Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Weekly News – #Reviews -#Memoir Pete Springer, #FamilySaga M.L Holton, #Family Lisette Brodey


Welcome to the Cafe and Bookstore weekly news with recent reviews for authors on the shelves.

The first author today is retired teacher Pete Springer with his memoir They Call Me Mom

About the book

Who Will You Inspire Today? Teachers face this challenge and responsibility each day, but in the process, the author discovers that his students can also have a profound influence on him. Pete Springer takes you on his memorable thirty-one-year journey in education as an elementary school teacher and offers the many valuable life and teaching lessons he learned along the way. Get ready to laugh out loud at some of the humorous and memorable experiences that all teachers face, feel inspired by the inherent goodness of children, and appreciate the importance of developing a sense of teamwork among the staff.

Learn valuable tips for working with children, parents, fellow staff members, and administrators. This book is ideal for young teachers, but also a reminder to all educators of the importance and responsibility of being a role model. This book is a must-read for all new teachers and those teachers that need a reminder they are human! Mr. Springer educates others in his easy-to-read, story-like, first-hand manuscript. You will laugh, cry, and get motivated to be the best educator you can. After reading this, I have a better outlook on relationships with my colleagues and am reminded to savor every moment. -Tami Beall (Principal, Pine Hill School)

One of the recent reviews for the book

Jacqui Murray VINE VOICE 5.0 out of 5 stars Teachers are friend, advisor, mentor, mom, and so much more  Reviewed in the United States on April 26, 2021

Pete Springer’s memoir about his first years teaching is a delightful story for new teachers and will have experienced educators nodding along with him. His early experiences remind all of us of the joy inherent in teaching:

“This job required about as much brainpower as my tree planting experience.”
“This is the story of how I fell in love with teaching and the joys and challenges that this noble profession provided to me over the course of thirty-one years.”

He breaks the book into chapters every teacher will understand:

How did i get here
Setting up your classroom
Working with students
Working with colleagues
Working with your boss
Discipline

…and more. Aside from grading, parents, lunch duty, conferences, and yard duty, these are the biggest issues we teachers face. I’m a veteran teacher of thirty years and still I couldn’t wait to read Pete’s take on these timeless issues.

“Instead of saying, “Do everything my way, and you can become a successful teacher,” she was giving me her permission to find my way.”
“…storytelling was one of the most successful methods to get my students to pay attention.”
“…when we lose our calm, we are teaching them that it is okay to behave in this manner when something is not going right.”

Every new teacher will benefit from Pete’s daily experiences of what in the end results in a journey well traveled with more importance than most of us would car eto admit. Educational philosophies change. Favorite tools like iPads and Chromebooks change. What never changes is the fundamentals that Pete covers in this book:

“…tell the kids when I made similar mistakes growing up.”
“I do think that it is possible for parents or schools to provide too many rewards for kids.”

Overall an excellent book. If you’re a new teacher, I’d call this an essential read prior to your first day.  

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – and:Amazon UK – Read more reviews:Goodreads – Website: Pete Springer WordPressTwitter: @OfficerWoof

The next author is Margaret Lindsay Holton with a recent review for her sweeping family saga Trillium

About the book

Insightful, compelling, engrossing and enlightening, TRILLIUM intimately portrays the intertwining evolution of three very distinct families in the wine-making region known as Niagara in the Golden Horseshoe region, Ontario, Canada. …It all starts when 19-year-old Tom Hartford crosses over the mighty Niagara River in the 1750s … Readers will meet Maaka, an ingenious indigenous trapper; Franco, a dirt poor Sicilian labourer; Paddy O’Sullivan, a sweet-talking Irish con-artist and sweet Cate, the Hamilton port prostitute. And that’s just the beginning!

All unfolds with a pair of motherless red-headed twin brothers, a diabolical hate-filled drunkard, two devoted raven-haired sisters, an obsessed land developer, hard-working Mexicans, a blind man, a handsome Italian-Canadian wine-maker, a blessed treasure trove of attentive mothers, one demented vineyard-wandering wife – and a startlingly beautiful, simpleton savant, Anna. A 250 year-old story about three families: the good, bad … and ugly.

One of the recent reviews for the book

Reviewed in the United States on February 7, 2021

Trillium is the story of European settlers in Canada over a 250-year period from the 1700s through the early 21st century.

The sweeping saga follows three families in the wine-making region of Ontario. Those unfamiliar with Canadian history and culture might find it interesting that the trillium is the official flower of Ontario, and is considered a symbol of beauty, purity and recovery.

Holton’s historical novel has elements of romance, family drama and mystery. Her vivid descriptions of Canadian life, and the compelling characters she has created, make her epic tale even more fascinating.

Readers interested in Canadian history, or those interested in an exploration of wine-making, will find this an appealing read.  

Books by Margaret Holton

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Follow Margaret:Goodreads Twitter: @TrillLINDSAY

The final review today is for LIsette Brodey..and The Sum of our Sorrows.

About the book

In an idyllic suburb in Northern California, tragedy strikes the Sheppard family when Abby, the mother of three daughters and wife to Dalton, is killed in a car accident. Charlotte, the middle daughter, is in the car with her mother and survives without physical injury but remains deeply scarred on the inside.

Dalton tells Lily, his eldest daughter, that she must sacrifice long-awaited college plans and put her life on hold to take care of her sisters. Lily is torn between her devotion to family and an increasing need to find her place in the world — but how can she leave, knowing her family may crumble? Will her presence eventually cause more problems than it resolves?

The Sum of our Sorrows reveals how the aftermath of a family tragedy can precipitate sorrows never imagined. It is a tale of grief, hope, healing, coming-of-age, friendship, and survival. It is also a love story of two broken souls living through pain in search of better days and the renewal of one’s spirit.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I write characters as I hear them speak to me. Some of these stories contain non-gratuitous expletives and sexual references. This book also contains some situations that may be triggering to some readers. If this is not to your liking, please don’t read this book. Thank you.

A recent review for the book

In the blink of an eye, the Sheppard family is torn asunder. Abby, devoted wife and mother, is killed in a car accident. Her daughter, Charlotte, survives the accident without physical harm but what lies beneath the surface? Lily, the eldest daughter, must stay at home and help raise her two sisters. She’s torn between family love and making her own way in the world. What would her mother want her to do? As each member of the family deals with grief, pain, loss, memories, moving on, they must come to grips with life after Abby or their sorrows will drown their souls.

The Sum of Our Sorrows is a heart-wrenching piece of fiction with roots in real life. From the beginning, my soul ached for this family. As someone who has survived the sudden death of a parent, the emotional trauma each character deals with is authentic and realistic. Lisette Brodey is a gifted writer and her ability to connect with readers is impressive. There were times where I was so engrossed in the story, I forgot what I was doing. The plot moves at a good pace, not too rushed, with characters and dialogue I couldn’t stop reading. When I finished reading, I cried. An emotional story, The Sum of Our Sorrows brings into focus the magnitude of the human spirit. For some readers, it will be a life-changing read. For others, it will give renewed hope. I thoroughly enjoyed it and look forward to reading more from Lisette Brodey. Fans of family dramas and intelligent women’s fiction will love The Sum of Our Sorrows. Highly recommend! 

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

A small selection of books by Lisette Brodey

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Follow Lisette: Goodreads – Website/blog: Lisette Brodey – Twitter: @LisetteBrodey – Facebook: Lisette.Brodey

 

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

 

 

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Meet the Authors 2021 – #Thriller Chuck Bowie, #Family Lisette Brodey, #Guide Dog Ann Chiappetta


Since the last series of meet the authors in June last year another 25 authors have joined the Cafe and Bookstore. This is an opportunity to get to know them and their books a little better. I will also include their blog social media links and it would be great if you could follow them there too.

The first author today is Chuck Bowie who also writes under the pen name  of Alexa Bowie..

Meet Charles (Chuck) Bowie

Chuck Bowie graduated from the University of New Brunswick in Canada with a Bachelor Degree in Science. He lives on the East Coast of Canada. His writing is influenced by the study of human nature and how people behave, habits he picked up as his family moved nineteen times in his first twenty one years. Chuck loves food, wine, music and travel and all play a role in his work.

His writing will often draw upon elements of these experiences to round out his characters and plotlines. Chuck will at times share his thoughts with a brief essay, some of which can be found on his website. Chuck Bowie

His publisher has just received his latest novel , set in Ireland and England, entitled Her Irish Boyfriend, fifth in the international suspense-thriller series: Donovan: Thief For Hire. This follows The Body On The Underwater Road, Steal It All, Three Wrongs and AMACAT. All of his published novels have been paperback best-sellers in New Brunswick. He has just completed and published the first novel in a new cozy mystery series, set in a fictional town in New Brunswick, and is working on the follow-up in this series.

Chuck has recently finished a tenure with the National Board of The Writers’ Union of Canada. He’s a Fellow of the Kingsbrae International Residency for the Arts.

Chuck is married, with two sons. He and his wife Lois live in Fredericton, New Brunswick, in Canada.

A selection of books by Chuck Bowie

One of the recent reviews for Her Irish Boyfriend

by MJ LaBeff5.0 out of 5 stars Action Packed Thriller  Reviewed in the United States on December 29, 2020

Sean Donovan (Thief for Hire) doesn’t disappointment in Her Irish Boyfriend. His intellect, cunning instincts, and strength are what it takes to capture this ring of criminals and one ruthless Irish Boyfriend.

Gemma Trask, recently retired from New Scotland Yard, knows there’s something suspicious going on with Danny her boyfriend. He’s keeping his distance from Gemma which leads her to believe even more that he’s up to no good. She seeks help from her friend Donovan to uncover what criminal entanglements she believes Danny might be involved with. It all starts with a cell phone that leads them to multiple crimes. Soon Beth McLean (Donovan’s wife) and Constable Jimmy Flanagan (who analyzes behaviors) join the two in the hunt. The chase is on and involves multiple crimes and criminals. It’s a race to the very end in the pursuit of Danny.

There are so many twists and turns and action packed scenes where Donovan takes more than one tumble but comes out on top. What I always enjoy about the books in the series are the many lands and seas they take me across and in this story I especially liked the fight scenes and string of criminals caught along the way in the search for Her Irish Boyfriend.

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon CA – And: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Read more reviews: Goodreads – Website: Chuck Bowie – Facebook: Chuck Bowie –  Twitter:@BowieChuck

The next author is Lisette Brodey and I have read and can recommend The Sum of our Sorrows.

About Lisette Brodey

Lisette was born and raised in the Philadelphia area. She spent ten years in New York City, and now resides in Los Angeles.

She’s a multi-genre author of nine novels and one short story collection: Crooked Moon (General/Literary Fiction); Squalor, New Mexico (Coming-of-Age/Literary Fiction); Molly Hacker Is Too Picky! (Women’s Fiction/romantic comedy), The Desert Series: Mystical High; Desert Star; and Drawn Apart (YA paranormal/magical realism), Barrie Hill Reunion (Literary Fiction); Hotel Obscure: A Collection of Short Stories (Literary Fiction), Love, Look Away (Women’s Fiction/romantic comedy), and The Sum of our Sorrows (Contemporary Fiction.)

In addition to her nine novels and one short story collection, two more of Lisette’s short stories are published in an anthology: Triptychs (Book 3, The Mind’s Eye Series.)

A selection of books by Lisette Brodey

One of the recent reviews for The Sum of our Sorrows

Jan 30, 2021 Richard Schwindt rated it it was amazing
Lisette Brodey is one of those authors who writes for her readers. It occurred to me while reading The Sum of Our Sorrows that if you like to lose yourself in a good story featuring relatable people (and a few nasty ones), Brodey, and this book in particular, was for you. It begins in the immediate aftermath of a tragedy. Eighteen year old Lily, along with her 2 younger sisters lose their mother in car crash. Her fifteen year old sister is in the car and traumatized. Her father is devastated, drinking and seems to lose himself. In the weeks that follow Lily will lose her friends and dreams too. This family is tortured in its grief, and she has to hold it all together. The story follows her, and the subsequent events, leading to love, disclosure and redemption. I have rarely appreciated the writer’s commitment to good fluid prose more than in this book. It is a cliché to say that you were “captured by the story” but in this case I certainly was. I can see The Sum of Our Sorrows appealing to many diverse readers on that basis alone. Highly recommended, with tea by the garden.

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Follow Lisette: Goodreads – Website/blog: Lisette Brodey – Twitter: @LisetteBrodey – Facebook: Lisette.Brodey

And the final author today is Ann Chiappetta who joined the Cafe last August.

Meet Ann Chiappetta

Ann is an artist and often refers to her love of words as a natural compensation after losing her vision in 1993. Once a designer of acrylic displays and furniture, Ann trained her creative senses to flow over from the visual to the literary arts. Years later, she has become a poet and author, honing her talent in various mediums, including web content for nonprofits, regular bylines for online literary publications, poetry, anthologies and guest editing in online literary journals, just to name a few projects of which she
has contributed.

Ann possesses a master of science in Marriage and family therapy from Iona College and an undergraduate degree from the College of New Rochelle, both located in Westchester County, New York. She is currently employed as a readjustment and trauma counselor for combat veterans and their families. A guide dog handler and advocate, Ann volunteers her time representing people with visual impairments and guide dog users on various National, State and local boards of directors. A consultant and guest presenter, Ann visits schools promoting awareness and equality for people with disabilities. She is the 2015 recipient of the WDOM Spirit of Independence award.

Ann is available for speaking engagements and is knowledgeable on the following topics: *writing and creativity * independent publishing * recovering and adjusting to vision loss for individuals/families * sheltering people with visual impairments
*sheltering pets and service dogs * pet assisted therapy * training and working with a guide or service dog * PTSD and combat stress related to veterans and families

Thanks to her retired guide dog, Verona, Ann also visits libraries and assisted living centers offering pet assisted therapy.

Books by Ann Chiappetta

One of the recent reviews for Follow Your Dog

Meredith 5.0 out of 5 stars What life is like living with a guide dog.  Reviewed in the United States on November 9, 2020

I purchased Ann’s book after losing my guide dog to cancer. I highly recommend this book to anyone who has loved a dog, experienced grief in losing one. Guide Dog or Family Pet. I can honestly say that you will find something here that will sound like a personal experience you have witnessed. The first day I picked this book up to read, I couldn’t put it down. This would truly be one of the best books you could gift yourself with. It spoke gently to my heart.

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – And : Amazon UK – Blog: Thought Wheel – Twitter: @anniedungarees

 

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

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Author Updates – #Reviews #Family Lisette Brodey, #SouthernCulture Claire Fullerton, #Fantasy Tyler Edwards


Welcome to the first of the author updates this week with recent reviews for authors on the shelves.

The first review today is for the latest book from LIsette Brodey.. a story of family and relationships The Sum of our Sorrows.

About the book

In an idyllic suburb in Northern California, tragedy strikes the Sheppard family when Abby, the mother of three daughters and wife to Dalton, is killed in a car accident. Charlotte, the middle daughter, is in the car with her mother and survives without physical injury but remains deeply scarred on the inside.

Dalton tells Lily, his eldest daughter, that she must sacrifice long-awaited college plans and put her life on hold to take care of her sisters. Lily is torn between her devotion to family and an increasing need to find her place in the world — but how can she leave, knowing her family may crumble? Will her presence eventually cause more problems than it resolves?

The Sum of our Sorrows reveals how the aftermath of a family tragedy can precipitate sorrows never imagined. It is a tale of grief, hope, healing, coming-of-age, friendship, and survival. It is also a love story of two broken souls living through pain in search of better days and the renewal of one’s spirit.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I write characters as I hear them speak to me. Some of these stories contain non-gratuitous expletives and sexual references. This book also contains some situations that may be triggering to some readers. If this is not to your liking, please don’t read this book. Thank you.

A recent review for the book

Jan 30, 2021 Richard Schwindt rated it it was amazing
Lisette Brodey is one of those authors who writes for her readers. It occurred to me while reading The Sum of Our Sorrows that if you like to lose yourself in a good story featuring relatable people (and a few nasty ones), Brodey, and this book in particular, was for you. It begins in the immediate aftermath of a tragedy. Eighteen year old Lily, along with her 2 younger sisters lose their mother in car crash. Her fifteen year old sister is in the car and traumatized. Her father is devastated, drinking and seems to lose himself. In the weeks that follow Lily will lose her friends and dreams too. This family is tortured in its grief, and she has to hold it all together. The story follows her, and the subsequent events, leading to love, disclosure and redemption. I have rarely appreciated the writer’s commitment to good fluid prose more than in this book. It is a cliché to say that you were “captured by the story” but in this case I certainly was. I can see The Sum of Our Sorrows appealing to many diverse readers on that basis alone. Highly recommended, with tea by the garden.

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

A selection of books by Lisette Brodey

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Follow Lisette: Goodreads – Website/blog: Lisette Brodey – Twitter: @LisetteBrodey – Facebook: Lisette.Brodey

The next 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

T. Bakken 5.0 out of 5 stars Friends Reviewed in the United States on January 9, 2021

I knew in the first pages of Little Tea that Fullerton’s storytelling would transport me. Her descriptive passages about the humidity and verdant landscape are palpable. I knew I would feel at home in the female company of the three friends reunion on the lake. Fullerton weaves their past and present and deep understanding of one another together beautifully. What I didn’t know was that this story – of friendships, and first loves, and reliving the triumphs and tragedies of the past – would carry profound lessons on what it means to be happy, balanced, and open minded. Fullerton is a skilled linguist and philosopher – wrapped up in a fantastic storyteller. Little Tea is a gift I’m so glad I opened!

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon USAnd : Amazon UK

Also by Claire Fullerton

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

Delighted to welcome Tyler Edwards to the Cafe and Bookstore with his books and today I am featuring his latest release the dystopian, science fiction novel The Outlands

About the book

In the ruins of the world that was lies the city of Dios, a haven protected from the hostile environment known as The Outlands. Ruled by an oppressive Patriarch, the people of Dios are conditioned in fear. The smallest infraction could result in banishment to the Outlands, a fate worse than death.

With his make-shift family of “Undesirables”, Jett Lasting struggles to find his place in a world where drawing attention to yourself can get you killed. His very existence is considered a crime. To survive, he must avoid guards, beggar gangs, and an ever-growing tension that could drag the whole city into chaos.

Jett unwittingly becomes entwined in a plot to overthrow the government where his choices could lead to freedom or the death of everyone he’s ever known or cared about.

One of the recent reviews for the book

Nancy S 5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Story that will keep you on the edge of your seat Reviewed in the United States on February 5, 2021

I couldn’t put this book down. If you like sci-fi, dystopian fiction, you must read this one. The twists and turns don’t stop. My only complaint is that it ended too soon!! Looking forward to the next book in this series.

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

Also by Tyler Edwards

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Follow Tyler: Goodreads – Facebook: Tyler Edwards Twitter: @tedwardsccc

 

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

 

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Christmas Book Fair – New Release #History Mike Biles, Reviews -#Family Lisette Brodey, #Paranormal Roberta Eaton Cheadle, #Adventure Audrey Driscoll, #History Joyce Hampton


Welcome to the Christmas Book Fair where I will be featuring all the authors currently on the shelves of the Cafe and Bookstore.

The first author today is Mike Biles who has written a succinct and entertaining history of Britain that I can highly recommend. He has a new release just in time for Christmas. A Bit About Britain’s High Days and Holidays.

About the book

High Days and Holidays are special occasions, celebrations, or commemorations. They occur throughout the year, some wanted, some not, some remembered more than others. In days gone by, the passing year was marked by seasonal or religious feast days of one sort or another; in some respects, they still help define our calendar.

A Bit About Britain’s High Days and Holidays explores a baker’s dozen of Britain’s notable occasions and traditions, from New Year onward, the things we associate with them and the stories behind each one. If you’ve ever wondered who Valentine was, where Christmas crackers come from, or thought about the Easter bunny (and who hasn’t?), A Bit About Britain’s High Days and Holidays is for you. And, whilst this book is not just for Christmas, it does include an A-Z of the festive season. A couple of recipes have been thrown in for good measure too, as well as an agenda for your hosting your very own Burns’ Supper. Oh – and at the end is an extensive list of Britain’s Big Days and events that normally form part of Britain’s Year – through Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter.

So, if you’ve ever been baffled as to why some Brits do some of the things they do, or have even questioned why you do them yourself, this little book might help. Occasionally lighthearted, fascinating and useful, once you’ve read it, keep it handy to refer to when needed.

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

Also by Mike Biles

A recent recent review for A Bit About Britain

Eduardo Ruggiero5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant read from start to finish Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 18 November 2020

Refreshingly concise, it breaks Britain’s complex and often dramatic history into fascinating chunks, without the unnecessary and let’s face it – often relatively dull detail that so many history books give us. A Bit About Britain’s History gives the reader the opportunity to decide for themselves which periods interest them most (it’s the War of the Roses for me!) and has the power to convert anyone into a history lover.

Hugely engaging and often witty, it’s definitely the sort of book that knowledgeable historians and complete novices can enjoy alike.

I have already given four copies to my English- speaking family members in Brazil, and the others all keep asking me when the Portuguese version will be available!

 

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon UK – And : Amazon US – Follow Mike on : Goodreads – Website: A Bit About Britain – Twitter@bitaboutbritain

Now for some recent reviews.

The next author is Lisette Brodey who is a recent addition to the  Cafe and Bookstore, with a review for the coming of age novel, The Sum of our Sorrows

About the book

In an idyllic suburb in Northern California, tragedy strikes the Sheppard family when Abby, the mother of three daughters and wife to Dalton, is killed in a car accident. Charlotte, the middle daughter, is in the car with her mother and survives without physical injury but remains deeply scarred on the inside.

Dalton tells Lily, his eldest daughter, that she must sacrifice long-awaited college plans and put her life on hold to take care of her sisters. Lily is torn between her devotion to family and an increasing need to find her place in the world — but how can she leave, knowing her family may crumble? Will her presence eventually cause more problems than it resolves?

The Sum of our Sorrows reveals how the aftermath of a family tragedy can precipitate sorrows never imagined. It is a tale of grief, hope, healing, coming-of-age, friendship, and survival. It is also a love story of two broken souls living through pain in search of better days and the renewal of one’s spirit.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I write characters as I hear them speak to me. Some of these stories contain non-gratuitous expletives and sexual references. This book also contains some situations that may be triggering to some readers. If this is not to your liking, please don’t read this book. Thank you.

One of the recent reviews for the book

Journey 5.0 out of 5 stars Another 5 Star Story  Reviewed in the United States on November 20, 2020

Another five-star tale from Lisette Brodey. I have to admit, I was pretty certain I would like this one when I first read the title. THE SUM OF OUR SORROWS describes the premise of the book perfectly. When the mom of the family is killed in an accident, grief gets hold of the family and seems it will never let go. Adding to that huge sorrow is the dad’s insistence that Lily, the eldest daughter, must take over the household while putting her own dreams on hold indefinitely. I turned the pages wildly, hoping to discover that Lily would find a way to escape this travesty of injustice, hoping—at the very least—that her father would come to his senses. But of course, life isn’t that easy, and therein lies the story. Be prepared for an emotional roller-coaster of a read, but rest assured, happiness and romance are out there, all is not lost. The ending satisfies. Kudos, Ms. Brodey. Kudos! ;

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

A selection of books by Lisette Brodey

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Follow Lisette: Goodreads – Website/blog: Lisette Brodey – Twitter: @LisetteBrodey –  Facebook: Lisette.Brodey

The next author today with a recent review for her paranormal novel is Roberta Eaton Cheadle and Through the Nethergate. You will also find books for children by Robbie and her son Michael in the Children’s Cafe.

About the book

Margaret, a girl born with second sight, has the unique ability to bring ghosts trapped between Heaven and Hell back to life. When her parents die suddenly, she goes to live with her beloved grandfather, but the cellar of her grandfather’s ancient inn is haunted by an evil spirit of its own. In the town of Bungay, a black dog wanders the streets, enslaving the ghosts of those who have died unnatural deaths. When Margaret arrives, these phantoms congregate at the inn, hoping she can free them from the clutches of Hugh Bigod, the 12th century ghost who has drawn them away from Heaven’s White Light in his canine guise. With the help of her grandfather and the spirits she has befriended, Margaret sets out to defeat Hugh Bigod, only to discover he wants to use her for his own ends – to take over Hell itself.

One of the recent reviews for the book on Goodreads

Oct 13, 2020 Jessica Bakkers rated it Five Stars it was amazing

When I started ‘Through the Nethergate’ I thought to myself, “Ooo, a good old fashioned ghost story!” Then suddenly, author Roberta Eaton Cheadle went and changed the rules. Ghosts became semi solid, famous (and infamous) figures from history were involved in socio-political intrigue, and the Big Bad was nothing short of Lucifer himself! I’ve rarely come across a book with such left of centre twists and turns, where the stakes rise and rise until it literally turns into an epic battle between good and evil.

Amidst all that, Cheadle weaves in historical nuggets about characters, places, and events spanning from Roman times right up to the late 1900s. Her history accounts are very well researched, and I found myself learning a lot about historical characters and events that I only had a passing knowledge of.

Somewhat reminding me of Stephen King’s ‘The Stand’, ‘Through the Nethergate’ pits the forces of good against the literal forces of evil. There’s a strong message (or two or three) about the state of humanity and its dwindling morals and ethics, but the message doesn’t get in the way of the story. The same goes for an underlying theme of religion; it’s present, but does not come across as pontifical, and just because the author explores religious themes, this is not a pious read; expect horror, gore, and some disturbing moments.

‘Through the Nethergate’ is one heck of a surprising read. The characters are numerous and fleshed out (no pun intended!), the story twists and grows into something epic, the horror is nicely done without being over the top, and the end is deeply satisfying. A solid read I can highly recommend.

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

A selection of other Sir Chocolate stories co-written with Michael Cheadle and other books by Robbie Cheadle

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Read the reviews and buy the books:Amazon US And:Amazon UK – Robbie on : Goodreads – blog: Robbie’s Inspiration –  Twitter: @RobertaEaton17

The next author today with a recent review is Audrey Driscoll for her latest book Tales from the Annexe: seven stories from the Herbert West Series and seven other tales

About the collection

Seven stories from the world of Audrey Driscoll’s Herbert West Series, followed by seven other tales of illusions, delusions, and mysteries on the edges of logic. Discover Herbert West’s connections to Egypt, and how a dead man can help solve a mystery. Share Charles Milburn’s ruminations as he explores another dimension of his friendship with Herbert. Sample the treats on offer from an ice cream truck from Hell. Ride along with a dad who abandoned his ten-year-old son in the woods where something howls. Find out why a woman paints her bedroom a very special colour. Watch fifteen-year-old Ann as she tries to prove she belongs to the glamorous family on the other side of town. These and seven other curious encounters may be found in this annexe to the ordinary.

A recent review for the collection

Reviewed in the United States on October 29, 2020

Having read all the author’s Herbert West novels, I was curious about the additional glimpses into that world afforded by this collection of stories. I enjoyed them all, with one of my favorites being “A Visit to Luxor” (I’m partial to the character of Andre, West’s only fully successful effort at resurrection). “One of the Fourteen” is chilling, and The Night Journey of Francis Dexter” is a must-read for Herbert West fans. I thought the weakest of these treatments was “The Nexus,” the introductory story. It isn’t something that grabs the attention and compels the reader to continue. Quarrington didn’t come to life for me. It might have been better placed at the end of the initial seven tales.

Actually, I enjoyed the final seven stories the most. They are great examples of the range of the author’s imagination, and her concluding comments on what inspired these stories was revelatory. She has the ability to work magic into a reality setting, even if the reality takes place in a constructed world (“The Blue Rose,” which reminded me a little bit of LeGuin’s “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas.”) I had read “The Ice Cream Truck from Hell” on the author’s blog, but I believe it has been reworked a bit and turned out perfect in the suggestiveness of its conclusion. “The Colour of Magic” was excellent, and “The Glamour” was definitely a favorite. The author’s ability to write great descriptive passages continues unabated.

I recommend this collection, even if you aren’t familiar with the Herbert West series. The concluding seven stories certainly make it worth the price of an ebook.

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

Read the reviews and buy the books:Amazon US – And:  Amazon UK – follow Audrey: Goodreads – Website:Audrey Driscoll – LinkedIn: Audrey Driscoll

The final author today brings us full circle back to history an another book that I can recommend. The Story of the Huguenots: A Unique Legacy  by Joyce Hampton.

About the book

The Huguenots were the most successful refugees to leave their homeland in search of freedom. The book tells of their questioning of the established Catholic faith in France and continues through the rise of Calvinism, the wars of religion, the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, and the global diaspora of the Huguenots. It examines the national events that shaped their times, and brings to life some of their personal stories of persecution and flight, and how they travelled far and wide to begin new lives with the promise of religious and personal freedom.

The book not only tells their history but informs the reader of the numerous, diverse and ingenious inventions, many of which are still much in evidence in our lives today.
The book focuses mainly on France and the United Kingdom but within its covers can be found a kaleidoscope of information of their worldwide diaspora. Included within its pages are countless, often previously unpublished, Huguenot family histories set against the events they lived through.

The book covers 500 years of history from 1517-2017 and includes many courageous and selfless acts of Huguenot descendants during both world wars and identifies many well-known individuals who have Huguenot ancestry.

There is also information on how to research your Huguenot ancestors. The book has been described as a factual novel as it embraces both dedicated meticulous cross-referenced research with the easy read of a novel. A book with a difference that will suit both academic scholars and those who have very little knowledge of the Huguenots but would like to know more.

My review for the book October 27th 2020

This book is not just about the unique history of the Huguenots, which is compelling, tragic and inspiring, but is also how the legacy of these refugees from religious persecution enriched the lives of millions today around the world.

Covering 500 years this book takes us through the wars, revolts, betrayals and eventual sanctuary found in England and other parts of Europe, as well as the far outposts of the  world in later centuries including South Africa. As refugees they were generally made welcome as the Huguenots brought with them a wealth of artisan skills which were highly regarded in their host countries, a strong moral and work ethic, and a belief in community and its well-being.

The author shares detailed histories of the countries of origin and the host nations.  The Protestant and Catholic conflicts of the middle ages onward were a time of great uncertainty.  Your religion was subject to a change in status on a frequent basis as kings and queens ascended the various European thrones. This included the thrones in Scotland and England during the 15th and 16th centuries.

It was fascinating to learn more about the various artisan skills that the refugees brought with them and re-established in London and some other major cities in England, Scotland and Ireland. The author gives detailed accounts of these such as silk production and spinning, gold and silver work, clocks and watchmaking, architecture and design, furniture making and printing. On the medical front leading doctors and scientists established protocols and advances in obstetrics and the establishment of pharmacies. Over the centuries Huguenot business leaders set in motion commercial ventures that are the origins of the Bank of England and our stock market.

It was interesting to discover that many well known authors, artists and actors that have brought their talent to the arts around the world were of Huguenot ancestry.

As well as the detailed history of the Huguenots as protestants from diverse nationalities, Joyce Hampton also shares the stories of individuals with a background to their reasons for seeking sanctuary, and how they brought great benefits to the adopted countries. These bring a personal element to the book that I much enjoyed, especially as it brought some people and events in my own life to mind. I had not given any thought to the name of my teacher in South Africa for example, but from the book I discovered that Miss Du Plessis was of Huguenot origins.

I can recommend this book to history lovers, genealogists and writers of historical novels as the detail and research is impeccable. For those researching their family trees it is a great reference for identifying possible Huguenot connections over the last 500 years, particularly if you originate from London or other major cities where the refugees settled.

More than anything, I came away from reading the book with a sense of hope. Today we see parallels to the religious persecution of 500 years ago, with millions still fleeing oppression and seeking sanctuary which is often denied. Without the acceptance and integration of Huguenots within our society, many of the advances in science, economics, commerce and the arts would be sadly lacking in our modern world. We need to take on board some of the lessons from the past.

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

Also by Joyce Hampton

 

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon UK – And: Amazon US – Follow Joyce  : Goodreads – Website:Not Just Another Book Twitter: @NJABOfficial

 

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