Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Updates – #Reviews – Janice Spina, Marian Beaman and Marcia Meara


Welcome to the first of the week’s updates for authors on the shelves of the Cafe and Bookstore with recent reviews.

Delighted to share one of the recent reviews for the new release by Janice Spina.  Abby & Holly series book 3 – Secrets of the Trunk

About the book

Join Abby and Holly in Book 3 as the cousins discover a new presence in their old Victorian while they are cleaning out the library of old books. They are not sure if this specter is benign or otherwise. This being leads them to the old trunk they discovered in Book 2 which holds many secrets and puzzles that they feel compelled to solve.

They enlist the help of their ghost friend, Felicity, who inhabits their home. She is a benevolent entity that once lived in their house from a century ago. She watches over the girls and vows never to leave them unless they request her to do so.

There will be surprises and ghostly visits that will keep readers enthralled as Abby and Holly work together to uncover the secrets of the trunk.

One of the recent reviews for the book

Michelle Clements James 5.0 out of 5 stars The story book instills life lessons September 6, 2019

This is a skillfully written story that logically follows Book 2 in the series. Abby and Holly are determined to solve the mystery of the old trunk and elicit the help of their ghost friends, Felicity and Minerva. When things get a bit out of hand and turn dangerous, the girls turn to their moms and to Abby’s dad for help.

Abby and Holly are typical young middle-grade girls who are adventurous, sweet, kindhearted, and thoughtful. Their ghost friends are helpful and caring. All the characters are well-drawn and believable, that is unless you don’t believe in ghosts.

As with all the author’s children’s books, this book instills life lessons, especially that everyone should treat all others with respect. The life lessons introduced in Secrets of the Trunk are how to handle the unexpected and how to overcome disappointments.

I loved this book, as I have all the other middle-grade books by Janice Spina. I recommend it as a book for your middle-grade child to read by themselves or as a book you’ll read together.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Abby-Holly-Book-Secrets-Trunk/dp/1732528829

And on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Abby-Holly-Book-Secrets-Trunk/dp/1732528829

A very small selection of children’s books by Janice Spina

Also as J.E. Spina

Discover all of Janice Spina’s books, read the reviews and buy  https://www.amazon.com/Janice-Spina/e/B00HNET4HG

and on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Janice-Spina/e/B00HNET4HG

Find more reviews and follow Janice on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7222888.Janice_Spina

Connect to Janice via her blog: http://Jemsbooks.blog

Now another excellent review for Marian Beaman.. a memoir – Mennonite Daughter: The Story of a Plain Girl released earlier in September.

About the book

What if the Mennonite life young Marian Longenecker chafed against offered the chance for a new beginning? What if her two Lancaster County homes with three generations of family were the perfect launch pad for a brighter future? Readers who long for a simpler life can smell the aroma of saffron-infused potpie in Grandma’s kitchen, hear the strains of four-part a capella music at church, and see the miracle of a divine healing.

Follow the author in pigtails as a child and later with a prayer cap, bucking a heavy-handed father and challenging church rules. Feel the terror of being locked behind a cellar door. Observe the horror of feeling defenseless before a conclave of bishops, an event propelling her into a different world.

Fans of coming-of-age stories will delight in one woman’s surprising path toward self-discovery, a self that lets her revel in shiny red shoes.

One of the recent reviews for the memoir

Mennonite Daughter is a beautifully written story about the growing up life and aspirations of one feisty and longing-to-be fancy girl who although practicing her faith obediently, longs to be free from some of the conforms of the Mennonite lifestyle.

Beaman, a girl, not unlike any other girlie girl, striving for her chance at a life free from head coverings and traditional clothing, as her desires since childhood grow to break free from tradition. We learn a lot about the Mennonite way of life, Beaman’s life, the close knit family and community life, and the antiquated punishments inflicted on her by her father, and about the mother who never interjected on those punishments, all because she spoke out for her convictions. The whippings and being locked in a dark, scary basement were the weapons of choice as punishments and discipline for her non-compliance in a world of which we’d now consider as child abuse. One heart trembling sentence that stood out to me, “I always watched for signs that Daddy was about to explode, so I wonder why I didn’t stop before I ignite the fire.” We’ll learn once again, as many writers like myself have lived and wrote about, if we search for the ‘why’ in someone’s behavior, we’ll almost always find the root cause.

Read the early reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07XL5FPW6

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B07XL5FPW6

Read more reviews and follow Marian on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19169570.Marian_Longenecker_Beaman

Connect to Marian via her blog: https://marianbeaman.com.

And the final author today is Marcia Meara with a recent review for That Darkest Place (Riverbend Book 3)

About the book

In Book 3 of her popular Riverbend series, Marcia Meara, author of Wake-Robin Ridge, A Boy Named Rabbit,and Harbinger, takes another look at the lives of the Painter brothers—Jackson, Forrest, and Hunter. While Hunter is home again and on the mend, the same isn’t true for his oldest brother. Jackson’s battle has just begun.

“There are dark places in every heart, in every head. Some you turn away from. Some you light a candle within. But there is one place so black, it consumes all light. It will pull you in and swallow you whole. You don’t leave your brother stranded in that darkest place.”
~Hunter Painter~

The new year is a chance for new beginnings—usually hopeful, positive ones. But when Jackson Painter plows his car into a tree shortly after midnight on January 1, his new beginnings are tragic. His brothers, Forrest and Hunter, take up a grim bedside vigil at the hospital, waiting for Jackson to regain consciousness and anxious over how he’ll take the news that he’s lost a leg and his fiancée is dead. After all, the accident was all his fault.

As the shocking truth emerges, one thing becomes obvious—Jackson will need unconditional love and support from both of his brothers if he is to survive.

Just as he begins the long road to recovery, danger, in the form of a sinister, unsigned note, plunges him back into bleak despair. Scrawled in blood red letters, the accusation—and the threat—is clear. “MURDERER!”

Will the long, harrowing ordeal that lies ahead draw the Painter brothers closer together, or drive them apart forever?

Suspenseful and often heartbreaking, this small-town tale is a testimonial to the redemptive power of love and paints a story filled with humor, romance, and fierce family loyalty.

One of the recent reviews of the book

The third book of the Riverbend series focuses primarily on Painter brothers, Jackson and Forrest, though youngest brother Hunter, is still a strong presence in his unique and quiet way. I fell in love with his character in book two.

At the end of Finding Hunter, Jackson was behaving horribly—lashing out at those around him, physically and verbally abusive. He ended up in a car accident believed to be the result of drunk driving. In That Darkest Place, the truth of what really took place and why is quickly revealed. Once brought to light, Jackson’s long road to recovery begins.

Once again, Meara tackles some weighty issues, but the most powerful theme is the unshakable bond of family, specifically brothers. Forrest and Hunter are not about to let Jackson muddle through on his own. Presenting a united front, they eventually have Jackson back to functioning almost normally again. Along the way there are physical and emotional hurdles to overcome, but there are also heartwarming and humorous moments to offset the weightier scenes.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B072LCVP6M

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B072LCVP6
 

A selection of books by Marcia Meara

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

And Amazon UK : https://www.amazon.co.uk/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

Read more reviews and follow Marcia Meara on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7242441.Marcia_Meara

Connect to Marcia via her website: http://marciamearawrites.com/

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

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Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update #Reviews – Jeanine Lunsford, Marcia Meara, Judy Penz Sheluk


Welcome to the second of the update posts this week for authors in the Cafe and Bookstore.

The first author is Jeanine Lunsford for her book Remembering First Love (The Rivera Sisters Series Book One)

About the book

20-year-old Carina Rivera is a prodigal daughter on her way back to her childhood relationship with God when she falls into the seductive trap set for her by her handsome supervisor, Aaron Mendoza.

“Remembering First Love” the first in the Rivera Sisters Series, takes the reader into Carina Rivera’s struggle to clean up the reputation she has acquired during her teen years as the “Bad Rivera sister”. Carina’s hopes of turning a new leaf are shattered when her mother loses her job and Carina becomes the sole breadwinner for her family.

When Carina is introduced to Aaron Mendoza, her handsome supervisor at the garment factory, she is captivated by his amazing looks and dreams of finding a meaningful relationship with him. But Aaron has a different kind of plan for Carina–a plan to lure her into his web of seduction.

Will Aaron’s allure continue to hold Carina captive or will God’s Hand of Providence and the prayers of her family help her escape from the dark shadows of Aaron’s world?

One of the recent reviews for Remembering First Love August 5th 2019

Remembering First Love is a charming faith based romance novel. Carina Rivera is 20 year-old single Cuban woman of faith living in southern Florida. She could be described as wayward, but contrite. On the day of her beloved older sister’s wedding Carina vows to return to God and correct her path. Due to some poor decisions within her control and some unfortunate incidents out of her control, Carina struggles with feeling of self-worth. Will she be able to repair her besmirched reputation? Will a handsome man’s inappropriate intentions sway Carina or will the pull of God’s love be enough to rescue her?

Jeanine Lunsford has written a truly inspiring novel. Carina is relatable in her imperfection. She falls for her supervisor and quickly finds herself in a compromised situation. It doesn’t take long for Carina to discover Aaron’s violent tendencies or his penchant for young attractive women. The story deals with her feelings of guilt balanced with mercy from above. The book also considers the long lasting consequences of child abuse. Although the dialogue feels forced at times, the transformation Carina makes is motivating. Christian readers will relate to the struggles of a modern day woman trying to retain chastity until marriage. Remembering First Love is a steamy novel that pushes the envelope. The drama will leave you breathless and aching for more!

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Remembering-First-Love-Rivera-Sisters-ebook/dp/B07KRMNQD9

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Remembering-First-Love-Rivera-Sisters-ebook/dp/B07KRMNQD9

Also by Jeanine Lunsford

Read the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Jeanine-Lunsford/e/B07KV4S1QH

And on Amazon UK:https://www.amazon.co.uk/Jeanine-Lunsford/e/B07KV4S1QH

And read more reviews and follow Jeanine on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18646293.Jeanine_Lunsford

Connect to Jeanine via her website: https://www.jeaninelunsford.com

The next author with a new review is Marcia Meara for The Emissary – A Riverbend Spinoff Novella which follows the story of a previous character in the series.

About The Emissary

Was Gabe Angelino, the mysterious truck driver in Finding Hunter: Riverbend Book 2, really an angel, as Willow Green believes? Or was he simply a good man, determined to help a stranger in need? Find out, as author Marcia Meara reveals the truth in the first Riverbend spinoff novella, The Emissary.

An angel’s work is never done—that’s part of the gig. But angels hadn’t been created to deal with such a vastly over-populated planet, rife with misery, suffering, and general chaos. Helping souls in peril has become a nearly impossible job, and even angelic tempers are frayed.

The archangel Azrael has had enough. He believes he’s found a way to ease their burden while saving jeopardized humans, too—hired help.

When Jake Daughtry lost his life rescuing a total stranger from certain death, he was on the fast track to Heaven. But that was before Azrael pulled him right out of line at the Pearly Gates. Now, as an Emissary to the Angels, Jake is taking to the highway in a quest to help souls in trouble. But the innate stubbornness of human beings bent on self-destruction is a challenge unlike any he’s ever faced.

It’s up to Jake and Azrael to bridge the gap between humans and angels. Will they ever convince the Council of Angels this endeavor is worthwhile? Can Jake figure out how to play by Azrael’s complicated rules? Will Azrael ever master the use of contractions in general conversation?

To find out the answers, hop on board Jake’s big red-and-white semi and travel the roads from the Florida Keys to north Georgia on an adventure that will make you laugh hard and cry even harder.

One of the recent reviews for the book on Goodreads

Jun 24, 2019 Darlene Foster rated it five stars

A delightful little book. The writing is clear and to the point with excellent dialogue that pulls you into the story. The characters are real and you care about them. I love the idea of a sort of angel, or angel’s helper, who drives a semi. Very clever. There is enough action to keep the story moving along. I’m pleased there are more books in the series.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Emissary-Riverbend-Spinoff-Novella-ebook/dp/B075Y2T3CL

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Emissary-Riverbend-Spinoff-Novella-ebook/dp/B075Y2T3CL/

A selection of books by Marcia Meara

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

And Amazon UK : https://www.amazon.co.uk/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

Read more reviews and follow Marcia Meara on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7242441.Marcia_Meara

Connect to Marcia via her website: http://marciamearawrites.com/

The final author with a recent review is Judy Penz Sheluk for Past and Present

About the book

Sometimes the past reaches out to the present…

It’s been thirteen months since Calamity (Callie) Barnstable inherited a house in Marketville under the condition that she search for the person who murdered her mother thirty years earlier. She solves the mystery, but what next? Unemployment? Another nine-to-five job in Toronto?

Callie decides to set down roots in Marketville, take the skills and knowledge she acquired over the past year, and start her own business: Past & Present Investigations.
It’s not long before Callie and her new business partner, best friend Chantelle Marchand, get their first client: a woman who wants to find out everything she can about her grandmother, Anneliese Prei, and how she came to a “bad end” in 1956. It sounds like a perfect first assignment. Except for one thing: Anneliese’s past winds its way into Callie’s present, and not in a manner anyone—least of all Callie—could have predicted.

One of the recent reviews for the book.

As it happens, I read book one (audio!), but long enough ago I was gratified to find that any references to the past were adequate to the instant plot, making each a standalone. In this tale, our intrepid heroine Calamity sells her house and buys another, and then starts a new business. Sudden deja vu to Judy Garland’s “I have a barn; let’s put on a show!” as various characters are swept in to lend their talents to a new investigative service. But then the first case comes along and serious hard work and research are highlighted with flashes of psi concepts and tarot reading which seem to guide the discoveries. The characters are largely likable with hiss-worthy villains to keep it balanced and I enjoyed the journey and look forward to the next case (hinted at but not a cliffhanger).

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Past-Present-Judy-Penz-Sheluk-ebook-dp-B07FYZ6HPF/dp/B07FYZ6HPF

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Past-Present-Judy-Penz-Sheluk-ebook/dp/B07FYZ6HPF

A selection of other books by Judy Penz Sheluk

Read the reviews and buy all the books: http://www.amazon.com/Judy-Penz-Sheluk/e/B00O74NX04

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Judy-Penz-Sheluk/e/B00O74NX04/

Read more reviews and follow Judy on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8602696.Judy_Penz_Sheluk

Connect to Judy via her blog: http://www.judypenzsheluk.com/

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you will be leaving with a few books under your arms… Sally.

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update #Reviews – J.P. Mclean, Sally Harris, Marcia Meara and Barbara Ann Mojica


Welcome to the first of this week’s author update with recent reviews for authors in the Cafe and Bookstore.

The first author with a recent review is J.P. McLean for Book 6 of The Gift Legacy  – Wings of Prey.

About the book

A dead man’s warning. A lost plane wreck. A buried truth.

A dire warning from beyond the grave leaves Emelynn Taylor questioning her loyalties. Did someone she loves commit an unforgivable act of treachery? In her quest for answers, Emelynn opens a painful cold case knowing its resolution could destroy two families.

What she finds tests Emelynn’s integrity as the leadership changes hands within the Tribunal Novem, the powerful body that rules her kind. When confronted with betrayal and lies, Emelynn must follow her moral compass, even if it means losing the man she loves and alienating her Flier friends.

And when the terrible truth is unearthed, Emelynn is set on a collision course with two titans and a battle she can’t possibly win.

The sixth book in The Gift Legacy series, Wings of Prey is a thriller that skirts the edges of reality in a world within our own. Hold on tight and escape the ordinary: take flight with Emelynn Taylor.

A recent review for the book on Goodreads

May 10, 2019 Karen rated it Five Stars

This book reunites the readers with Emelynn Taylor; together with Sam, she needs to find the truth about a plane crash – at all cost.

With “Wings of Prey”, J. P. McLean has once again created a thrilling combination of mystery, paranormal, urban fantasy, and a touch of romance with steamy situations. It is a very compelling read centred on Emelynn, drawing you close to her. J. P. McLean paints a clear picture of the main characters’ mindsets while the story evolves. In this sixth even more thrilling story, I was again very close to Em – again an invisible friend and ally; trying to find the truth with her. Emelynn is complex, the other characters are also skillfully elaborated and of sufficient depth, believable with their flaws and virtues. The story is a very nicely woven combination of several genres, has a wonderful flow; it was easy to get hooked. I had a great time reading “Wings of Prey”. Reading the final book in a series can be sad; in this series, it was extremely hard to let go – it is never easy to say goodbye to persons you became close to. I am going to miss this remarkable series and its protagonists.

This is a book for you if you like excellent story-telling, mysteries or paranormal romance with a very urban touch and believable characters, some strewn in steamy situations, and some violent events. The stunning sixth and last book in The Gift Legacy series!
Highly recommended! A series to read again

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07M6C94JR

and on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Wings-Prey-Gift-Legacy-Book-ebook/dp/B07M6C94JR

Also by J.P. McLean

Read the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/JP-McLean/e/B00JSZOXTC

And Amazon UKhttps://www.amazon.co.uk/JP-McLean/e/B00JSZOXTC

And find more reviews and follow J. P. Mclean on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6429987.J_P_McLean

Connect to J.P Mclean via her website: https://jpmcleanauthor.com/

The next author is Sally Harris who has received some great reviews for her debut novel Haverscroft.

About the Book

Kate Keeling leaves all she knows and moves to Haverscroft House in an attempt to salvage her marriage. Little does she realise, Haverscroft’s dark secrets will drive her to question her sanity, her husband and fatally engulf her family unless she can stop the past repeating itself. Can Kate keep her children safe and escape Haverscroft in time, even if it will end her marriage?

Haverscroft is a gripping and chilling dark tale, a modern ghost story that will keep you turning its pages late into the night.

One of the early recent for the book

I love a good ghost story, and also the effortless blend of personal drama and magic realism displayed in the best of Graham Joyce’s novels. Haverscoft brings these two elements together in a hugely enjoyable book which, with its roots in the tradition of classic haunted house tales (bumps, knocking and mysterious happenings with doors), tells a layered tale of a precarious marriage which could well do without what’s about to happen…

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.co.uk/S.-A.-Harris/e/B07MYMTNWN

and on Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/S.-A.-Harris/e/B07MYMTNWN

Follow S.A. Harris on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1375010.S_A_Harris

Connect to Sally Harris via her website:https://www.saharrisauthor.com

The next author with a new review is Marcia Meara for The Emissary – A Riverbend Spinoff Novella which follows the story of a previous character in the series.

About The Emissary

Was Gabe Angelino, the mysterious truck driver in Finding Hunter: Riverbend Book 2, really an angel, as Willow Green believes? Or was he simply a good man, determined to help a stranger in need? Find out, as author Marcia Meara reveals the truth in the first Riverbend spinoff novella, The Emissary.

An angel’s work is never done—that’s part of the gig. But angels hadn’t been created to deal with such a vastly over-populated planet, rife with misery, suffering, and general chaos. Helping souls in peril has become a nearly impossible job, and even angelic tempers are frayed.

The archangel Azrael has had enough. He believes he’s found a way to ease their burden while saving jeopardized humans, too—hired help.

When Jake Daughtry lost his life rescuing a total stranger from certain death, he was on the fast track to Heaven. But that was before Azrael pulled him right out of line at the Pearly Gates. Now, as an Emissary to the Angels, Jake is taking to the highway in a quest to help souls in trouble. But the innate stubbornness of human beings bent on self-destruction is a challenge unlike any he’s ever faced.

It’s up to Jake and Azrael to bridge the gap between humans and angels. Will they ever convince the Council of Angels this endeavor is worthwhile? Can Jake figure out how to play by Azrael’s complicated rules? Will Azrael ever master the use of contractions in general conversation?

To find out the answers, hop on board Jake’s big red-and-white semi and travel the roads from the Florida Keys to north Georgia on an adventure that will make you laugh hard and cry even harder.

One of the recent reviews for the book

May 28, 2019 Janice Spina rated it Five Stars
This was an entertaining novella which can be a stand alone book. I did not read the Riverbend Series and still enjoyed this story. There are a myriad of emotions that are displayed in this tale about a man, Jake, who becomes an emissary to the angel, Azrael. He is enlisted to aid Azrael in helping humans who are troubled and in need.Marcia Meara has created well-defined characters who draw the reader in as they feel pain, angst, happiness, or sorrow. This is a creative piece that makes the reader believe that maybe this is all possible.

I was disappointed when the story ended and will have to pick up the next book to learn more about these characters. When a writer can endear her readers to her characters and story line enough that they care about their outcome, then she has successfully created a delightful book. I look forward to more books by this author.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Emissary-Riverbend-Spinoff-Novella-ebook/dp/B075Y2T3CL

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Emissary-Riverbend-Spinoff-Novella-ebook/dp/B075Y2T3CL/

A selection of books by Marcia Meara

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

And Amazon UK : https://www.amazon.co.uk/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

Read more reviews and follow Marcia Meara on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7242441.Marcia_Meara

Connect to Marcia via her website: http://marciamearawrites.com/

And the final author today with a recent review is Barbara Ann Mojica for Little Miss HISTORY book series, which is a compilation of three of the adventures in NYC. The Adventures of Little Miss HISTORY, Volume I: Adventure Books for All Ages

About Volume 1 of The Adventures of Little Miss HISTORY

Little Miss HISTORY has packed three of her NYC adventures into one exciting book. Visit the STATUE of LIBERTY the symbol of hope and promise for the immigrants who passed it on their way to fulfilling their dreams as they awaited inspection on ELLIS ISLAND. Then journey up the Hudson River to the USS INTREPID to witness and explore hands on one ship’s amazing history in WW II, the Vietnam War, the space age, and the war on terrorism. Hold on to your hats for a rollicking ride back into the nineteenth and twentieth centuries with Little Miss HISTORY!

One of the recent reviews for the book

Do you love history? Do you think that it is both possible and desirable to teach history to young children? If so, grab this compilation of three Little Miss History adventures and foster a love of history in your kids at an early age!

This volume demonstrates conclusively that teaching and learning history can be, and should be great fun. The stories shed light on both well-known and little-known nuggets of American history in a uniquely accessible way. They ignite the sense of historical discovery, sparking new questions, and promoting lively discussions.

Most highly recommended! 

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07Q78BSVF

and on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Adventures-Little-Miss-HISTORY-Adventure-ebook/dp/B07Q78BSVF

A selection of other books in the series

Discover all the books, read the reviews and buy: https://www.amazon.com/Barbara-Ann-Mojica/e/B00B9DOVKC

And on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Barbara-Ann-Mojica/e/B00B9DOVKC

Read more reviews and follow Barbara Ann on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6851359.Barbara_Ann_Mojica

Connect to Barbara Ann via her website: http://www.littlemisshistory.com

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you are leaving with a few books under your arm.. Sally.

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update #Reviews – Don Massenzio, Marcia Meara and Teri Polen


Welcome to the first of the author updates this week. As I was posting Christmas promotions for authors from mid-November I am going to be sharing reviews from that time onwards until we are up to date..

The first author with a recent review is Don Massenzio with his book Extra Innings: Can You Go Home Again?

About the book

Joe McLean hates his life. A lonely, divorced, middle-aged man, stuck in a cramped apartment, the only bright spot in Joe’s life is cheering on his hometown baseball team. Now, the local stadium, the place of many childhood and adult memories is being replaced. Joe desperately wants a piece of this iconic venue to preserve his memories and have some memorabilia from his happier past. That’s when unusual things begin to happen, and Joe begins to rethink the direction his life has taken. Can Joe take a different path in life? Can he use the special ability that he has acquired to change the course of his life? Will he realize the truth about old adage, you can never go home again? Follow the twists and turns in this supernatural story, Extra Innings, to find out.

One of the recent reviews for the book.

Captivating Time Travel  on November 24, 2018

When I first saw the cover for this book, not being a sports fan, I nearly passed on it. But when I read the blurb and saw it was about time travel, it became a must-read for me. I immediately wanted to root for Joe. With a failed marriage, a thankless, dead-end job, and not much to go home to at night, the guy deserves some happiness. Upon realizing the seat he purchased from a baseball stadium that held wonderful memories for him is a time machine, endless possibilities are at his fingertips. If you could travel back in time, what would you change about your life? Anything? Would those changes have unexpected ripple effects? Joe encounters several surprises along the way, and I laughed out loud at some situations he found himself in. Extra Innings is a fabulous, enjoyable story with several layers to include family drama, organized crime, and corporate mergers, and I was captivated throughout. The ending isn’t something I expected, but will leave you thinking about it for days after.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Extra-Innings-Can-Home-Again-ebook/dp/B07DHZ1SQC

And on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Extra-Innings-Can-Home-Again-ebook/dp/B07DHZ1SQC/

A selection of other books by Don Massenzio

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Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Don-Massenzio/e/B00JJVN0UI

and on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Don-Massenzio/e/B00JJVN0UI

Read more reviews and buy follow Don on Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8157756.Don_Massenzio

Connect to Don via his website: https://donmassenzio.wordpress.com

The next author is Marcia Meara – The Emissary 2: To Love Somebody. A Paranormal Fantasy.

About the Novella

In Marcia Meara’s second installment of The Emissary Trilogy, a Riverbend spinoff series of novellas, we find our three heroes at it again. Beautiful new places, exciting new adventures, and a whole assortment of new problems await them, bringing tears, laughter, and an extraordinary amount of love along with them.

Trouble never does a head count before showing up …They’re back!

Jake and Dodger, the first (and so far, only) Emissaries to the Angels, are on the road again.

They’re looking for mortals about to take a wrong turn. You know the ones—the kid thinking about stealing from a corner market or the man planning to lie about a coworker and destroy her career. Yeah, them. People on the brink of making a mistake that could send them down that wrong road and jeopardize their mortal souls.

Of course, there are rules by which the emissaries must play, and the archangel Azrael stands ready to enforce them. First and foremost, a person’s free will must never be compromised. Emissaries are allowed to use only the smallest of mental nudges. Thankfully, a whispered suggestion here or images of a better course of action there is usually all it takes. The potential mugger walks on by. The thief drops the wallet back into the unattended purse. But whether the results are obvious or not, Jake and Dodger are fully committed to making a positive difference, even as they struggle with issues of their own.

Will Dodger get over losing his chance to learn what true love is all about? Will Jake survive the grueling angelic equivalent of Boot Camp? Will Azrael ever finish the Official Emissarial Guidebook—including the chapter titled Do Not Even Think About It?

One thing’s for sure—Jake’s and Dodger’s strengths are growing daily, as they help more and more people make better choices. But is the price for so much power higher than they’re willing to pay?

One of the recent reviews for the book.

Love and Angels  on December 22, 2018

I enjoyed this book as much as I enjoyed Book 1 where we were introduced to Jake who is chosen by the Archangel Azreal to become an emissary to go back to earth and help people in need as well as help to steer them in the right direction. We also met Dodger, a younger man who was also taken under the angel’s wings to be groomed as Jake’s assistant emissary.

This story follows the relationship that blooms between Jake and Dodger as they continue doing their good deeds while still in training by Azrael on how to become fully experienced new angel assistants. It’s a beautiful story about goodness, and heartwarming to read as Jake becomes father-like to Dodger as time passes, filling the void for both with love and compassion for one another, especially Dodger who never knew love from his own father when he was alive.
Meara does a wonderful job with all three of these characters, engaging us into the story and filling our hearts with compassion for these same characters. Even as emissaries, Jake and Dodger live as humans and can still feel pain, despite the fact they can’t die again. This is a novella so I recommend reading Book 1 to familiarize you with the characters, you won’t be disappointed.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07JDP2B3D

and on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07JDP2B3D

A selection of other books by Marcia Meara

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

And Amazon UK : https://www.amazon.co.uk/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

Read more reviews and follow Marcia Meara on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7242441.Marcia_Meara

Connect to Marcia via her website/blog http://marciamearawrites.com/

Now for some Science Fiction/Fantasy from Teri Polen with The Gemini Connection which has received a recent review.

About The Gemini Connection.

Teen twin brothers Evan and Simon Resnik are fiercely loyal to each other and share an unusual bond—they experience each other’s emotions as their own and can sense where the other is. On their dying planet of Tage, scientists work tirelessly on its survival. Like the twins’ parents, Simon is a science prodigy, recruited at a young age to work with the brilliant creator of Scientific Innovations. To the bitter disappointment of their parents, Evan shows no aptitude or interest in science. As a Mindbender, he travels into the minds of scientists to locate buried memories, connect ideas and concepts, and battle recurring nightmares.

When Simon mysteriously disappears, Evan is plunged into a world of loss and unbearable guilt. For the first time, he can’t ‘feel’ Simon—it’s like he no longer exists. Evan blames himself. No one knows that he ignored his brother’s pleas for help on the night he went missing. A year later, Simon is still gone. Evan lost his twin, but Tage might have lost its last hope of survival when it’s discovered that Simon’s unfinished project could be its salvation. Evan is determined to find him—somewhere—and bring Simon home. Their unusual connection might be more extraordinary than they know, and the key to locating Simon.

One of the recent reviews for the book

Intense and Compelling  on December 30, 2018

I was up almost all night finishing this one, which really had me spellbound with the intensity, action, and compelling storyline as well as characters that were so believable. There was a lot here that I didn’t expect, which really kept me on the edge of my seat as this science fiction thriller unfolded.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Gemini-Connection-Teri-Polen/dp/1684330343/

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Gemini-Connection-Teri-Polen-ebook/dp/B07BFGFN66/

Also by Teri Polen

Read all the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Teri-Polen/e/B01MYOUA6V

And on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Sarah-Teri-Polen-ebook/dp/B01NBIFRF4

Read more reviews and follow Teri on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16114393.Teri_Polen

Connect to Teri via her website: https://teripolen.com/

Thank you for dropping in today… You can find all the authors and how to join them in this post: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore-free-author-promotion/

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Buy a Book for Christmas -#Supernatural #Fantasy – Marcia Meara, Charles E. Yallowitz, Stuart France and Sue Vincent


Time to get a little supernatural in the Christmas book promotions and indulge in some paranormal and Fantasy…..and no better place to start the proceedings than with Marcia Meara – The Emissary 2: To Love Somebody.

About the Novella

In Marcia Meara’s second installment of The Emissary Trilogy, a Riverbend spinoff series of novellas, we find our three heroes at it again. Beautiful new places, exciting new adventures, and a whole assortment of new problems await them, bringing tears, laughter, and an extraordinary amount of love along with them.

Trouble never does a head count before showing up …They’re back!

Jake and Dodger, the first (and so far, only) Emissaries to the Angels, are on the road again.

They’re looking for mortals about to take a wrong turn. You know the ones—the kid thinking about stealing from a corner market or the man planning to lie about a coworker and destroy her career. Yeah, them. People on the brink of making a mistake that could send them down that wrong road and jeopardize their mortal souls.

Of course, there are rules by which the emissaries must play, and the archangel Azrael stands ready to enforce them. First and foremost, a person’s free will must never be compromised. Emissaries are allowed to use only the smallest of mental nudges. Thankfully, a whispered suggestion here or images of a better course of action there is usually all it takes. The potential mugger walks on by. The thief drops the wallet back into the unattended purse. But whether the results are obvious or not, Jake and Dodger are fully committed to making a positive difference, even as they struggle with issues of their own.

Will Dodger get over losing his chance to learn what true love is all about? Will Jake survive the grueling angelic equivalent of Boot Camp? Will Azrael ever finish the Official Emissarial Guidebook—including the chapter titled Do Not Even Think About It?

One thing’s for sure—Jake’s and Dodger’s strengths are growing daily, as they help more and more people make better choices. But is the price for so much power higher than they’re willing to pay?

A recent review for the book

Not all sweetness and light this time, as Azrael gets serious about equipping both Jake and Dodger for their job of helping souls in trouble. I loved the chapter about the training session, and how Dodger and Jake reacted to the new strong-arm tactics.

I loved everything about this book just as I did the first in the series. The way Dodger tries to cope with his insecurities, and Jake’s capable and patient attitude. Azrael had me laughing, he tried hard not to lose it as he struggled to get his point across to these very different personalities.

You never really imagine an angel getting cranky, now do you?

The missing element between Jake and Dodger, always a possible father-son relationship, really gets going in this book. I found it beautifully written and very emotional as I never got to know my own father. Altogether though, I thought they made a great team as they travel around the country, helping us mortals keep on the straight and narrow.

A subtle reminder that some of us in this world can’t be helped, but wouldn’t it be wonderful to know someone cares enough to try!

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07JDP2B3D

and on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07JDP2B3D

A selection of other books by Marcia Meara

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

And Amazon UK : https://www.amazon.co.uk/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

Read more reviews and follow Marcia Meara on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7242441.Marcia_Meara

Connect to Marcia via her website/blog http://marciamearawrites.com/

Now time for some Fantasy courtesy of  War of Nytefall Book 2: Lost by Charles E. Yallowitz

About Lost

As the Vampire Civil War of Windemere rages on in the shadows, a mysterious girl appears to deliver mayhem to both sides.

Rumors of old-world vampires disappearing and mortals being attacked by an army of humanoid monsters have reached Clyde’s ears. Still learning how to rule the city of Nytefall as a strong, but fair leader instead of a vicious warlord, the former thief assumes he has rogue agents on his hands. Instead, his people stumble upon Lost, a teenage Dawn Fang looking for her father and aided by a decrepit bunny that might be an animated corpse. Bounding from one side of the Vampire Civil War to another, this carefree girl will turn out to be more trouble than she looks as all of the demons of her past emerge to get what they have been promised. Yet, her chaotic actions are nothing compared to the secret of her creation, which will change the very fabric of the Dawn Fangs’ world.

It is time for the womb-born to be revealed.

One of the recent reviews for the book

N. N. Light  4.0 out of 5 stars Yallowitz pens an all-encompassing world! October 5, 2018

As the vampire civil war intensifies, a new player emerges and like most in power, judging this teenage girl by her appearance is a deadly mistake. Her name is Lost and she’s a Dawn Fang. She looks innocent and keeps talking about her mission to find her father. Chaos follows in her wake, causing mass confusion between Clyde and the Dawn Fangs as well as Xavier, his wife and their subjects. There’s an army of followers looking for Lost, too. When she reveals she’s womb-born and not fang-born, the vampiric world erupts. Once reunited with her parents, will Lost obey vampiric law or will she destroy them all?

Lost continues where Loyalty left off and for the most part, the plot moves at a good pace. Lost is a deceptive character, appearing innocent yet she’s one powerful vampire. Lost reminds me of Darla from Buffy and Lamia Zacharius from Death Coach. Betrayal, especially in a vampire’s world, is a criminal offense and there’s plenty of it to go around. Yallowitz pens an all-encompassing world with quite a few twists and turns. The ending, though, was a little let-down. It can be read as a standalone, but you’ll understand characters’ motivation if you read book one first. Perfect for this time of year!

Favorite Character/Quote: “Fine, but after we take naps. A grumpy Princess General is a sloppy Princess General.”

Head over and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07H4X3P6C

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Lost-War-Nytefall-Book-2-ebook/dp/B07H4X3P6C

A selection of the most recent books by Charles Yallowitz

 

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Charles-E-Yallowitz/e/B00AX1MSQA

and Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Charles-E-Yallowitz/e/B00AX1MSQA

Read more reviews and follow Charles on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6965804.Charles_E_Yallowitz

Connect to Charles via his blog: https://legendsofwindemere.com/

The next authors bring us fantasy in the form of a graphic novel…Mister Fox – Winter’s Tail by Stuart France and Sue Vincent

About the book

Where is Mister Fox? The night howls in triumph… pale eyes watch from the shadows… It is the night of the Hunter’s Moon and the dancing ground should be alive with flame as the Foxes dance in the dark. But the dancing ground is deserted. They are gone. No earthly light pierces the gloom, only the sickly glow of a veiled moon. Don and Wen stare in disbelief. Whispers in the shadows, a faceless voice, a tale of ambush and betrayal… of Foxes driven from their home and scattered, condemned to wander far from their ancestral lands. Charles James Fox wounded… none has seen him since that fateful night. Will the Hunter’s Moon pass in darkness? Have the Demon Dogs succeeded in their mission to bring eternal winter to the land? Or will their celebrations be short-lived? …For none may mar the Dancing Ground Nor add their darkness to the night, Nor stand against the Silver Fox, The wielder of the Staff of Light…

One of the recent reviews for the book

The graphic novels that make up the Mister Fox series are, frankly, weird. Character development, plot, pacing, or almost any of the elements I would normally demand from a book—especially one I like—are virtually irrelevant. Instead the authors have created a visually stunning retelling of the cycle of the seasons, presented as an otherworldly re-enactment of a myth.

Every culture has stories of supernatural interference with the cycle of nature. Persephone has to go to Hades before she can come back to bring spring. The great summer and winter solstices have to be observed so planting and harvesting can be scheduled. Night has to follow day. Egyptian sun god Ra must fight the underworld serpent Apep every night in order for the day to return. The Greek goddesses of day and night, Hemia and Nyx, meet each day. “Nyx and Hemera draw near and greet one another as they pass the great threshold of bronze: and while the one is about to go down into the house, the other comes out at the door.”–Hesiod’s Theogony, c. 700BCE”

And how do you mark this importance? By showing what happens when the cycle is broken of course. When Persephone’s distraught mother Demeter, the Goddess of the Harvest, can’t find her daughter, all the crops fail. It’s only the return of Persephone every spring that allows crops to grow.

And, as all believers know, it’s better not to leave anything this important in the laps of easily distractable deities. So you build temples, chapels, stone circles. Conduct ceremonies, say prayers, and even channel your gods through ritual to ensure they stay on task.

And that’s where Mister Charles Fox and his band of (anonymous) dancers come in. By firelight as autumn moves toward winter, Summer, in the form of a giant crow, wages epic battle against the foxes who herald the change of season and the arrival of winter. Their primeval battle is a dance, set to drum and pipe music and waged against the flickering flames of fire and torch.

But when the friends of the foxes, Wen and Don, arrive expecting to see the usual dance, they’re shocked to find all the foxes have disappeared. Their search for their friends turns up a story that starts in 1591…

For this modern day recreation of a myth, the graphic novel format is perfect. The flames glow against the darkness, wrapping the dancers in a layer of magic and fantasy. And you’ve just got to love a background mystery that begins with, “The year,” he said, “is fifteen-hundred and ninety-one…”

Like all books in this series, Mister Fox Winter’s Tail is beautiful, fun, confusing, and leaves you feeling there are a lot more things going on than the few words and gorgeous pictures tell you (besides that pun in the title, of course!). And, while there are only a small number of pages, if a picture is worth a thousand words, this book is an epic.

Read the reviews and buy on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Mister-Fox-Winters-Tail-4/dp/1910478199

And Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Mister-Fox-Winters-Tail-4/dp/1910478199

A selection of other books by Sue Vincent and Stuart France

Read the reviews and buy the books from the following links.

Sue Vincent UKUSAFranceGermany

Stuart France UKUSAFranceGermany

And you can find more reviews and follow Sue on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/list/6551588.Sue_Vincent

Connect to Sue and Stuart through their book website:  http://www.franceandvincent.com/

I hope you have found one or two fantastic or supernatural books to add to your Christmas book list…thanks for dropping by.. Sally

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – New book on the shelves – The Emissary 2: To Love Somebody by Marcia Meara


Delighted to feature the latest release by Marcia Meara – The Emissary 2: To Love Somebody.

About the Novella

In Marcia Meara’s second installment of The Emissary Trilogy, a Riverbend spinoff series of novellas, we find our three heroes at it again. Beautiful new places, exciting new adventures, and a whole assortment of new problems await them, bringing tears, laughter, and an extraordinary amount of love along with them.

Trouble never does a head count before showing up …

They’re back!

Jake and Dodger, the first (and so far, only) Emissaries to the Angels, are on the road again.

They’re looking for mortals about to take a wrong turn. You know the ones—the kid thinking about stealing from a corner market or the man planning to lie about a coworker and destroy her career. Yeah, them. People on the brink of making a mistake that could send them down that wrong road and jeopardize their mortal souls.

Of course, there are rules by which the emissaries must play, and the archangel Azrael stands ready to enforce them. First and foremost, a person’s free will must never be compromised. Emissaries are allowed to use only the smallest of mental nudges. Thankfully, a whispered suggestion here or images of a better course of action there is usually all it takes. The potential mugger walks on by. The thief drops the wallet back into the unattended purse. But whether the results are obvious or not, Jake and Dodger are fully committed to making a positive difference, even as they struggle with issues of their own.

Will Dodger get over losing his chance to learn what true love is all about? Will Jake survive the grueling angelic equivalent of Boot Camp? Will Azrael ever finish the Official Emissarial Guidebook—including the chapter titled Do Not Even Think About It?

One thing’s for sure—Jake’s and Dodger’s strengths are growing daily, as they help more and more people make better choices. But is the price for so much power higher than they’re willing to pay?

An early review for the book

This novella is beautiful. Its a very touching story and offers so much in development of the characters and their feelings. In this day and age, we can all enjoy a wonderful novella like this.

Head over and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07JDP2B3D

and on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07JDP2B3D

A selection of other books by Marcia Meara

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

And Amazon UK : https://www.amazon.co.uk/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

Read more reviews and follow Marcia Meara on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7242441.Marcia_Meara

About Marcia Meara

Marcia Meara is a native Floridian, and lives in Sanford, just north of Orlando, with her husband of 30+ years, four large cats, and two small dachshunds. When not working on her books and blogs, she spends her time gardening, and enjoying the surprising amount of wildlife that manages to make a home in her suburban yard.

At the age of five, Marcia declared she wanted to be an author, and is ecstatic that a mere 64 years later, she finally wrote “Wake-Robin Ridge,” her first novel. Making up for lost time, she has published five more novels and a spinoff novella over the last four years:

Connect to Marcia Meara

Website and blog: http://marciamearawrites.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MarciaMeara
Facebook: www.facebook.com/marcia.meara.writer
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/marciameara/

Thank you for calling in and it would be great if you could spread the news about Marcia’s new book.. thanks Sally

Smorgasbord Posts from Your Archives – More Christmas at the House of 1,000 Santas by Marcia Meara


You might be surprised to know that Marcia Meara is a Christmas fanatic… especially when it comes to trees and her collection of Santas.. some of which are 70 years old.. But, seeing is believing and here is just a handful of photos in evidence.

More Christmas at the House of 1,000 Santas by Marcia Meara

Okay, for those of you interested in such things…few though you may be…here’s another peek at what a 50-year collection of Santas looks like. Because I didn’t get everything put out this year, thanks to an unrelenting editing deadline, these pictures were taken 3 Christmases (and a dozen or so Santas) ago. Things are pretty much the same, except for a bit less this year, because…as I mentioned…deadline! Hope this puts you in the holiday spirit…or makes you want to avert your eyes. Whichever makes you happier.

A full-length photo of my six-foot tall Santa, with no lights out on the tree this time.

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My library tree, with St. Nicholas on top.

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The Pass through from the library to the kitchen and the Holly Jolly Santa shelf.

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On the kitchen side, my collection of miniature Santas, one of which is over 70 years old.

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And last, a blurry overview of the family room. If you prefer warm, traditional, and cozy, this is the spot. (Over 50 Santas on that mantel, btw.) If you like frosty snowmen and icicles, the living room’s where you’d want to hang out. Me, I love both, and have room for both now, so, what the heck. I’m not a less is more kinda person. In fact, I’m pretty sure more is more, especially at Christmas!

And speaking of Christmas, my sincere and happiest wishes to all of you. May you have the best one, EVER!

xmascard1

©Marcia Meara 2014

You can see more of Marcia’s amazing collection: https://marciamearawrites.com/2014/12/23/more-christmas-at-the-house-of-1000-santas/

Marcia has selected this piece of festive music to share with you. George Winston with Carol of the Bells

 

About Marcia Meara

Marcia Meara is a native Floridian, and lives in Sanford, just north of Orlando, with her husband of 30+ years, four large cats, and two small dachshunds. When not working on her books and blogs, she spends her time gardening, and enjoying the surprising amount of wildlife that manages to make a home in her suburban yard.

At the age of five, Marcia declared she wanted to be an author, and is ecstatic that a mere 64 years later, she finally wrote “Wake-Robin Ridge,” her first novel. Making up for lost time, she has published five more novels and a spinoff novella over the last four years.

Now for an update on the recent release by Marcia Meara, The Emissary – A Riverbend Spinoff Novella which follows the story of a previous character in the series.

About The Emissary

Was Gabe Angelino, the mysterious truck driver in Finding Hunter: Riverbend Book 2, really an angel, as Willow Green believes? Or was he simply a good man, determined to help a stranger in need? Find out, as author Marcia Meara reveals the truth in the first Riverbend spinoff novella, The Emissary.

An angel’s work is never done—that’s part of the gig. But angels hadn’t been created to deal with such a vastly over-populated planet, rife with misery, suffering, and general chaos. Helping souls in peril has become a nearly impossible job, and even angelic tempers are frayed.

The archangel Azrael has had enough. He believes he’s found a way to ease their burden while saving jeopardized humans, too—hired help.

When Jake Daughtry lost his life rescuing a total stranger from certain death, he was on the fast track to Heaven. But that was before Azrael pulled him right out of line at the Pearly Gates. Now, as an Emissary to the Angels, Jake is taking to the highway in a quest to help souls in trouble. But the innate stubbornness of human beings bent on self-destruction is a challenge unlike any he’s ever faced.

It’s up to Jake and Azrael to bridge the gap between humans and angels. Will they ever convince the Council of Angels this endeavor is worthwhile? Can Jake figure out how to play by Azrael’s complicated rules? Will Azrael ever master the use of contractions in general conversation?

To find out the answers, hop on board Jake’s big red-and-white semi and travel the roads from the Florida Keys to north Georgia on an adventure that will make you laugh hard and cry even harder.

A recent review for the book.

As a spinoff, I wouldn’t recommend reading this before the Riverbend books, unless you don’t mind plot spoilers. If you read Finding Hunter, and wondered what was up with the mysterious Gabe Angelino, this book will answer all your questions.

This is a perfect read for this time of year–cozy, magical, and even set in winter. Jake Daughtry, AKA Gabe Angelino, died–and then the angel Azrael put him to work helping lost souls. There’s liable to be some issues along the way–angels aren’t the cuddliest of people, and Jake has a bit of a sense of humor–but there’s also going to be wonder, and hope, and examples of humanity’s best and worst.

At 105 pages, this story packs a lot into a short amount of time, making it a great read for a busy season, without the story being rushed. It wraps up satisfactorily at the end, but leaves more room for the next adventure. And in between–is a sweet story, full of faith without hitting too heavily on dogma, willing to have a little fun with the idea of angels, and the emissaries they might need to get their jobs done.

The relationships between the characters grow pretty quickly like any novella, but are engaging for all that. There’s not as much space for lovely descriptions of the landscape, but there are song titles and funny place settings at the chapter headings, such as “close to here but not far from there.” It’s a story of journeys, physical and spiritual, and always in motion. No matter the tragedies that form obstacles along the way, you know that there will be a happy ending coming, because this is that kind of book–the sort that wraps you like a warm blanket. A great read for fans of Marcia’s work, and fans of cozy mysteries with a bit of the supernatural.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Emissary-Riverbend-Spinoff-Novella-ebook/dp/B075Y2T3CL

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Emissary-Riverbend-Spinoff-Novella-ebook/dp/B075Y2T3C

A selection of other books by Marcia Meara

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

And Amazon UK : https://www.amazon.co.uk/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

Follow Marcia Meara on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7242441.Marcia_Meara

Connect to Marcia via her website: http://marciamearawrites.com/

My thanks to Marcia to sharing this post in Christmas week and I am sure that you join me in wishing her and her family a Merry Christmas too.. thanks Sally

 

 

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Christmas Book Fair – Judith Barrow, Shehanne Moore, Judy Penz Sheluk and Marcia Meara.


Thank you for dropping in to the last Christmas Bookstore of the week. Another five authors with terrific books that would make wonderful gifts.

The first author is Judith Barrow with more reviews for her latest book A Hundred Tiny Threads, a book that I enjoyed and reviewed a few weeks ago. Definitely a gift for someone who loves family dramas.

About A Hundred Tiny Threads

It’s 1911 and Winifred Duffy is a determined young woman eager for new experiences, for a life beyond the grocer’s shop counter ruled over by her domineering mother.

The scars of Bill Howarth’s troubled childhood linger. The only light in his life comes from a chance encounter with Winifred, the girl he determines to make his wife.

Meeting her friend Honora’s silver-tongued brother turns Winifred’s heart upside down. But Honora and Conal disappear, after a suffrage rally turns into a riot, and abandoned Winifred has nowhere to turn but home.

The Great War intervenes, sending Bill abroad to be hardened in a furnace of carnage and loss. When he returns his dream is still of Winifred and the life they might have had… Back in Lancashire, worn down by work and the barbed comments of narrow-minded townsfolk, Winifred faces difficult choices in love and life.

One of the recent reviews for the book

This is the first book I have read by Judith Barrow and it certainly won’t be the last! A superbly written novel set in 1911 and during the First World War. Winifred Duffy is disillusioned with her mundane job and domineering mother and wants to become involved in the Suffrage Movement. She is persuaded by her Irish friend Honora to go to a meeting and is determined to play her part in trying to get women the vote. Winifred is introduced to Honora’s brother and falls in love for the first time in her life. Can it last?

Bill Howarth works in the mines and has a serious accident which leaves him out of work and disgruntled. He worships Winifred from afar and is determined to be with her. However, things take a turn for the worse and then Bill is drafted into the war. When he comes out, he is battled scarred and weary, but still his needs for Winifred are undiminished.

How will the story unfold? Will it end in tears or happiness for our three main characters?

An excellent read from start to finish, great narrative and Judith Barrow is an author to be commended.

Head over read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/100-Tiny-Threads-Judith-Barrow-ebook/dp/B073W1LTSR

and at Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/100-Tiny-Threads-Judith-Barrow-ebook/dp/B073W1LTSR

Also by Judith Barrow

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Judith-Barrow/e/B0043RZJV6

and Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Judith-Barrow/e/B0043RZJV6

Read more reviews and follow Judith on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3295663.Judith_Barrow

Connect to Judith via her blog: judithbarrowblog.com/

The next author with a shelf full of books that would make any historical romance lover happy is Shehanne Moore. Here is Splendor ( London Jewel Thieves Book Two) which was published in May this year.

About Splendor

The only thing he hates more than losing at chess is marriage…

For Splendor, former servant to London’s premiere jewel thieves, pretending to be someone else is all in a day’s work. So when she learns of a chess tournament—a men’s chess tournament—with a ten thousand pound prize, pretending to be a man is the obvious move. The money will be enough to set her fiancé up in his own business so they can finally marry, and more importantly, it’ll pay off her bills and keep her out of debtor’s prison. But she doesn’t plan on her opponent, the rakish Kendall Winterborne, Earl Stillmore, being a sore loser—and a drunken one, at that. But before she can collect her prize, she finds herself facing the most merciless man in London across a pair of dueling pistols at dawn. Chess may be Splendor’s game, but she’s never fired a pistol before. And dressed as a man with ill-fitting shoes on the slippery grass and borrowed glasses that make it hard to see, she’s certain she’s finally tipped her own king.

Bitter divorcee Kendall Winterborne, Earl Stillmore, is the ton’s most ruthless heartbreaker. And he’s got three pet peeves: kitchen maids, marriage…and losing. So when he realizes the “man” opposite him has entered the chess tournament under false pretenses, he’s in the perfect position to extort the little chit. But that’s before the exasperating woman begins to slip beneath his skin, and soon all he can think about is slipping beneath her skirts. But the confounded woman is engaged to someone else, and worse—she’s nothing but a former kitchen maid, just like the one that lured his father into the marriage that ruined the family name. And his ex-wife taught him more than he cared to know about why marriage was the worst kind of checkmate of all…

One of the reviews for the book

I loved every delicious page of this book. The story of Splendor’s tempestuous rise from skivvy to become the wife of the gorgeously glowering Kendall Winterborne, third Earl of Stillmore, is an enthralling read. Exhilarating, witty and wicked, as well as wonderfully original. Ms Moore has a voice like no other and it is as irresistible as chocolate brownies. I gobbled it up. This is Georgian England, so of course there is a rollicking duel, class warfare and subjugation of women, but no one is going to get the better of the brilliantly ballsy Splendor, whether it’s at chess, at disguise or at love. Yet underneath all the abundant fun and crazy cross dressing there runs a powerful and serious comment on what women have had to face throughout history.

In Splendor Ms Moore has created a cracking champion for the female of the species, infinitely more deadly than the male. She comes out fists swinging, but the vulnerability that she is so determined to keep hidden from view is immensely touching. And the finale will capture your heart. Shehanne Moore can spin a tale that is a romance like no other. Savour it.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Splendor-London-Jewel-Thieves-Book-ebook/dp/B071S9W9W

And on Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Splendor-London-Jewel-Thieves-Book-ebook/dp/B071S9W9WN

Also by Shehanne Moore

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Shehanne-Moore/e/B00CMBK7BW/

And on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Shehanne-Moore/e/B00CMBK7BW

Read more reviews and follow Shehanne on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7029905.Shehanne_Moore

Connect to Shehanne via her blog: https://shehannemoore.wordpress.com/

The next author is Judy Penz Sheluk and her novel Skeletons in the Attic – A Marketville Mystery which is now available in audio for those who love to listen to their books as well as read them.

Judy has some FREE codes for the audio book as she would like obtain more reviews for the book. If you are interested please connect to Judy via her website listed below.

51wcykazzl-_uy250_About the book

Calamity (Callie) Barnstable isn’t surprised to learn she’s the sole beneficiary of her late father’s estate, though she is shocked to discover she has inherited a house in the town of Marketville—a house she didn’t know existed. However, there are conditions attached to Callie’s inheritance: she must move to Marketville, live in the house, and solve her mother’s murder.

Callie’s not keen on dredging up a thirty-year-old mystery, but if she doesn’t do it, there’s a scheming psychic named Misty Rivers who is more than happy to expose the Barnstable family secrets. Determined to thwart Misty and fulfill her father’s wishes, Callie accepts the challenge. But is she ready to face the skeletons hidden in the attic?

One of the reviews for the book

The characters spring to life with their words and actions. Hints and clues are woven throughout the story and kept me guessing as the mystery unfolded. First of all the main character is named Calamity Barnstable and with a name like that you know it is going to be unique and interesting. Calamity goes by Callie Barnstable and inherits a house from her father that she never even knew existed. She is stunned when her father’s lawyer gives her the keys and a nice budget to work with as well as a thirty-year-old mystery to solve.

This story had so much going on that you could feel the frustration of this woman that had been tossed into a mystery that took place when she was six years old. A missing mother, a psychic, a nosy neighbor and other completely colorful cast of characters makes this book such an enjoyable read. Each chapter brought new suspects and helpful hints to light.

I almost gave it a 4.5 heart rating because of the hurried ending, but I enjoyed the book so much I stayed with the five.

Read the  reviews for the book and buy in print and audio: https://www.amazon.com/Skeletons-Attic-Marketville-Mystery-Book-ebook/dp/B01IQ0N3X6

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Skeletons-Attic-1-Marketville-Mystery/dp/1772232645

Also by Judy Penz Sheluk

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Read the reviews and buy all the books: http://www.amazon.com/Judy-Penz-Sheluk/e/B00O74NX04

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Judy-Penz-Sheluk/e/B00O74NX04/

Read more reviews and follow Judy on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8602696.Judy_Penz_Sheluk

61kxh8dcqrl-_uy250_Connect to Judy via her Blog: http://www.judypenzsheluk.com/

Our next author who has a series that would make fantasy readers very happy is Marcia Meara and here is her most recent release, The Emissary – A Riverbend Spinoff Novella which follows the story of a previous character in the series.

About The Emissary

Was Gabe Angelino, the mysterious truck driver in Finding Hunter: Riverbend Book 2, really an angel, as Willow Green believes? Or was he simply a good man, determined to help a stranger in need? Find out, as author Marcia Meara reveals the truth in the first Riverbend spinoff novella, The Emissary.

An angel’s work is never done—that’s part of the gig. But angels hadn’t been created to deal with such a vastly over-populated planet, rife with misery, suffering, and general chaos. Helping souls in peril has become a nearly impossible job, and even angelic tempers are frayed.

The archangel Azrael has had enough. He believes he’s found a way to ease their burden while saving jeopardized humans, too—hired help.

When Jake Daughtry lost his life rescuing a total stranger from certain death, he was on the fast track to Heaven. But that was before Azrael pulled him right out of line at the Pearly Gates. Now, as an Emissary to the Angels, Jake is taking to the highway in a quest to help souls in trouble. But the innate stubbornness of human beings bent on self-destruction is a challenge unlike any he’s ever faced.

It’s up to Jake and Azrael to bridge the gap between humans and angels. Will they ever convince the Council of Angels this endeavor is worthwhile? Can Jake figure out how to play by Azrael’s complicated rules? Will Azrael ever master the use of contractions in general conversation?

To find out the answers, hop on board Jake’s big red-and-white semi and travel the roads from the Florida Keys to north Georgia on an adventure that will make you laugh hard and cry even harder.

One of the recent reviews for the book

As a spinoff, I wouldn’t recommend reading this before the Riverbend books, unless you don’t mind plot spoilers. If you read Finding Hunter, and wondered what was up with the mysterious Gabe Angelino, this book will answer all your questions.

This is a perfect read for this time of year–cozy, magical, and even set in winter. Jake Daughtry, AKA Gabe Angelino, died–and then the angel Azrael put him to work helping lost souls. There’s liable to be some issues along the way–angels aren’t the cuddliest of people, and Jake has a bit of a sense of humor–but there’s also going to be wonder, and hope, and examples of humanity’s best and worst.

At 105 pages, this story packs a lot into a short amount of time, making it a great read for a busy season, without the story being rushed. It wraps up satisfactorily at the end, but leaves more room for the next adventure. And in between–is a sweet story, full of faith without hitting too heavily on dogma, willing to have a little fun with the idea of angels, and the emissaries they might need to get their jobs done.

The relationships between the characters grow pretty quickly like any novella, but are engaging for all that. There’s not as much space for lovely descriptions of the landscape, but there are song titles and funny place settings at the chapter headings, such as “close to here but not far from there.” It’s a story of journeys, physical and spiritual, and always in motion. No matter the tragedies that form obstacles along the way, you know that there will be a happy ending coming, because this is that kind of book–the sort that wraps you like a warm blanket. A great read for fans of Marcia’s work, and fans of cozy mysteries with a bit of the supernatural.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Emissary-Riverbend-Spinoff-Novella-ebook/dp/B075Y2T3CL

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Emissary-Riverbend-Spinoff-Novella-ebook/dp/B075Y2T3C

A selection of books by Marcia Meara

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

And Amazon UK : https://www.amazon.co.uk/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

Read more reviews and follow Marcia Meara on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7242441.Marcia_Meara

Connect to Marcia via her website: http://marciamearawrites.com/

I am sure there will be a book or two that you might add to your TBR for your own reading pleasure or might buy as a gift for somebody else. Thanks Sally

Smorgasbord Book Promotion – Air Your Reviews – Deanie Humphrys-Dunne, M.J.Mallon and Marcia Meara


My first author with a recent review for her memoir My Life at Sweetbriar : A Life Changed by Horses, is Deanie Humphrys-Dunne.

About My Life at Sweetbriar

What if you grew up on a horse farm and your single passion was to become a champion horseback rider? The problem is, you were born with a disability. Doctors tell your parents you’ll never walk, let alone ride. What will happen next? What does her dad do that changes her life? Will a failed racehorse and a handicapped girl become a winning team? This is the author’s true story of her journey. Even if Deanie prevails, will she find exactly the right horse to help her win?

One of the recent reviews for the book on Goodreads

Nov 09, 2017 Sarah Hays rated it it was amazing  ·  Excellent read!

This is a wonderful story about a girl following her dreams! Growing up, Deanie loved to riding horses. It was difficult at first as she was born with cerebral palsy, but her father helped her to become an awesome rider. Deanie began to participate in competition and she became a champion rider! I recommend it to horse lovers everywhere!

Read all the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/My-Life-Sweetbrier-Changed-Horses-ebook/dp/B0711P67DM

And on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/My-Life-Sweetbrier-Changed-Horses-ebook/dp/B0711P67DM

Also by Deanie Humphrys-Dunne

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Deanie-Humphrys-Dunne/e/B003FFS15S

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Deanie-Humphrys-Dunne/e/B003FFS15

Follow Deanie Humphrys- Dunne on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3309880.Deanie_Humphrys_Dunne

Connect to Deanie on her website: http://www.childrensbookswithlifelessons.com

Now a recent review for M.J. Mallon for her book The Curse of Time: Book One – Bloodstone is a YA fantasy and science fiction adventure.

About The Curse of Time

On Amelina Scott’s thirteenth birthday, her father disappears under mysterious circumstances. Saddened by this traumatic event, she pieces together details of a curse that has stricken the heart and soul of her family.

Amelina longs for someone to confide in. Her once carefree mother has become angry and despondent. One day a strange black cat and a young girl, named Esme appear. Immediately, Esme becomes the sister Amelina never had. The only catch is that Esme must remain a prisoner, living within the mirrors of Amelina’s house.

Dreams and a puzzling invitation convince Amelina the answer to her family’s troubles lies within the walls of the illusive Crystal Cottage. Undaunted by her mother’s warnings, Amelina searches for the cottage on an isolated Cambridgeshire pathway where she encounters a charismatic young man, named Ryder. At the right moment, he steps out of the shadows, rescuing her from the unwanted attention of two male troublemakers.

With the help of an enchanted paint set, Amelina meets the eccentric owner of the cottage, Leanne, who instructs her in the art of crystal magic. In time, she earns the right to use three wizard stones. The first awakens her spirit to discover a time of legends, and later, leads her to the Bloodstone, the supreme cleansing crystal which has the power to restore the balance of time. Will Amelina find the power to set her family free?

A YA/middle grade fantasy set in Cambridge, England exploring various themes/aspects: Light, darkness, time, shadows, a curse, magic, deception, crystals, art, poetry, friendships, teen relationships, eating disorders, self-harm, anxiety, depression, family, puzzles, mystery, a black cat, music, a mix of sadness, counterbalanced by a touch of humour.

The most recent review for the book

Enjoyable on 19 November 2017

The Curse of Time is a young adult fantasy novel set in Cambridge, England. This book has a complex mix of themes running through it, and at times my head did spin as I tried to keep up. Amelina is a likeable character. She receives enchanted gifts and dreams about an elusive cottage. Her parents can’t offer her the support she needs, and instead, she turns to Esme, a friend who lives in the mirror.

As a qualified crystal therapist, I liked the inclusion of crystals throughout the story.

Our clasped hands shook with fear. I waited, afraid to witness the effect the Black Obsidian would have on my friends and me next. Our eyes met, and we strengthened our hold, clasping our hands tighter. The blackness of the moment grew. A flowing ribbon of dark, velvety light encircled our hands and bound our palms together sealing our bond.

There is also a strong personal development theme running through the book which I enjoyed. As with all coming-of-age stories, Amelina grows as the story unfold. Learning who to trust, and how to use her gifts.

Enjoyable novel. I reviewed The Curse of Time as part of Rosie Amber’s Book Review Team #RBRT

Read the other reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B074CDJPY9

And on Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/M-J-Mallon/e/B074CGNK4L

Follow M.J. Mallon on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17064826.M_J_Mallon

Connect to Marjorie Mallon via her website: https://mjmallon.com/

Now for an update on the recent release by Marcia Meara, The Emissary – A Riverbend Spinoff Novella which follows the story of a previous character in the series.

About The Emissary

Was Gabe Angelino, the mysterious truck driver in Finding Hunter: Riverbend Book 2, really an angel, as Willow Green believes? Or was he simply a good man, determined to help a stranger in need? Find out, as author Marcia Meara reveals the truth in the first Riverbend spinoff novella, The Emissary.

An angel’s work is never done—that’s part of the gig. But angels hadn’t been created to deal with such a vastly over-populated planet, rife with misery, suffering, and general chaos. Helping souls in peril has become a nearly impossible job, and even angelic tempers are frayed.

The archangel Azrael has had enough. He believes he’s found a way to ease their burden while saving jeopardized humans, too—hired help.

When Jake Daughtry lost his life rescuing a total stranger from certain death, he was on the fast track to Heaven. But that was before Azrael pulled him right out of line at the Pearly Gates. Now, as an Emissary to the Angels, Jake is taking to the highway in a quest to help souls in trouble. But the innate stubbornness of human beings bent on self-destruction is a challenge unlike any he’s ever faced.

It’s up to Jake and Azrael to bridge the gap between humans and angels. Will they ever convince the Council of Angels this endeavor is worthwhile? Can Jake figure out how to play by Azrael’s complicated rules? Will Azrael ever master the use of contractions in general conversation?

To find out the answers, hop on board Jake’s big red-and-white semi and travel the roads from the Florida Keys to north Georgia on an adventure that will make you laugh hard and cry even harder.

A recent review for the book.

I adored this book. A very different take on Angels that piqued my interest right away. The main character, Jake, has died but he isn’t exactly dead, nor is he an Angel. Marcia Meara has a way of connecting the reader to her well-developed characters that makes them stay with you for a long time. The story leads you through the afterlife (sort of) of Jake, a good guy who learns to be even better through many a trial. I really can’t wait for a sequel to this novella!

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Emissary-Riverbend-Spinoff-Novella-ebook/dp/B075Y2T3CL

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Emissary-Riverbend-Spinoff-Novella-ebook/dp/B075Y2T3C

A selection of books by Marcia Meara

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

And Amazon UK : https://www.amazon.co.uk/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

Follow Marcia Meara on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7242441.Marcia_Meara

Connect to Marcia via her website: http://marciamearawrites.com/

Thank you for dropping in today and it would be wonderful if you could spread the news of these reviews around the usual places.. thanks Sally

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – Sacha Black, Marcia Meara and M.J. Mallon


Welcome to the first of the bookstore updates today and the first author with news is Sacha Black who has combined her guide to create characters with a darker side, 13 Steps to Evil with a workbook in one edition. Both books are also available separately.

About the Textbook and Workbook set

2 Jam-packed guides with over 300 pages of tips and tricks to help you master your villains

13 Steps To Evil – How To Craft A Superbad Villain – Textbook

Your hero is not the most important character in your book. Your villain is.

Are you fed up of drowning in two-dimensional villains? Frustrated with creating clichés? And failing to get your reader to root for your villain?

In 13 Steps to Evil, you’ll discover:

+ How to develop a villain’s mindset
+ A step-by-step guide to creating your villain from the ground up
+ Why getting to the core of a villain’s personality is essential to make them credible
+ What pitfalls and clichés to avoid as well as the tropes your story needs

Finally, there is a comprehensive writing guide to help you create superbad villains. Whether you’re just starting out or are a seasoned writer, this book will help power up your bad guy and give them that extra edge.

These lessons will help you master and control your villainous minions, navigate and gain the perfect balance of good and evil, as well as strengthening your villain to give your story the tension and punch it needs.

If you like dark humour, learning through examples and want to create the best villains you can, then you’ll love Sacha Black’s guide to crafting superbad villains. Read 13 Steps to Evil today and start creating kick-ass villains.

***

13 Steps To Evil – How To Craft A Superbad Villain – Workbook

Sacha Black’s book 13 Steps To Evil – How To Craft A Superbad Villain showed writers how to create their ultimate villain in an easy and humorous, step-by-step guide.

This workbook puts those lessons to use by building on each chapter in 13 Steps To Evil and guiding you through the development of your indisputable bad guy. It’s time to get to the core of your villain and supersize that evil.

Inside the workbook you’ll find hundreds of thought provoking questions, exercises and creativity boosting prompts. This resource will help you:

•Choose the perfect villain traits
•Create sinister character histories and motives
•Avoid pesky clichés
•Design conflict and tension that grips your reader
•Build your market knowledge so you create a villain that sells

Craft your characters through easy to digest exercises that empower you to conquer your villain for life.

Read the 13 Steps To Evil Workbook today and start creating kick-ass bad guys.

One of the recent reviews for 13 Steps to Evil – How to Craft Superbad Villains

I consider myself something of a collector of writing books. Over the past 3 years I purchase as many writing books as I do fiction book on different subjects to strengthen my skills as a writer and to build on my writer toolkit. I have a few authors I stick with, a few series I frequent, then every so often I’ll grab one if it has the right kind of title. This book fell into my third category, so props on the title.

I’ve been working on Point-of-View and tips on choosing the best POV to tell your story, and in one book they suggested that you should never show your villain’s point-of-view until you are at least 3/4ths of the way through your story. That struck me as odd, so I began to think of what the story would or could look like if I were to look through the villain’s perspective the whole way? I didn’t expand much on the thought at the time, but sure enough, I came across this title and decided “Oh, I gotta buy this.”

Let me tell you, I’m so glad I did. I got the Kindle version, but I’ll most likely invest in an actual paperback copy in the future so I can make notes and loan it to my young mentees. This book will forever be a part of my writer’s toolkit, because if I start from this perspective in every book I write, I don’t see how I’m going to lose.

Sacha takes us step-by-step through the careful crafting of a fully-fleshed three-dimensional villain, exposing our lopsided love affair with our hero/protagonist, and even providing us with a list of the different kinds of villains and what choosing one of them means for how your ending plays out. Sacha is mostly talking about the Bad Guys and how they relate to the story overall, but her advice, if followed, will make for some well-structured story and character arcs. As previously stated, I read a lot of writer books written for writers, and this one is easily one of the most indispensible for me going forward. I am very serious about purchasing two copies of this book.

I’ll be on the lookout for anything else that has Sacha’s name on it.

Buy  the books separately or combined: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Sacha-Black/e/B072BQ2MP7

and Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Sacha-Black/e/B072BQ2MP7

And find more reviews and follow Sacha on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16173650.Sacha_Black

Connect to Sacha via her website: https://www.sachablack.co.uk/

The next author with a new release is Marcia Meara with The Emissary – A Riverbend Spinoff Novella which follows the story of a previous character in the series.

About The Emissary

Was Gabe Angelino, the mysterious truck driver in Finding Hunter: Riverbend Book 2, really an angel, as Willow Green believes? Or was he simply a good man, determined to help a stranger in need? Find out, as author Marcia Meara reveals the truth in the first Riverbend spinoff novella, The Emissary.

An angel’s work is never done—that’s part of the gig. But angels hadn’t been created to deal with such a vastly over-populated planet, rife with misery, suffering, and general chaos. Helping souls in peril has become a nearly impossible job, and even angelic tempers are frayed.

The archangel Azrael has had enough. He believes he’s found a way to ease their burden while saving jeopardized humans, too—hired help.

When Jake Daughtry lost his life rescuing a total stranger from certain death, he was on the fast track to Heaven. But that was before Azrael pulled him right out of line at the Pearly Gates. Now, as an Emissary to the Angels, Jake is taking to the highway in a quest to help souls in trouble. But the innate stubbornness of human beings bent on self-destruction is a challenge unlike any he’s ever faced.

It’s up to Jake and Azrael to bridge the gap between humans and angels. Will they ever convince the Council of Angels this endeavor is worthwhile? Can Jake figure out how to play by Azrael’s complicated rules? Will Azrael ever master the use of contractions in general conversation?

To find out the answers, hop on board Jake’s big red-and-white semi and travel the roads from the Florida Keys to north Georgia on an adventure that will make you laugh hard and cry even harder.

Some early reviews for The Emissary.

I want more  on October 2, 2017

I am a Beta reader for Marcia and so have been privileged to reading this as the story evolved. This opinion is mine–this novella is wonderful. It takes a prior character from her books and expands on him. There are lots of twists, turns and emotions throughout and an absolutely lovely read. You will absolutely enjoy this novella.

An incredible read! Marcia has a way of description that simply takes your breath away. I have read many of her books but there is something about this story that is so beautiful and so real. I laughed and I cried and I love when a story had an erray of emotions. I truly enjoyed this read and highly recommend it.

Head over and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Emissary-Riverbend-Spinoff-Novella-ebook/dp/B075Y2T3CL

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Emissary-Riverbend-Spinoff-Novella-ebook/dp/B075Y2T3C

A selection of books by Marcia Meara

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

And Amazon UK : https://www.amazon.co.uk/Marcia-Meara/e/B00EUCXRU4

Follow Marcia Meara on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7242441.Marcia_Meara

Connect to Marcia via her website: http://marciamearawrites.com/

And for the final update today a recent review for M.J. Mallon for her book The Curse of Time: Book One – Bloodstone is a YA fantasy and science fiction adventure, which is on pre-order with delivery for August 26th.

About The Curse of Time

On Amelina Scott’s thirteenth birthday, her father disappears under mysterious circumstances. Saddened by this traumatic event, she pieces together details of a curse that has stricken the heart and soul of her family.

Amelina longs for someone to confide in. Her once carefree mother has become angry and despondent. One day a strange black cat and a young girl, named Esme appear. Immediately, Esme becomes the sister Amelina never had. The only catch is that Esme must remain a prisoner, living within the mirrors of Amelina’s house.

Dreams and a puzzling invitation convince Amelina the answer to her family’s troubles lies within the walls of the illusive Crystal Cottage. Undaunted by her mother’s warnings, Amelina searches for the cottage on an isolated Cambridgeshire pathway where she encounters a charismatic young man, named Ryder. At the right moment, he steps out of the shadows, rescuing her from the unwanted attention of two male troublemakers.

With the help of an enchanted paint set, Amelina meets the eccentric owner of the cottage, Leanne, who instructs her in the art of crystal magic. In time, she earns the right to use three wizard stones. The first awakens her spirit to discover a time of legends, and later, leads her to the Bloodstone, the supreme cleansing crystal which has the power to restore the balance of time. Will Amelina find the power to set her family free?

A YA/middle grade fantasy set in Cambridge, England exploring various themes/aspects: Light, darkness, time, shadows, a curse, magic, deception, crystals, art, poetry, friendships, teen relationships, eating disorders, self-harm, anxiety, depression, family, puzzles, mystery, a black cat, music, a mix of sadness, counterbalanced by a touch of humour.

One of the recent reviews for the book on Goodreads

Adele Marie Marie rated it Five Stars on October 12th 2017

From the beginning, I was drawn into the main character, Amelina’s world. It is quickly established that Amelina’s world is not like other girls her age. I can’t say more than that as I don’t want to give spoilers away.

Amelina is written so well. There is a part of her that all of us will recognise and emphasise with. At that awkward age where nothing fits and at the same time you feel as if you can conquer the world.

Darkness creeps in slowly in the form of Ryder who at first seems the answer to all Amelina desires, or is he? The circle of friends she has are all different personalities but they fit together like a circle. The description of each girl is short but gives us an immediate picture of their personality. Then there are Amelina’s parents, her growing power and the strange invitation.

I give Curse of Time Book One five stars.

I enjoyed reading this novel and the only consolation I had when finishing it was there will be a book two. Marjorie has written a magical tale and drawn for us a world where nothing is what it appears to be on the surface. I loved this novel and Marjorie’s telling of it. Amelina has a strong voice and I could see everything crystal clear through her eyes.

A book to go back and read time and time again.

Read the other reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B074CDJPY9

And on Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/M-J-Mallon/e/B074CGNK4L

Follow M.J. Mallon on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17064826.M_J_Mallon

Connect to Marjorie Mallon via her website: https://mjmallon.com/

Thank you for dropping in and if you have news to share about your books in the cafe and bookstore please let me know.. sally.cronin@moyhill.com  thanks.