Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Spring Showcase – Effrosyni Moschoudi, John Nicholl, Jessica Norrie, Olga Nunez Miret, Joan O’Hagan, Lynn Otty, J. A. Owenby, Adele Marie Park, Frank Parker and Yvonne Payne.

Welcome to spring….. and there might be a hint of colour in the garden, as daffodils push their way to the surface, but there is plenty of colour on the shelves of the bookstore that I thought I would share with you over the next week.

If you are looking for you next book to read then look no further than these talented authors and over 600 books currently on the shelves.

Instead of the usual Cafe and Bookstore updates on Friday and Monday.. I will be featuring a number of authors each day with their updated reviews.

I will give you their listing which also includes a link to buy the books but also discover others that they have written but are not listed. You will also find a link to their website or blog to find out more information, and as you can imagine… they write great posts too.

Here is the next ten featured authors from the Cafe and Bookstore with their recent reviews.

Effrosyni Moschoudi, Buy:
Website & Blog:

To view all of Effrosyni’s books please visit her Amazon page.

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Mar 02, 2018 Gerri rated it it was amazing Five Stars on Goodreads

Two stories seemingly unrelated, one in 1980’s Greece, the other begins in 1937 Brighton England. Can they be related? The author weaves her tale with such vivid descriptions, particularly of Greece, you can almost feel the warmth of the sun on your skin and smell all the spices released from the cooking in the kitchens. The West Pier in Brighton plays a part, in summer and winter. Love is the theme. Two couples, close friends, in each time period. One couple seems fine, but the other couple have a hard time getting together. As book number one ends, things are looking much better for all, yet a hint of future trouble looms. The story will continue with book number two and how the events of 1937-38 may or may not be repeated in the 1980’s. Very well written, especially of the teen-age girls. I look forward to reading the next in this series.

John Nicholl, Buy:

To view all of John Nicholl’s books please visit Amazon or his blog.


One of the recent reviews for A Cold Cold Heart

Meet the suave and debonair Charles Turner. A gentleman and solicitor of impeccable manners who has a fondness for pretty young ladies. He wines them, he dines them, he surrounds them with his wealth and musical taste and introduces them to his large detached residence in the country. There is just one problem with Mr C he is partial to erotic asphyxiation, enjoys the thrill of strangulation, and has a fixation with his dear departed mother her elegant party dresses and the smell of her lavender perfume. DI Gravel is having a bad day with a serial killer on the loose, the body count mounting, and his only daughter Emily about to step into the jaws of a crocodile when she accepts a job at a respectable local firm of solicitors Harrison and Turner.

I really enjoyed this book and unusual in the fact that the reader knows very quickly who the killer is. There are some well defined characters namely DI Gravel and his unhealthy life choices, his very able assistant Detective Sergeant Laura Kesey and a dangerous predator who will stop at nothing to feed his depraved sexual lust. Many thanks to netgalley for a gratis copy in exchange for an honest review and that is what I have written. I will certainly be reading more by John Nicholl as I enjoy his witty and fast flowing prose

Jessica Norrie, Buy:


An extract from a recent review for the book

Well-written and acutely observed on 14 December 2017

Jessica Norrie’s novel, set on a sun-drenched island somewhere in the Mediterranean, examines the personalities and pitfalls encountered on the sort of package holiday that offers holistic life-skills and self-improvement courses. While practising yoga and suchlike activities, guests at the Serendipity resort, together with staff and, from time to time, local villagers, confront social, personal and philosophical challenges.Norrie has a confident narrative voice and a shrewd and sympathetic view of human nature, which makes her account of the goings-on at Serendipity entertaining as well as thought-provoking.

The central character is absent for much of the book: this means that the reader builds up a picture of him through the thoughts and observations of other characters, like a photographic negative – he is defined by his impact on others. When he re-emerges in his own right, his condition is so altered that we learn about other people from their decidedly contrasting (and sometimes unattractive) reactions.

Olga Nunez Miret – Buy:

Please visit Amazon or Olga’s blog to view all her books.


One of the recent reviews for 20 Things I’ve Learned from my Patients.

Bob Van Laerhoven – Belgian novelist 5.0 out of 5 stars A truly heart-warming, but also sly book February 7, 2018

This is a truly heart-warming, but also sly book: I can’t count the times that I smiled while reading these little jewels of insight, empathy and compassion, but regularly I also frowned on moments in which it felt like if a mirror was held before me, reflecting things about myself I would rather forget (and in fact had forgotten). Mrs Miret’s observations are never intrusive or preachy, but they can be quite confronting now and then, but in a friendly way, and rendered in a softly flowing style. Yes, a little compassionate sugar does help to get the medicine down….Nice work, Mrs. Miret, it is my firm intention not to forget your pearls of wisdom….By the way, I’m a Fleming, and we Fleming pride ourselves in our ability to learn foreign languages. Having the Spanish translation alongside the English text has definitely improved my Spanish, and, yes, that is such a nicely flowing, rich sounding language.

Joan O’Hagan, Buy:

A recent review for A Roman Death

Amazon Customer 5.0 out of 5 stars A different perspective February 19, 2018

I chose the book because I’m a whodunnit fan. But the author has obviously researched ancient Rome thoroughly, and I came to trust what she was saying. So, although it’s a good whodunnit, that became secondary to the interesting way the Romans operated. It’s a pleasure to recommend.

Lynn Otty, Buy:

A recent review for the collection

Margaret Newlands 5.0 out of 5 stars A wee treat 4 January 2018

A book for dipping into, allowing time to reflect on each thought-provoking story. Touching and sensitive in the telling, the author takes the reader through nostalgic memories, inspiring a range of emotions. A lovely read.

J.A. Owenby, Buy:


A recent review Echoes Beneath

Echoes Beneath was a startling portrayal of love, violence, abuse and entrapment. Lacey comes from a dysfunctional family. Her mother is mentally disturbed and has abused her and her sister for years. She finally escapes her mother’s clutches and moves away to Oregon to attend college and begin anew.

What Lacey doesn’t realize is that victim is stamped all over her. Another abusive relationship is about to begin when she meets the handsome and popular football star. Lacey once again is trapped like an animal.

This story gripped my heart and wouldn’t let go. I couldn’t put it down until I finished it. The only problem was that it ended abruptly and promised to continue in book 3. Well, I guess I will be buying it just to find out what happened to poor Lacey. I’d prefer if the author didn’t do it that way but at least provide an ending that wasn’t so abrupt and left the reader hanging.

The author did a believable job of portraying an abusive relationship. It was a frightening thing to read about. I pray that others who are in such a relationship will seek help and get away before they lose their lives. No one deserves to be treated that way.

Adele Park, Buy:

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An extract from a recent review for Wisp

Colleen M. Chesebro rated it 5 Stars

Meet Wisp, a law enforcer in the land of Edra, where magic is encouraged to flourish and is often needed for sheer survival. A mages council rules Edra compared to the neighboring area of Finah, who prefers humans to control their resources. After a bloody civil war, many years ago, the two lands exist beside each other in a fragile peace.

Wisp is a marsh fairy (YES! Can you believe it?) with raven hair and pointy ears pierced with silver earrings. Marsh fairies are rare and possess special powers. Wisp keeps his real identity under wraps, known only to his superiors. Abandoned as a child, the “Senior” Law enforcement officer raised him ensuring his survival.

In a desolate area filled with putrefying rubbish, Wisp comes across the body of a High Elf, a member of the Thorns, who was a high-ranking council member found murdered in the circle. The elf’s throat had been brutally cut. Wisp sets out to solve the murder not realizing he is to play an integral part in solving the mystery.

Frank Parker, Buy:

An extract from a recent review for A Purgatory of Misery

This is a deeply researched and well-written book. I was expecting it to focus almost entirely on the famine years. I was pleasantly surprised to find that it covers much broader topics which help to put the famine into historical, political, social, economic and religious perspective. Indeed, a full eight chapters are devoted to “setting the scene”. There’s even a fascinating chapter on nutrition and mental development.

The actual famine is broken down into four chapters as the crisis begins, develops, peaks and then wanes. At the end is an interesting summary giving the author’s personal view on the disaster, and on the continuing presence of famine in the world today.

A Purgatory of Misery is worthy of attention for anyone interested in European history. It gives a broad sweep of history, from way before the famine up to and then beyond those famine years. And it presents what seems to me to be a well-balanced account that does not take sides or inappropriately point the finger of blame.

A full review including an interview with the author is on

Yvonne Payne, Buy:

A review for the book

on 13 October 2017

Exciting story that has wonderful historical facts while continuing to give you the flavour of true Cretan life that is still in evidence in villages today.
A story of courage and true conviction that reminds you of the important things in life such as love, friendship and honour.
I really enjoyed this book and I am sure anyone would enjoy it who is interested in Crete or is looking for a beach read.
Hope there is more to come from this author.

Thank you for dropping in today… Sally


Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – Linda G. Hill, Helen Jones, J.A. Owenby and Robbie and Michael Cheadle.

Welcome to Friday’s Cafe and Bookstore update and another full house today beginning with Linda G. Hill with the most recent review for her book The Magician’s Curse: A Paranormal Romance – The Great Dagmaru Book 1.

Until the end of October all proceeds from books sold by Linda G. Hill will be donated to the fund for hurrican relief for the Islands.

About the book

When Herman Anderson leaves home to make a better life for herself, she doesn’t expect to meet a tall, dark stranger with whom she’ll fall hopelessly in love.

Charming and mysterious, Stephen Dagmar is a stage magician seeking an assistant. The moment he sets eyes on Herman, he knows she’s the one. He brings her home to his Victorian mansion where they embark upon an extravagant romance. Yet a shadow hangs over their love. Will the curse on his family end Stephen and Herman’s happily ever after, before it really begins?

Amidst lace and leather, innocence and debauchery, The Magician’s Curse begins the Gothic tale of The Great Dagmaru. Magic and romance await.

One of the most recent reviews for the book

A demon incubus passed from generation to generation and handed down from father to son is the creative genius of Canadian author, Linda G. Hill. In, The Magician’s Curse, those infected with the scourge have one sole purpose in life – to seduce women and create offspring. Stephen Dagmar inherits this bane of his existence which ties his family to their servants, the Currys’ involving some creepy relationships in the true gothic sense of the genre.

Yet, as the author states, “Things don’t always go as planned.” Enter, Herman Anderson, an almost eighteen-year-old ready to break free from the restraints of a broken family. Her mother is dysfunctional with some kind of strange malady, and her father is gone most of the time. Yet, determined to strike out on her own, Herman leaves behind her eleven-year-old brother to fend for himself with the promise that she will send for him when she is situated at the job she accepted at a far from home horse farm.

While on the train heading to the new job, Herman engages in a conversation with the captivating magician, Stephen Dagmar. There is an immediate attraction between the two, and the story takes off, sweeping the reader off your feet in much the same fashion. Before you know it, Herman is under Stephen’s spell and agrees to become his magician’s assistant.

I found this reaction hard to believe at first until I realized there was more at play here. Much in the same way that Dracula held power over the ladies, Stephen Dagmar commands the physical attraction of men and women alike. Herman is no exception, and for one so young and inexperienced in the ways of men, she falls for Stephen immediately. Stephen senses something special in Herman and is clearly smitten himself.

Immediately, Herman enters the fairy tale world of Dagmaru, the magician, where money is no object. Stephen spends lavishly on the teen, and as they get to know one another, their physical attraction grows. Finally, in desperation, Stephen explains that until Herman is eighteen, they will not consummate their relationship. There is a dark thread of sexual tension that runs through the book from beginning to end that at times gave me the shivers.

Deep down I suspected that I knew where the story was headed, but for the life of me I couldn’t predict the twists and turns the novel produced. The writing was crisp and clear as it propelled me on toward the explosive ending. In fact, the suspense kept me turning pages long into the night. Even so, by the end of book one, I was haunted by more questions than answers. I look forward to the second book in the series with the hope that these issues will be solved.

The Magician’s Curse is a deliciously eerie tale unlike any I’ve read so far. Be prepared to be seduced by the supernatural potential of the series. I loved it and can’t wait to find out what happens next!

Read all the reviews and buy the book:

And Amazon UK:

Also by Linda G. Hill

Read all the reviews and buy the books:

And Amazon UK:

Read other reviews and follow Linda on Goodreads:

Connect to Linda via her website:

The next author with an update is Helen Jones with a recent review for her book A Thousand Rooms.

About A Thousand Rooms

Katie is thirty-two, single, and used to work in advertising. She’s also dead. A lost soul hitching rides with the dying, trying to find her way to… wherever she’s supposed to be.

And whoever she’s supposed to be with. Heaven, it seems, has a thousand rooms. What will it take to find hers?

One of the recent reviews for the book on Goodreads

Laurie rated it Four Stars on September 5th 2017

Wow! Haven’t we all wondered what happens when our time on earth end?
Helen Jones took the plunge thru a character named Katie who dies suddenly and quite by accident. Obviously, Nobody was expecting her,which causes some problems for Katie as she attempts to find Heaven.

Heaven isn’t about one big cloud we all sit on, but finding peace and complete happiness and forgiveness in those we have left behind. Katie- after visiting so many rooms in Heaven that she does not belong in, finds her room and her complete love.

“Maybe I would have been able to show you a little, but you had to find it in yourself. You’re the only person who can help you, in the end.”  “I was blessed.”

An interesting read that would be an excellent book club discussion. I truly enjoyed it.

Read the reviews and buy the book:

and on Amazon UK:

Read many more reviews on Goodreads:

Also by Helen Jones

Read the reviews and buy the books:

and on Amazon UK:

Read more reviews and follow Helen on Goodreads:

Connect to Helen Jones via her blog:

The next author with an update is J. A. Owenby with a recent release, the novella My Hurricane.

About the novella

Do you ever think you know things, but realize that you don’t know jack?

That was me. I thought I had the world in the palm of my hands.

Senior year was a breeze, complete with raging parties, a hot girlfriend, and a future all laid out for me. Life was perfect. Christ, was I wrong.

And when everything started crumbling down, there was not one damn thing I could do to make it stop. Life started spiraling out of control, one letdown and setback after the next. And now, suddenly, I’m trapped in a hurricane of hell that I can’t escape.

I’m Walker Farren, And this is only the beginning.

One of the recent reviews for the novella

Great read on September 5, 2017

Owenby does it again. This novella is told from Walker’s perspective. Having read the Truth trilogy, this short story took me back to the beginning of Walker’s teen years and brought the trilogy to a full circle. I was immediately drawn in on the very first page and couldn’t put it down. I didn’t want it to end.

If you haven’t read the Truth series, I highly recommend that you do. J.A. Owenby has a way of pulling you in and making you want more.

Read all the reviews and buy the novella:

And on Amazon UK:

Read more reviews on Goodreads:

Also by J. A. Owenby

Read the reviews and buy the books:

and on Amazon UK:

Read other reviews and follow J.A. Owenby on Goodreads:

Connect to J.A. Owenby via her website:

And finally today great news for fans of Robbie and Michael Cheadle’s, story and cookbooks with the latest release of Sir Chocolate and the Condensed Milk River Story and Cookbook.

About the book

The Condensed Milk River that flows through Chocolateville has narrowed to a slither. All the fish and other water creatures have lost their homes and the people of Chocolateville are at a loss as to what to do. Join Sir Chocolate and Lady Sweet on this new adventure to find out what is causing the problem. Learn to make some of their 5 fun recipes along the way, including mini quiches and marshmallow flowers. (A5 version)

An early review for the book

on 11 October 2017

I just love these rhyming stories about Sir Chocolate and his adventures. I could almost taste the “enormous milky jewel” condensed milk river! The recipes look delicious and so easy too.

Buy the book:

And at Amazon UK:

Also by Robbie and Michael Cheadle

Read all the reviews and buy the books:

And on Amazon UK:

Read more reviews and follow Robbie and Michael on Goodreads:

Connect to Robbie and Michael at their blog:

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you will head over and explore the books of these talented authors. thanks Sally