaries of two young women who are in love with the same man, this is an interesting collaboration between these two authors. Seamlessly moving from one perspective to the other, this book kept me interested and intrigued by the possible outcomes.

I loved the 60s setting with music, fashion and culture references that rang true to that era and the age of the two girls.

A blast back to the swinging 60s and a fun read which I thoroughly enjoyed and I will be searching out other titles from both of these authors.

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon UK – And: Amazon US

Also by Jane Risdon

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon UK – AndAmazon US–   Blog:Jane Risdon WordPressGoodreads:Jane Risdon Goodread –  Twitter: @Jane_Risdon

The next author is Amy M. Reade with a review for her Christmas themed The Worst Noel (The Juniper Junction Holiday Mystery Series Book 1)

About the book

Christmas is supposed to be a time of peace, love, and joy, but for Lilly Carlsen, this Christmas is murder.

As a single mom, small business owner, and president of the local Chamber of Commerce, the last thing she needs is to find a dead body on the floor of her jewelry shop on the busiest shopping day of the year. And as if that isn’t enough, Lilly has to deal with a deadbeat ex-husband, a mother with declining mental health, and two teenagers.

But when a second body turns up, Lilly finds herself squarely in the crosshairs of suspicion. Can she figure out who killed the victims before she becomes one herself? And will her family’s Christmas be merry…or scary?

One of the recent reviews for the book

Lori Caswell/Dollycas VINE VOICE 5.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining Read  Reviewed in the United States on December 22, 2020

Dollycas’s Thoughts – Lily Carlsen has made a good life for herself and her teenagers, Laurel and Tighe after her ex decided years ago that family life wasn’t for him. Her brother Bill is a police officer in town and they both watch over their mother who lives down the street from Lily. The kids are a big help too as the tentacles of dementia start to take control of their grandmother. The family also has a lovable pup named Barney.

Lilly owns the local jewelry store and is president of the Chamber of Commerce. She works long hours but has raised some really good kids. She has been getting ready for the holiday rush and is excited about the Black Friday shoppers But when she arrives at her store she finds the back door unlocked and as she ventures inside notices the vault is open and a dead body on the showroom floor. The body belongs to a woman Lilly has a history with through the chamber. So even with a brother on the force, she finds herself a suspect in the woman’s murder.

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK

 Also by Amy M. Reade

51dikCmd-RL._UY250_House of the Hanging Jade cover with USA Today

Read the reviews and buy the books : Amazon US  – And: Amazon UK – Blog: Amy Reade WordPress  –  Goodreads: Amy Reade Goodreads –  Twitter: @readeandwrite

The final author today with a recent review is Gwen M. Plano for The Culmination: a new beginning – this is the third book in The Contract thriller series.

About the book

The Culmination, a new beginning is the third book in The Contract thriller series. After an assassination attempt on an Air Force base in northern California, tensions mount. Heads of state meet to craft a denuclearization agreement. The meetings between these nuclear powers take a murderous turn. A nefarious conspiracy re-emerges and leads the characters into the heart of the Middle East, where they encounter the unexpected and find a reason for hope.

One of the recent reviews for the book

“The Culmination” is the third book in the Contract Series. I loved all the books, but this one topped them. It touched me on a level of reality and fear, bringing the idea of hope in our current cold social climate. It starts after the second book and an assassination attempt. There is a group determined to cause mayhem and stop anyone in their way, including heads of state. There’s not only exciting action but developing relationships and political intrigue. I found a lot of what was going on in the story relevant for current times. Where Ms. Plano took this story is a place where I could imagine the right things being done in the middle of chaos. I loved the American Vice President with her logic and heart. Beautifully written and thought-provoking with scenarios all too familiar, some heartbreaking, and some tender. This book not only scared me but offered an optimistic option at the same time. I highly recommend it and the whole series.

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK

Other books by Gwen Plano

Read the reviews and buy the books: : Amazon UKand  : Amazon US – follow Gwen : Goodreads –website:Gwen PlanoTwitter: @gmplano

 

Thanks for dropping in today and I hope you will be leaving with some books thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Reviews – #Romance Jacquie Biggar, #Supernatural Jessica Bakkers, #Paranormal Jan Sikes


Welcome to the first of the Cafe and Bookstore updates for the week with news and updates for authors on the shelves.

The first author today is USA Today Bestselling author Jacquie Biggar with a recent review for  Perfectly Imperfect.

About the book

What happens when Miss Perfection clashes with Mr. Casual?
Chaos!

Georgina’s in trouble. The startup money she borrowed from her parents’ retirement fund is long gone and her dream of owning the next big thing in market-to-table cuisine disappeared with it.
Her only choice? Merge her company into the corporate giant, CLO, and hope she isn’t making a huge mistake.

Rhys Turner is his father’s progeny, born and raised to take over the empire when his dad deems him ready. Rhys doesn’t mind the fast-paced lifestyle, though he detests the coldblooded mantra of the corporation- Buy from the weak and sell at a profit.
It’s made his family millions. But now, just when CLO’s reins are within reach, he’s run into the one woman who could change everything.

A delightful mixture of women’s fiction, chick-lit, romantic comedy, and New adult, Perfectly Imperfect has something for every reader.

One of the recent reviews for the book

D. W. Peach5.0 out of 5 stars Well-crafted spunky romance  Reviewed in the United States on December 15, 2020

What a delightful feel-good romance. This is an hour-long read, a fun foray into the contentious relationship between two business people, one trying to hold on to her dream company while the other one is tasked with selling it out from under her. Of course, sparks fly – the bad kind as well as the good.

I whipped through this book. The characters were colorful, both likable, and I loved their sarcasm and spats. The secondary characters were just right and wonderfully well-rounded for such a short book. The plot isn’t overly complex, and there isn’t any of the belabored drama-queen, helpless-female stuff that sometimes makes me roll my eyes. Instead, it struck me as carefully-crafted with just the right details to give a vivid sense of place, character, and action. Honestly, this spunky romance was one of the best I’ve read. Highly recommended.

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK

A small selection of Jacquie’s books

Read the reviews and buy the books:  Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Follow Jacquie : Goodreads – website: Jacquie Biggar – Twitter: @jacqbiggar

The next book today with a recent review is  Guns of Perdition – The Armageddon Showdown Book 1 by Jessica Bakkers. I reviewed the book and this fast paced supernatural thriller with all guns blazing would make a great gift.

About the book

IT TAKES GRACE TO HUNT WHEN IT’S DARKSOME

Jessie expects he’ll be forever cleaning up after the cowpokes of the Bad Hoss Saloon. That’s until the day a drifter strides through the doors, and blows away a blood-sucking demon, along with Jessie’s belief in an everyday world. Jessie is captivated by the enigmatic Grace, with her pearl-handled revolvers, and wolf companion. He throws in his normal life and follows her across the Wild West, as she hunts down and slays the evil creatures that roam the frontier.

Along the way, they seek the aid of a Native American warrior, cross paths with a Cajun Queen, and encounter a small-town tycoon with a deadly hunger for gold. Animosity and distrust plague Grace and Jessie, and their strange group of allies, but they must put their differences behind them if they’re to have any hope of finding and defeating the frontier’s true evil, the Darksome Gunman.

The Armageddon Showdown is a dark-fantasy, weird western series of epic proportions, focusing on the age-old battle between good and evil, though in the Wild West, it’s not always clear just who is good and who is evil.

Join Grace Dyer and her band of miscreants as they battle demons and demi-gods, in the frontier’s deadliest conflict…the Armageddon Showdown.

One of the recent reviews for the book

In Jessica Bakkers’ Guns of Perdition, Book 1 in The Armageddon Showdown (2020), female bounty hunter Grace Dyer and her oversized dire wolf (not really a dire wolf but with those characteristics) Kava are tracking a ruthless killer who murdered Grace’s parents when she was only eleven. Now, she’s grown up, trained herself to be one of the best bounty hunters of demons and monsters in the Old West, and she wants revenge. She funds her search for this personal demon by capturing the worst of the magical monsters, those that often look benign but are as bad as they come. In one small town, hunting a fanged demon that looks like a beautiful saloon girl, Grace gets unexpected help from a seventeen-year-old bar cleaner, Jessie. He saves her life and she allows him to tag along as she pursues her trade despite that he is not brave, not gun-savvy, and doesn’t even own a hat to keep the sun off. Why? He confesses he has nowhere else to go. Grace, Kava, and Jessie become a fighting unit, each with their own strengths but all with one goal: justice for the murders of Grace’s parents.

Though at its most basic, Guns of Pardition is a paranormal story, it includes plenty of popular western elements–guns, bounty hunters, saloons, whores, owlhoots, and the natural justice that tamed the West. Grace is strong, clever, and tenacious. She doesn’t back off and has a few tricks up her sleeve that few bounty hunters or lawbreakers can match. Recommended for those who love wolf stories, Westerns, and original paranormal.

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – More Reviews: Goodreads – Author pages: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – WebsiteJessicaBakkers.com – Facebook – The Written Word – Twitter@JessicaBakkers

The final author today is Jan Sikes  with an early review for her latest release Ghostly Interference (The White Rune Series)

About the book

Jag Peters has one goal in his quiet comfortable life—to keep his karma slate wiped clean. A near-miss crash with a candy apple red Harley threatens to upend his safe world. He tracks down the rider to apologize properly. Slipping into a seedy biker bar, he discovers the rider isn’t a “he”, it’s a “she”, a dark-haired beauty.

Rena Jett is a troubled soul, who lives in a rough world. She wants no part of Jag’s apology, but even while she pushes him away, she is attracted to him. When he claims to see a ghost—her brother—can she trust him? And could her brother’s final gift, a magical rune stone with the symbol for “happily ever after” have the power to heal her wounds and allow opposites to find common ground—perhaps even love?

One of the early reviews for the book

D.L. Finn 5.0 out of 5 stars A well-written tale that I recommend. Reviewed in the United States on December 22, 2020

Ghostly Interference” is Ms. Sikes’ debut fictional novel. I’ve read all her memoirs and short stories and have loved them, so I was excited about this book. It didn’t disappoint with the drama and otherworldly presence. My favorite character was Rena, a hard-working waitress who rides a red Harley. I had to warm up to Jag, who was cautious and in an unpleasant situation at work. Luckily, his mother had left him open to excepting otherworldly experiences. Both characters grew, and their interactions had a nice spark. The realistic details put into the story really captured what it’s like to ride on a motorcycle, along with a glimpse into the music world. This is not only a steamy romance, but it gives the characters room to become who they are, with a paranormal nudge. The end had me on the edge of my seat, and I’m looking forward to seeing where this series goes. A well-written tale that I recommend.

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK

A small selection of books by Jan Sikes

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – And : Amazon UK – Website: Jan SikesGoodreads: Jan on Goodreads – Twitter: @rijanjks

 

Thank you for visiting today and I hope you will be leaving with some books.. thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Weekly Round Up – January 3rd – 9th 2020 – Breakfast Show, 1960s, Poetry, Book Reviews, Health and Funnies


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

A rollercoaster of a week on many fronts and hard to stay hopeful in a time of such unrest and the pandemic. Ireland saw cases rise to around 500 mark in May during the first wave but yesterday recorded over 8000 new cases. With only 5 million population the cases so far have shown that being a small nation makes it just as hard to contain.

This does not of course compare to the over 300,000 new case in the USA and similar horrific figures in Europe and other countries. Vaccines are slowly being rolled out but the logistics of vaccinating whole countries, to ensure that those in most need such as front line health carers, those most at risk. We are down the list without any underlying health issues and being under 70, and also I cannot have the Pfizer vaccine as I have a severe allergy to both Penicillin and Tetanus.

Allergy warnings have been issued by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) following reports of anaphylaxis among two recipients of the vaccine last week.

The head of the MHRA, Dr June Raine, said: “Any person with a history of anaphylaxis to a vaccine, medicine or food should not receive the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine.

“A second dose should not be given to anyone who has experienced anaphylaxis following administration of the first dose of this vaccine.”  allergies and Covid vaccine pfizer.

I firmly believe in vaccinations but will wait until the Oxford variant is available.. and if you would like to know more about how the various Covid vaccines work with out bodies to help protect us then these articles are very helpful.

How the Various Vaccines Work – AndHow does the Oxford Vaccine Work

Other news on the personal front.
Life is Like a Bowl of Cherries: Sometimes Bitter, Sometimes Sweet by [Sally Cronin]

One of the bright spots of the week has been the wonderful support of the writing community who have been kind enough to share their thoughts on Life is Like a Bowl of Cherries.. and if you would like to read their reviews you can find some on Goodreads and all of them on my book pageThank you for the motivation.

And I do have more news on the book. We have always printed my books independently and uploaded to Amazon and paid them commission to sell the books. However, despite Ireland not being part of the UK and without VAT on printed books at the time, Amazon said that to continue to sell print books we would need to register for VAT.. so we removed my print books and I have sold them at fairs and via paypal.

So we decided to try out Amazon’s print on demand and so for those who would like the book in print it should be available in the next week. Looking forward to seeing how it works out.

On the blog and book promotion front for you….

Since this series began in January 2018 there have been over 1000 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, family and the most recent series was #PotLuck where I shared a random selection of different topics.

In this series I will be sharing posts from the last 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.

How to feature in the series?2021 – Pot Luck – Posts from Your Archives

As always my thanks to William Price King, Debby Gies and Daniel Kemp for their contributions this week and so pleased that the new Breakfast Show is going down well.

And of course many thanks to you for visiting and leaving your comments and sharing around the usual haunts.. it is much appreciate..

This week’s posts.

The Breakfast Show with William Price King and Sally Cronin – Chart Hits 1960 – Part One.

The Sewing Circle Part Two

The Other Side of Heaven

Chesebro’s Poetry Challenge – Butterfly Cinquain – ‘Hope’ by Sally Cronin

April 1986 – San Diego – Trash Can Punch and Sea World

#Mystery #Paranormal – The Light (Wake-Robin Ridge Book 4) by Marcia Meara

Past Book Reviews 2020 – #SouthernFiction – Little Tea by Claire Fullerton

New Author on the Shelves – D.L. Cross – The Forgotten -Astral Conspiracy: (An Alien Invasion Science

New Release – #Western #Romance Sandra Cox, #Fantasy Vashti Quiroz-Vega, – Review #Poetry Balroop Singh

#YAMystery D.L.Finn, #Memoir Liesbet Collaert, #Family Judith Barrow.

Reviews – #PostApocalyptic Terry Tyler, #Fantasy C.S Boyack, #Memoir D.G. Kaye

#Chocolate Robbie and Michael Cheadle, #Fishing Dawn Doig, #Wolves Elizabeth Jade

Monday 4th January 2020 – Carol Taylor, Jennie Fitzkee, Judith Barrow

Wednesday January 6th 2021 – Stevie Turner, Mary Smith, Jean Lee

Friday 8th January 2021 – Carol Taylor, Joy Lennick, Patricia Furstenberg

Getting the year off to a healthy start – Part One by Sally Cronin

Getting the year off to a healthy start – Part Two

Smorgasbord Laughter Lines – January 5th 2021 – Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin – Pajamas and Word Games

January 7th 2021 – Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin – Crafting and Teenage Imaginations!

January 8th 2021 – Another Open Mic Night with author Daniel Kemp – Poachers and Retirement speeches…

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – Reviews – #PostApocalyptic Terry Tyler, #Fantasy C.S Boyack, #Memoir D.G. Kaye


Welcome to the Friday Cafe and Bookstore update with recent reviews for authors on the shelves and a new release.

The first author today is Terry Tyler with a recent review for Patient Zero a collection of stand alone short stories.

About the book

The year is 2024.
A mysterious virus rages around the UK.
Within days, ‘bat fever’ is out of control.
Patient Zero is a collection of nine short stories featuring characters from the post apocalyptic Project Renova series. All stories are completely ‘stand alone’.

1. Jared: The Spare Vial
Jared has two vaccinations against the deadly virus: one for him, one for a friend…

2. Flora: Princess Snowflake
The girl with the perfect life, who believes in her father, the government, Christian charity and happy endings.

3. Jeff: The Prepper
What does a doomsday ‘prepper’ do when there is nothing left to prepare for?

4. Karen: Atonement
She ruined her sister’s last day on earth, and for this she must do penance.

5. Aaron: #NewWorldProblems
Aaron can’t believe his luck; he appears to be immune. But his problems are far from over.

6. Ruby: Money To Burn
Eager to escape from her drug dealer boyfriend’s lifestyle, Ruby sets off with a bag filled with cash.

7. Meg: The Prison Guard’s Wife
Meg waits for her husband to arrive home from work. And waits…

8. Evie: Patient Zero
Boyfriend Nick neglects her. This Sunday will be the last time she puts up with it. The very last time.

9. Martin: This Life
Life after life has taught the sixty year old journalist to see the bigger picture.

One of the recent reviews for the book

D. W. Peach 5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating and Chilling  Reviewed in the United States on December 10, 2020

I’ve been avoiding pandemic books (since there’s enough of that going around in real life these days), but decided to give this collection of nine short stories a try. Great decision (pats self on back). All of the stories take place in the same world, a place being ravaged by a “bat virus.” They read like vignettes, and I was completely drawn in by the characters and their situations. It was fascinating and chilling at the same time.

Each story focuses on a different character, often living through a different stage of the pandemic. Some of them are alone, others with family or friends. Some are highly prepared, others not so much. What I really enjoyed about the collection was how unique each story was and how believable! Yikes. I could absolutely see these tales happening in my neighborhood.

The deadly pandemic is the driving force behind the stories, but the characters bring their own situations, logic, and emotions into their choices. Not all of them survive, despite the best of plans, and for those who do, the world will never be the same. This isn’t a long read, and I recommend it to sci fi fans who enjoy a fictional pandemic and great writing.

Read the reviews and buy the collection: Amazon UK – And: Amazon US

A selection of other books by Terry Tyler

Read the reviews and buy the books:Amazon UK – And : Amazon US – Follow Terry Tyler: Goodreads Blog: Terry Tyler Blogspot – Twitter:@TerryTyler4

Now for a recent review for The Ballad of Mrs. Molony (The Hat Book 3) by C.S. Boyack

About the book

Lizzie and the hat are back, and this time they’re chasing vampires across a subculture of America. A pair of rodeo cowboys are holding a woman captive to use like a milk cow since they joined the undead.

The person who put them onto the trail is also a vampire, but he has to be the worst vampire in history. Is he really that pitiful, or is he setting a trap for our heroes? Does the woman even exists? Can Lizzie and the hat find her before she also takes up blood sucking?

Follow Lizzie and the hat as they use their cover band to stalk vamps across the country music scene.

One of the recent reviews for the book on Goodreads

Dec 16, 2020 Jessica Bakkers rated it Five Stars

I’m a huge fan of C.S. Boyack. From the moment I read “The Hat”, I was hooked, and after “Viral Blues” I concurred that these stories about a snarky talking hat and his symbiotic friendship with ‘gal-with-a-heart-of-gold’ Lizzie St Laurent, were my favourite stories in Boyack’s impressive repertoire. So, when I learned about a new ‘hat’ installment, “The Ballad of Mrs Moloney”, I was jazzed to say the least.

“Mrs Moloney” picks up where “Viral Blues” left off, with Lizzie and the Hat just doing their thing, working gigs, getting by, and obsessively shopping the internet for stuff a five-hundred-odd year old hat finds cool (forgive me if I’m off on the Hat’s age – his history is so damn rich it’s hard to keep track of his age, and you know, he hardly shows any wrinkles).

Lizzie and the Hat soon come across a sorry excuse for a vampire – Kevin – and after a few jests about the lad’s teeth (which makes me think he must have British ancestry), they decide to help the poor sod to find his sister who’s been kidnapped as take-out by a bunch of cowboy vampires. Sound weird? Yeah, well, it’s Boyack!

The story unfolds in an unhurried way, with Lizzie and her band taking on country music festivals and gigs to try and track down the vamps. This provides plenty of comedic fodder with lines like:

“Then we have their anthem, ‘Friends in Low Places.’ Believe me, play this one and they’ll all pay attention. They’ll all sing and give up on any riots they have on their minds. In fact, if you blow the lyrics, they won’t even notice because they’ll be singing them.”

Boyack does his usual excellent job of dropping music into the story (loving that ‘Bad Things’ got a mention), and again floors me with his acute understanding of the female brain (like Lizzie lamenting her ‘long face’ and how certain styles of hat don’t work for her). There’s humour aplenty, and though the Hat was a bit more grumpy (or morose) this go around, his and Lizzie’s relationship has really blossomed into a buddy cop relationship… or a long-suffering marriage. I can’t decide which.

Summing up, “The Ballad of Mrs Moloney” is a great read, especially if you’re a fan of Lizzie and the Hat, and cements why these characters are my favourites in the Boyack universe

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK

A selection of other books by C.S. Boyack

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – and :Amazon UK – Follow Craig: Goodreads – blog:Cold Hand BoyackTwitter@Virgilante

The final author today is D.G. Kaye with a recent review for her memoir Words We Carry

About the book

“I have been a great critic of myself for most of my life, and I was darned good at it, deflating my own ego without the help of anyone else.”

What do our shopping habits, high-heeled shoes, and big hair have to do with how we perceive ourselves? Do the slights we endured when we were young affect how we choose our relationships now?
D.G. takes us on a journey, unlocking the hurts of the past by identifying situations that hindered her own self-esteem. Her anecdotes and confessions demonstrate how the hurtful events in our lives linger and set the tone for how we value our own self-worth.
Words We Carry is a raw, personal accounting of how the author overcame the demons of low self-esteem with the determination to learn to love herself.

A recent review for the book

Luv2read 5.0 out of 5 stars A gem of a book  Reviewed in the United States on January 3, 2021

What starts with the author’s explanation of why she wrote the book: namely to share negative experiences and obstacles in which self-esteem issues and insecurities when faced and dealt with blossom to learning self-love; this is a remarkable revolutionary read. One I wish I would have read in my earlier teen years when I struggled with my own self-esteem issues. Self-perception baggage from wounded egos, what weighs us down, fester and damage the soul the author writes. So true. This is so well written that it’s not just an enlightening educational tool but a wonderful read from a woman not afraid to show her underbelly, huge heart, and she does it with much authenticity and talent. I resonated with so much of what she wrote in these enlightening pages, but what stands out the most is how I slid down the rabbit’s hole due to my desire to want to belong, to socially fit.

I suppose all of us who relate to this unfolding have a personal story of our own. Mine was rooted in a family dynamic that made it difficult for me to have friends to my home and consequently I missed out on social bonding that helps develop a strong sense of self. It wasn’t until later in life, in high school and university, that I encountered warm satisfying friendships. By then the damage was done. I just wish I had this book in my earlier years to have helped my younger, more formative self. Thankfully, it’s never too late to unwind wounds and deepen self-love, which is another thing I found from this beautifully powerful read. In summation, let me say I am grateful I had this recommended to me by a friend, someone whose words I respect. This gem of a book did not disappoint. Highly recommend.

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK

Other books by D.G. Kaye

Read the reviews and buy the books:Amazon USAndAmazon UKBlogD.G. WritesGoodreads: D.G. Kaye on Goodreads –  Twitter:@pokercubster

 

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

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – New Author on the Shelves – D.L. Cross – The Forgotten -Astral Conspiracy: (An Alien Invasion Science Fiction Series)


Delighted to welcome D.L. Cross/Staci Troilo to the Cafe and Bookstore with her books. Today I am featuring her latest release on December 21st written as D.L. Cross.  The Forgotten (An Alien Invasion Science Fiction Series) (Astral Conspiracy)

About the book

The Forgotten is a taut, fast-paced Indiana Jones meets Falling Skies style stand-alone thriller that spans the globe and digs deep into humanity’s past, unearthing clues to the aliens’ motives for invading our world.

One’s out of his element. The other’s out of allies. Both are out of time.

Colonel Jack Morley investigates anomalies for the US government. He’s less than thrilled to give up his long holiday weekend at the beach to travel to the middle of the Nevada desert for his fifty-first mission because he assumes it will be another wasted trip.

He couldn’t be more wrong.

CORE Director Victor Cannon is in charge of a secret facility in Nevada, and he hopes bringing in Morley will keep the government off his back long enough to accomplish both his agency’s mission and his personal goal.

It only makes the target on his back a brighter beacon.

Now Morley and Cannon are in a race against their own agencies and the clock if they hope to save the world. They’ve discovered the location of the Forgotten, but not everyone wants him found. And those who want him to stay lost in time will go to any lengths to make sure he stays that way.

Head over to buy the book: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK

The series is available in a box set

One of the reviews for the series

Mae Clair5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic series that screams to be filmed! Reviewed in the United States on November 15, 2020

This is a phenomenal series jam-packed with riveting characters, stellar intrigue, exceptional writing, and plots to blow your mind. The author does a deft juggling act, handling multiple plot threads that span alien invasion, edge-of-your-seat action, religious overtones, ancient artifacts, complex conspiracies, and more. I read and reviewed all five books separately, but the appearance of a box set is cause to celebrate. This is one series that screams to be filmed. I’m waiting for Netflix to gobble it up and splash it on my TV screen.

Read the reviews and buy the other books: Amazon US –  And: Amazon UK

A selection of books written as Staci Troilo

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US  –  And: Amazon UK – Follow D.L. Cross: Goodreads – Blog: Staci Troilo WordPress – Website: Staci TroiloTwitter@stacitroilo –

About D.L. Cross/Staci Troilo

Staci Troilo grew up in Western Pennsylvania writing stories and poetry in her free time, so it was no surprise that she studied writing in college. After receiving creative and professional writing degrees from Carnegie Mellon University, she went on to get her Master’s Degree in Professional Writing, and she worked in corporate communications until she had her children. When they had grown, she went on to become a writing professor, and now she is a freelance writer and editor.

Staci is a multi-genre author. Her fiction is character-driven, and despite their protests, she loves to put them in all kinds of compromising or dangerous situations. This includes writing a science fiction series as D.L. Cross.

D.L. Cross has loved science fiction ever since she was a young girl and fell for Major Don West on television’s Lost in Space. To this day, she still quotes the show, though her favorite lines were spoken by the robot and the antagonist. Parallel universes or alternate realities, aliens or dinosaurs, superpowers or super viruses, time travel or AI… no sci-fi theme is off limits and all of them fascinate her. You can find more information about all her identities and all her work at her website: Staci Troilo

 

Thank you for visiting today and I hope you will enjoy finding out more about Staci Troilo and her books.. thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – Reviews – #YAMystery D.L.Finn, #Memoir Liesbet Collaert, #Family Judith Barrow.


Welcome to the Wednesday Cafe and Bookstore update with recent reviews for authors on the shelves.

The first author today is D.L. Finn with one of the early reviews for her YA  mystery Dolphin’s Cave.

About the book

The dream always begins the same way for fifteen-year-old Coral Dover. She enters the ocean alone and ends up in a cave on the back of a dolphin. It’s happened every night for the last eight years since her parents disappeared. Coral longs to visit the place where her parents’ plane went down, and she finally gets her wish when her aunt takes her on a working vacation to Hawaii. When Coral notices unusual things happening around her, only one other person believes her. Will they discover the secret that could change everyone’s lives? Can Coral keep her family safe as she pursues her dream?

One of the early reviews for the book

D. W. Peach 5.0 out of 5 stars Magical tale for tweens and young teens  Reviewed in the United States on December 14, 2020

Coral is a teenager who’s lived with her aunt since her parents died in a mysterious plane crash in Hawaii. She has repeating dreams of riding dolphins to a golden city, but she always wakes up before the dream’s secrets are revealed. With another family, including their teenage kids, Ben and Beth, Coral and her aunt head to Hawaii for a vacation. Coral is determined to find out what happened to her parents and learn the meaning of her dreams.

The story is told from Coral’s POV. She’s a believable character and true to her age. There’s an appropriate focus on things teens enjoy, and her experiences with young love are sweet. She and her group enjoy some of the tourist-based highlights of Oahu and Maui, while in the background there are darker forces at work – several nefarious characters are spying on Coral and targeting her aunt.

The pace is moderate and the setting well researched. As the plot ramps up, the magical world of the golden city bursts in on an otherwise real-life narrative with all kinds of fantastical creatures like unicorns and dragons, healing powers and royalty. The murderous goals of the bad guys become clear as Coral learns the secrets of her dream and magical heritage. I was too “old” for this read, but do recommend it to tweens and young teenagers, especially girls

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK

A selection of other books by D.L. Finn

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Follow D.L. Finn: Goodreads – Website: D.L. Finn Author –  Facebook: D.L. Finn Author – Twitter: @dlfinnauthor

The next review today is for Liesbet Collaert and her memoir Plunge: One Woman’s Pursuit of a Life Less Ordinary. 

About the book

Tropical waters turn tumultuous in this travel memoir, as a free-spirited woman jumps headfirst into a sailing adventure with a new man and his two dogs.

Join Liesbet as she faces a decision that sends her into a whirlwind of love, loss, and living in the moment. When she swaps life as she knows it for an uncertain future on a sailboat, she succumbs to seasickness and a growing desire to be alone.

Guided by impulsiveness and the joys of an alternative lifestyle, she must navigate personal storms, trouble with US immigration, adverse weather conditions, and doubts about her newfound love.

Does Liesbet find happiness? Will the dogs outlast the man? Or is this just another reality check on a dream to live at sea?

###

Have you ever wondered how life could be if you had made different choices? If you didn’t marry early, commit to a large loan for the house, focus on your career, start a family?

Maybe you’re just curious about how a person thinking outside the box manages? A person without boundaries, striving to be flexible, happy, and free. What you are about to read is how one such person follows her dreams, no, her intuition, and how she survives her naivety, life altering twists, and a relationship in close quarters.

Plunge is a story of what happens when you go with the flow, when you have a bright idea – or thought you had one – and ride the waves of the unknown. Ready to hop aboard and delve in?

One of the recent reviews for the book

Jill Weatherholt 5.0 out of 5 stars Take the plunge, we only live once!  Reviewed in the United States on December 17, 2020

For several years, I’ve been a follower of Liesbet Collaert’s blog “Roaming About” where she shares the nomadic lifestyle she lives with her husband Mark. When I learned she was writing a memoir, I waited patiently, knowing it would be fantastic. Liesbet did not disappoint. From the first page of PLUNGE – One Woman’s Pursuit of a Life Less Ordinary, I was immediately drawn into their unique way of living.

Most people would think they’d hit the lottery if they were able to do whatever they wanted, or go anywhere they desired. Life on a catamaran or traveling the US by RV would be a dream come true for many. But despite the beautiful surroundings, life as a nomad comes with challenges and stress those living a routine 9 to 5 lifestyle could never imagine. Liesbet’s honesty and openness throughout the book is to be commended. She reveals her heart to the reader, making her story so much more than a travel memoir. It’s about questioning the choices we’ve made in life and what’s truly important to us.

This inspiring memoir is one you won’t be able to put down until you’ve reached the end. Of course, if you follow her blog, the story doesn’t end as she and Mark continue to share their adventures.

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Find more reviews on: Goodreads

Also by Liesbet Collaert

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon USAnd: Amazon UK –  Follow Liesbet: GoodreadsBlogs: Roaming About Cruising the World the way it is – Facebook pages: Personal Liesbet CollaertRoamingsabout – ItsIrie – Twitter: @LiesbetCollaert

The final author today is Judith Barrow with a review her latest book – The Memory.

About the book

Mother and daughter tied together by shame and secrecy, love and hate.

I wait by the bed. I move into her line of vision and it’s as though we’re watching one another, my mother and me; two women – trapped.

Today has been a long time coming. Irene sits at her mother’s side waiting for the right moment, for the point at which she will know she is doing the right thing by Rose.

Rose was Irene’s little sister, an unwanted embarrassment to their mother Lilian but a treasure to Irene. Rose died thirty years ago, when she was eight, and nobody has talked about the circumstances of her death since. But Irene knows what she saw. Over the course of 24 hours their moving and tragic story is revealed – a story of love and duty, betrayal and loss – as Irene rediscovers the past and finds hope for the future.

The new novel from the bestselling author of the Howarth family saga

One of the recent reviews for the book

Lizanne Lloyd 4.0 out of 5 stars Compelling story of 20th century women  Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 29 November 2020

Irene tells her story in dual time. Now in 2002 she has reached the end of her tether. Exhausted with taking care of her mother who suffers from dementia and incontinence and only sleeps fitfully, she relives a memory that her mother never mentions and she feels she must do something for her sister Rose, who died so many years before.

Irene had been offered the opportunity of a rewarding career as a teacher, as well as the love of Sam whom she had known all her life, but she has given up her happiness for the sake of her devotion to those she loves. First, she took care of Rose, who had Down’s syndrome, then when her Nanna became gravely ill, she nursed her. When faithful Sam gave her love and companionship she ended up providing care for his sick father and finally she was drawn back to her wayward mother, feeling compelled to live in the house which still seems to be haunted by Rose.

Seeing events through Irene’s eyes doesn’t prevent the reader from realising how badly she treats Sam. His patience is almost unbelievable until he takes time out, working away from home. When their long-awaited child fails to come, even the kindness of friends who give them a temporary home does not prevent Irene trapping herself with the mother she once loved before Rose was born.

This 20th century story addresses many problems of women in a time of great change. The urge to be a mother, carer and homemaker contrasts with the ambition to achieve and to make a difference. Society’s approval and understanding easily turns to disapproval and misunderstanding. At times tremendously sad, the novel also shows social features and friendship in a world before mobile phones, the internet and Netflix. In a tale full of “What ifs” it is good to see Irene finally moving forward in the new century.

Read the reviews and buy the book :Amazon UK – AndAmazon US

Also by Judith Barrow

   

Read the reviews and buy the books:Amazon US – and:Amazon UK – Follow Judith:Goodreads – blog: Judith Barrow – Twitter: @judithbarrow77

 

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope that you will be leaving with some books.. Thanks Sally.

 

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – New Release – #Western #Romance Sandra Cox, #Fantasy Vashti Quiroz-Vega, – Review #Poetry Balroop Singh


Welcome to the first of the Cafe and Bookstore updates this week and some new releases and reviews.

The first author with a new release is Sandra Cox with a western romance – Gwen Slade: Bounty Hunter.

About the book

Bounty hunter Gwen Slade always gets her man. Until she meets charming outlaw Jordie Kidd.

After Jordie saves her family, she finds she can’t in good conscience turn him in, even if he is worth a thousand dollars dead or alive. Instead she sets her sights on the meanest, most-wanted gang in Kansas. Gwen always works alone until she goes after the gang then finds herself partnering with an unlikely source.

This time around, not only her life, but her heart is on the line.

One of the early reviews for the book

D.L. Finn5.0 out of 5 stars This is an exciting Western romance that I didn’t want to end! Reviewed in the United States on December 17, 2020

Gwen is a young woman who’s raising her little brother with the help of a family friend, Chen. She took after her father, who was a Bounty Hunter. After a job, she comes home to a man who saved her family from a would-be robber. The hero, Jordie, leaves the minute the sheriff arrives. Gwen finds out that Jordie is wanted, but she doesn’t go after him after saving her family. Gwen wants to move to Montana and start a new life on a horse ranch, so she takes the job of catching three of the worst outlaw brothers.

I love Gwen’s strength and ability to take care of herself in a time when women were more dependent on men. Promising one last job to her little brother, she sets off, against the sheriff’s advice, to catch her outlaws and earn her big retirement payoff. She ends up with an unexpected partner. I love the relationship that develops between them on the trail.

There are great conversations and plenty of action. As the two learn about each other, a dog finds them. You can’t help but fall in love with these amazing characters or the dog. I didn’t expect a couple of twists, and the scenery was detailed, making me feel like I was along on the ride. This is an exciting Western romance that I didn’t want to end, but it did and very satisfactorily. I hope we aren’t done hearing from Gwen Slade. She’s a wonderful heroine. I highly recommend “Gwen Slade, Bounty Hunter.”

Read the reviews and buy the bookAmazon US – And: Amazon UK

A small selection of Sandra’s books

Read the reviews andbuy the books : Amazon UK –And: Amazon US- follow Sandra Cox: Goodreads – Blog: Sandra Cox Blogspot – Twitter:@Sandra_Cox

The next author with a new book is Vashti Quiroz-Vega and The Rise of Gadreel (Fantasy Angels Series Book 3)

About the book

In The Fall of Lilith, award-winning author Vashti Quiroz-Vega took readers inside the gates of heaven for a front-row seat to Lucifer’s rebellion. In Son of the Serpent, she introduced Dracúl, tormented offspring of fallen angels. Now, in The Rise of Gadreel, Quiroz-Vega is back with the next chapter in her Fantasy Angels saga—a gripping tale of hope and redemption set against the fiery backdrop of a demon’s insatiable thirst for power and revenge.

Lilith is gone, suffering the torments of the damned in hell. Satan, once known as Lucifer, endures endless agony in an earthly prison. Yet their foul legacy lives on, spread by a corrupted priesthood that uses the blackest magic to fan the flames of evil and hate throughout the world.

The former angel Gadreel, who fought and fell alongside Lilith and Lucifer, only to join Dracúl in his fight against them, is weary of war. Repenting of past sins, she wants nothing more than to be left in peace. But when a new threat to humankind arises, Gadreel is given the chance she has prayed for—the chance to earn God’s forgiveness.

Now, with the aid of Dracúl and a trio of uncanny allies—a man of air, a man of stone, and a woman of fire—at her side, Gadreel must find the courage to confront her past and forge a new future for herself . . . and the world.

Head over to buy the book: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK

Also by Vashti Quiroz Vega

One of the recent reviews for Son of the Serpent Book two of the Angel Series

Gwendolyn Plano5.0 out of 5 stars A story well-written and fiercely told… Reviewed in the United States on November 28, 2020

Author Quiroz-Vega’s second book of the Angels Series is powerful. It hits hard and runs, never stopping. I had to pause to take a breath and separate myself from some of the drama, but I felt compelled to read to the end. This remake of the Biblical story is curious but also believable. Well edited, well researched, I commend Quiroz-Vega on tackling this epic story.

Read the reviews and buy the books :Amazon US – and : Amazon UK –  Follow Vashti : Goodreads – website:Vashti – WordPress – Twitter: @VashtiQV

Now time for a recent review

And the final book today is the poetry collection Timeless Echoes by Balroop Singh with a recent review.

About the collection

Certain desires and thoughts remain within our heart, we can’t express them, we wait for the right time, which never comes till they make inroads out of our most guarded fortresses to spill on to the pages of our choice. This collection is an echo of that love, which remained obscure, those yearnings that were suppressed, the regrets that we refuse to acknowledge. Many poems seem personal because they are written in first person but they have been inspired from the people around me – friends and acquaintances who shared their stories with me.

Some secrets have to remain buried because they are ours
We do share them but only with the stars
The tears that guarded them were as precious as flowers
Soothing like balm on festering scars.

While there are no boxes for grief and joy, some persons in our life are more closely associated with these emotions. Their separation shatters us, their memories echo, we grieve but life does not stagnate for anyone…it is more like a river that flows despite the boulders. When imagination and inspiration try to offer solace, poetry that you are about to read springs forth.

A recent review for the collection

D. W. Peach 5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful poetry  Reviewed in the United States on December 13, 2020

I’ve read Singh’s poetry books Magical Whispers, and Moments We Love, both of which I thoroughly enjoyed. So, I decided to travel back in time a couple of years and dive into an older collection. The poems of Timeless Echoes reflect the poet’s same beautiful voice and reflective musings with a slightly more formal style.

The poems struck me as personal, a sharing of the many facets of love and relationships – the joys, but also the regrets and hurts, those which we carry with us, examine with older eyes, and come to know in a new way or let go. My favorites were the more free-flowing poems that struck a personal chord: Ageless Echoes, Illusional Calm, New Life, and A Letter. This generous collection of nearly sixty poems can be easily read in an afternoon, though they deserve to be savored.

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – And:Amazon UK

Also by Balroop Singh

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Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – and : Amazon UK – Follow Balroop : Goodreads – blog: Balroop Singh on WordPress – Twitter@BalroopShado

 

Thanks for dropping in today and I hope you will be leaving with some books.. thanks Sally.

 

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Weekly Round Up – December 27th 2020- January 2nd 2021 – Happy New Year, Rock ‘n’ Roll, Books and funnies


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

If I have not already wished you Happy New Year, then please accept my wishes for a fantastic 2021.. in the hopes that it will be better behaved than 2020.. I posted a little tribute to the heroes of the year, and to our pets who have been there with us all the way. There were a few funnies and music of course to mark the occasion..

Happy New Year’s Eve – 2020 in the rear view mirror

My thanks as always to you for visiting and sharing the posts.. and this year has been made special by the warmth and kindness of the writing community…something to be treasured.

On with the posts from the week…and I hope you will join William Price King and myself on Tuesday for the new Breakfast Show with music and news from the 1960s.

Get your rock ‘n’ roll boots on with my top five picks by Sally Cronin

March 1986 – Pool Parties, lost puppies, New Furniture

What’s in Name? Ifan and the Black Sheep by Sally Cronin

What’s in Name? – Kenneth – A Love for Life by Sally Cronin

The Sewing Circle Part One.

#Fantasy – Lords of Chaos (Unraveling the Veil Book 3) by D.Wallace Peach

Past Book Reviews 2020 – #Family #Mystery – Watching Glass Shatter by James J. Cudney

Past Book Reviews 2020 – #Fantasy – The Hat by C.S. Boyack

29th December 2020 – D.L.Finn, Elizabeth Merry, Jan Sikes

January 1st 2021 – #Books and more Books – Amy M. Reade, Jessica Norrie, Mary Smith

#Suspense Sandra J. Jackson, Reviews – #Supernatural Jessica Bakkers, #WWII Marina Osipova,

New Release – #Fairies Teagan Riordain Geneviene, #Family James J. Cudney, #1960s #Thriller Ted Myers

#Romance Ritu Bhathal, #Paranormal Romance Stevie Turner, #Poetry Denise O’Hagan

#NewAuthor Marketing Tips – Making the most of Twitter

The Children’s Reading Room – New Author – #Emotions – Feel Like Eggs by Jeff Goodman

New Release – #Dragons Janice Spina,- Reviews – #Turtles Cynthia S. Reyes and Lauren Reyes-Grange, #Bears Frank Prem

Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin – December 29th 2020 – Working out and Animal comedians

 

Enjoy the weekend and look forward to seeing you next week.. stay safe and thanks … Sally

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Author Updates – Reviews #Romance Ritu Bhathal, #Paranormal Romance Stevie Turner, #Poetry Denise O’Hagan


Welcome to the Cafe and Bookstore update with new releases and reviews for authors on the shelves.

The first author today with a recent review is Ritu Bhathal for Marriage Unarranged.

About the book

It all started ended with that box…

Aashi’s life was all set. Or so she thought.

Like in the Bollywood films, Ravi would woo her, charm her family and they’d get married and live happily ever after.

But then Aashi found the empty condom box…

Putting her ex-fiancé and her innocence behind her, Aashi embarks upon an enlightening journey, to another country, where vibrant memories are created, and unforgettable friendships forged.

Old images erased, new beginnings to explore.

And how can she forget the handsome stranger she meets? A stranger who’s hiding something…

One of the recent reviews for the book

D. W. Peach 5.0 out of 5 stars A light-hearted jaunt to India  Reviewed in the United States on November 9, 2020

This is a light, romantic jaunt from England to India and back again. When Aashi finds a used condom in her fiancé’s bathroom, the wedding is suddenly off. Her family is angry and embarrassed, but they support her decision. A trip to India, originally to purchase a wedding gown, becomes a vacation for Aashi and a chance to unwind and heal. Her two brothers and her best friend Karin go along.

The romantic story is fairly straightforward, and it unfolds at a leisurely pace. What held my attention was the story’s immersion in India’s rich culture and setting, specifically the bustling city of Delhi. The main characters are England born and raised, so the influences of their dual cultures were interesting to see played out, and the details of life in India were fascinating. Bhathal clearly incorporated a wealth of personal experience into the narrative.

The characters are all likeable, except for the cheating fiancé, though I felt a twinge of sympathy for him by the end. All in all, this story was about family, culture, self-esteem and independence, love and friendship. Recommended for readers of romance and women’s lit.

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon UK – And: Amazon US

Also by Ritu Bhathal

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon UK – andAmazon US- Blog: Ritu Bhathal WordPress Follow Ritu: Goodreads – Twitter: @RituBhathal

The next author today is Stevie Turner with a recent review for her paranormal story Partners in Time

About the book

John Finbow, a successful writer, and his wife Kay move into Southcombe Rectory, a large Victorian house that has been empty since the 1960s. It had previously been owned by the Cuthbertson family who had lived there for generations. Their marriage is under strain, as John, 39 would like children before he gets too old, but Kay, 34, does not.
When John is working in his study soon after moving in, he is disturbed by the sight of a young woman who appears out of the blue on his sofa. Emily Cuthbertson, whose old bedroom is now John’s study, was 25 at the time of her death and the youngest of 8 offspring of the late Reverend Arthur Cuthbertson and his wife Delia. Emily had died in 1868 but is now unwilling to leave behind her old life on earth, due to having missed out on a family of her own whilst being a companion to her widowed mother. Emily is still desperate for a husband and children, and John is the answer to her dreams.

One hundred and thirty years separate them. Will Emily and John’s love survive time’s relentless march?

A recent review for the book on Goodreads

Dec 12, 2020 D.G. Kaye rated it Five Stars

Emily lived and died in the mid 1800s, except she never left her home. Meanwhile back in 1996 John got a nice advance for his screenplay and bought a big old house – an old rectory, for him and his wife Kay to live in – only, they weren’t alone. John meets Emily when she appears on his sofa in his office, and the two connect. John is wanting to have a child and Kay isn’t interested, while Emily who has missed out on marriage and having children is only too happy to give John a child.

Here’s where things go eerie. Emily’s ghost remained in the rectory and John’s office was once Emily’s bedroom. They fall madly in love, and the fun begins when John’s wife Kay discovers the relationship her husband has with the ghostly Emily and discovers John impregnated Emily.

It’s a paranormal story, so yes, the ghost gets pregant, and from there on become the shenanigans of a mischievous and possessive ghost where Emily’s place in John and Kay’s life becomes whacky and controled by Emily’s decisions and wraths.

Sure, we can ask why on earth Kay didn’t take off immediately after her husband confides in her what the heck is going on, but again, it’s a paranormal story. And despite the strangeness of the whole situation, I remained flipping the pages as I had to find out how this ghost could be stopped from controling and ruining lives.

There is plenty of suspense in this tale about a family haunted by a domineering ghost as Turner cleverly blends this story of family, and paranormal, into a thriller-like tale of love, possessiveness and intrigue that will keep us guessing at every plot twist. Can Emily be tamed? Will Kay hang around? Will Emily ever leave?

If you’re looking for a quick read that will keep you turning the pages and have you enjoying all the elements involved in this story, you will no doubt enjoy this book

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon UK – And: Amazon US

A selection of books by Stevie Turner

Read the reviews and buy the books : Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Follow Stevie : Goodreads  blog: Stevie Turner on WordPress – Twitter: @StevieTurner6

The final author today is Denise O’Hagan – with a recent review for her debut poetry collection The Beating Heart

About the collection

The Beating Heart is an allusion to the continuous pulsing of feelings that lie beneath the surface reality of our lives. This collection ‘slips into the lining’ of various experiences from a childhood in the ancient city of Rome, whose ‘famous walls bulged with sanctioned corruption’ to the loneliness of a London bedsit, ‘narrow as a capsule, a chilly low-cost limbo’, to the lure of a Sydney bushwalk, where ‘mist lies over the grass, the trees, the everything, as lightly as a suggestion’. The elegant assurance of these meditative and melodic lines remind us that poetry can be, as the author believes, ‘a form of music’.

One of the recent reviews for the collection on Goodreads

‘We look before and after’, wrote Shelley… but this poet doesn’t ‘pine for what is not’;
rather she shows how memory transforms lives through the constant toing and froing of consciousness. Punctuated with moments of stillness, when we ‘see into the life of things’, consciousness is not chronological. Such moments of recognition are both poet’s and readers’; they illuminate matters of the heart and of the head…and how intertwined the
two are.

Ordinary details resonate: ‘our mothers down the generations casually/
Pegged our lives out there on the washing line’, gloves clutch ‘at brown paper bags/
like holy relics’, ‘Under the trees, a man’s rough call/ Blurry with drink and loneliness,/
Lingers in the hot air.’

This poetry affirms the power of recall:
‘And so your photo
Still sits in front of me,
A haunting, present absence.’

Take the time to read and reflect; this small, still book is ‘a gift for the taking.’

Also by Denise O’Hagan

Read the reviews and buy the books:  Amazon UK  – And: Amazon US  Follow Denise:Goodreads –  website: Black Quill Press  Twitter: @DeniseOHagan3

 

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope that you have enjoyed the selection of books.. thanks Sally.