Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – New Book for Christmas – 20 Things I’ve Learned from My Patients/ 20 cosas que he aprendido de mis pacientes. English-Spanish: A Psychiatrist’s Pearls of Wisdom to Help You Thrive. Consejos de una psiquiatra. Bilingual

Delighted to share the new book by Olga Nunez Miret, just released this week. Olga has not only been a wonderful supporter of this blog since I began four years ago, but has become a wonderful friend. Recently Olga translated Tales from the Garden into Spanish and it will be released shortly (FHB) Family Hold Back and when David has time between customers he works on mine.

However, I can highly recommend Olga’s services as a translator for you own books.

Anyway here is Olga’s latest release in a dual language format; English and Spanish.

20 Things I’ve Learned from My Patients/ 20 cosas que he aprendido de mis pacientes. English-Spanish: A Psychiatrist’s Pearls of Wisdom to Help You Thrive. Consejos de una psiquiatra. Bilingual

Bilingual edition (English-Spanish). Edición versión bilingüe (inglés-español)
Over the years that I have worked as a psychiatrist, writer, and blogger, I’ve collected common-sense advice and thoughts that I have passed on and shared with many (patients, friends, and readers). As people don’t have much time to read and enjoy images and quotes, I decided to publish twenty of the things I have learned over the years, illustrating each one of them with a picture and a quote. And as I know many people who want to improve their Spanish but don’t dare to take on a long book, I decided to publish it as a bilingual edition, English-Spanish. I don’t claim to have found the meaning of life, but I hope you enjoy this little book.

Durante mis años como psiquiatra, escritora y bloguera, he acumulado consejos y reflexiones de sentido común que he compartido con mucha gente, incluyendo pacientes, amigos y lectores. Como sé que la gente no tiene mucho tiempo para leer hoy en día, y les gusta compartir imágenes y citas, decidí publicar veinte de las cosas que he aprendido durante mi carrera, ilustrando cada una de ellas con una imagen y una cita. Conozco a muchas personas que quieren mejorar su inglés pero no se atreven a enfrentarse a un libro largo, así que decidí publicarlo en versión bilingüe, en inglés y español. No pretendo haber descubierto el sentido de la vida, pero espero que disfrutéis de este librito.

Buy the book:

and on Amazon US:

A selection of other books in Spanish or English by Olga Nunez Miret

Read the reviews and buy the books Amazon

And on Amazon UK:úñez-Miret/e/B009UC58G0

Read more reviews and follow Olga on Goodreads

Audio books

About Olga Nunez Miret

Olga Núñez Miret is a doctor, a psychiatrist, a student (of American Literature, with a Doctorate and all to prove the point, of Criminology, and of books and people in general), she writes, translates (English-Spanish and vice-versa) and although born in Barcelona, Spain, has lived in the UK for many years. She’s always loved books and is thrilled at the prospect of helping good stories reach more readers all around the world. She publishes a bilingual blog ( ) where she shares book reviews, advice, talks about books (hers and others) and about things she discovers and enjoys.

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

Connect to Olga 

Website –
Facebook –

Thanks for dropping in and it would be great if you could spread the news of Olga’s new book far and wide.. Thanks Sally


Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Christmas Book Fair – Jacquie Biggar, Stevie Turner and Olga Nunez Miret

Welcome to the second Christmas book fair today and the first author who has a book that would delight any reader at this time of year is USA Today bestselling author of Romantic Suspense Jacquie Biggar with Silver Bells.

About Silver Bells

Will a Christmas wish give a lonely author a family? A heartwarming, passionate story of true love.

Mystery writer, Joel Carpenter, has no time for romance. He has a deadline to meet, and too many skeletons in his closet to trust the slightly spinny artist renting his house.

Christy Taylor has her hands full dealing with an ailing business and a diabetic daughter, she doesn’t need the temptation that is her landlord, Joel Carpenter.

Can a Christmas wish bring two stubborn souls together and give a little girl the gift she wants most? A delightful mixture of women’s fiction, chick-lit, and romantic comedy, Silver Bells has something for every reader.

One of the excellent reviews for the book

SILVER BELLS: A Holiday Romance by Jacquie Biggar is a holiday novella that was sweet and easily read in one sitting curled up on the couch while the weather outside is frightful.
Joel Campbell, award winning mystery writer, has moved from Scotland to Vancover Island. He wants to be closer to his grandmother and hopes the change will get him over his writers’ block. Hating his fame, he has walled off his heart, become gruff and hates anyone interrupting him and yet, he is lonely.

Christy Taylor is an artist who has started her own shop attached to her rented home. Her life cannot be more hectic. She is attempting to grow her clientele, while caring for her small daughter, Jill, who has been diagnosed with Type 1, Juvenile diabetes. Christy is a great mother, but her divorce and her exes attitude toward their daughter has made her distrustful of any help from any man.

These two need to open up their hearts and learn to trust again before it is too late.
This novella is an enjoyable and quick read. I loved the characters in this short read, but being short, I felt some of the character development was lost. Jill was adorable and her disease was handle extremely well. I also feel this novella was not really a Christmas story, just a winter setting. That said, still a good heartfelt novella for a cold winter day.

Read all the reviews and buy the book:

and Amazon UK:

A selection of of other books by Jacquie Biggar

Read all the reviews and buy the books:

And at Amazon UK:

Read more reviews and follow Jacquie Biggar on Goodreads:

Connect to Jacquie via her website:

The next author is Stevie Turner for her latest release Mind Games new on the shelves in October.

About Mind Games

Frances Andrews is sick of her husband Martin’s addiction to pornography, and has lost her trust in him. Martin views porn as a harmless pastime, but when Frances threatens to leave, he is distraught and begs her to go with him for marriage guidance therapy. Counsellor Rhona suggests they take a holiday in the first instance, and start talking to one another again. Frances just wants out of the marriage, but finally agrees to go on a cruise…as long as they have separate cabins.

Told from both Frances and Martin’s perspectives, Mind Games shines a light on the effect that an addiction to pornography can have on a previously happy marriage.

One of the early reviews for the book

What do you do when trust has been destroyed in a marriage? Frances and Martin have had a happy marriage, except that his pornography addiction and her obsession with catching him out have rendered them unable to trust one another. He still loves her, but she’s completely disgusted by him. Is there anyway to find common ground?

I won’t give away the ending, but I thought it was interesting how Stevie Turner resolved the main conflict of the novel.

Well-written, insightful. Turner doesn’t give in to the usual conventions of romance make-up literature. She writes real people undergoing a believable crisis. Although I haven’t known any couples struggling with porn addictions, I have heard similar stories in other 12-Step groups. After a partner has deeply damaged the relationship, that partner stepping onto a better path doesn’t erase the hurt their spouse feels. You can only try to find a compromise where love remains.

Lest you think this story is a real downer, it’s not. There are some truly hilarious lines in this book. You definitely get the sense that Martin loves Frances and, if she weren’t so mad at him for repeating the same unfaithfulness over and over, she’d love him too.

I would definitely read more of Turner’s books.

Read the reviews and buy the book:

And Amazon UK:

A selection of books by Stevie Turner

Read all the reviews and buy the books:

And Amazon UK:

Follow Stevie Turner on Goodreads:

Connect to Stevie via her website:

Delighted to feature Olga Nunez Miret with her books. Olga has been working with me in the role of translator this year and the Spanish version of Tales from the Garden should be available by Christmas.. I cannot recommend Olga enough in this capacity and as a very supportive and generous blogging friend.  I have selected I Love Your Cupcakes to feature since everyone loves cupcakes at this time of year.. and I love the cover.

About I Love Your Cupcakes

Dulce, Adelfa and Storm, the protagonists of I Love Your Cupcakes are business partners, friends and share some “interesting” family connections. All the men Dulce meets only want to talk about her cakes and she’s tired of it. Her friend Adelfa, although she’s a Chemistry Professor, can’t manage to find the recipe for the perfect relationship. And Storm, the third of the partners of their bakery/coffee shop/bookshop/art gallery and ex-fire station, is an artist who is not a master in the art of love. How could they imagine that at the studio of the contest “Do You Have What it Takes to Be the Next Baking Star?” they’d find sexual harassment, cheats, fights and also love? Recipes included (only for cakes, not love!)

One of the reviews for the book

What a fun book this was! Starting with a colorful, tantalizing cover, Ms. Núñez Miret’s story immediately drew me in. In it, Dulce and Adelfa are best friends and, coincidentally, half sisters (It’s complicated!). Dulce has dabbled in one profession after another; Adelfa has had trouble with men. Together they finally get their acts together by starting a cupcake and cake business, proving the age-old adage, “when things are meant to be” they just happen lickety-split.

Using an old, 1878 abandoned firehouse, they develop a community-based, fun-filled bakery, where books are offered to the public as well as good cheer. All is going swimmingly when they are invited to participate in a televised Hollywood bake off. The reader is then treated to the inner workings of shows such as this––some of it wonderful, some of it not so good. As the contestants get to know one another, romance blossoms for our heroines, bringing happiness full circle for all. If you want to read a highly entertaining, feel-good book, I definitely recommend this one!

Read the reviews and buy the book:úñez-Miret-ebook/dp/B00NZ73WBO

And on Amazon US:úñez-Miret-ebook/dp/B00NZ73WBO

A selection of other books in Spanish or English by Olga Nunez Miret

Read the reviews and buy the books Amazon

And on Amazon UK:úñez-Miret/e/B009UC58G0

Read more reviews and follow Olga on Goodreads –

Audio books

Connect to Olga via her website:

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope it has given you some ideas for books as gifts for friends and family as well as for yourself. Thanks Sally

Smorgasbord Reblog – Odd Jobs and Characters – Cut Glass Crystal and Sherlock Holmes hosted by Olga Nunez Miret

Delighted to have been the guest of Olga Nunez Miret this week with the final story in the Odd Jobs and Characters series. This week I am sales manager for a cut glass crystal company transporting these fragile pieces around the country in 1983. Shortly after I started by job, with a full load of crystal in the back of my estate car, I tangled with a very large articulated lorry.. On the bright side I got to meet Sherlock Holmes.

Odd Jobs and Characters – Car Crash and Crystal and meeting Sherlock Holmes by Sally Cronin

After I left the department store in the middle of Liverpool, I was appointed manager of a crystal and gift shop in Lord Street, Southport, which is where we had bought our first home.

It was at the north end of this mile long main street, and we sold high end gift items such as Moorcroft pottery, and our own cut glass crystal glassware from the factory in the Lake District. All the glass was classified as ‘seconds’, even though there would only perhaps be a small bubble in the glass, or the cut might not be completely standard. However, the prices were terrific, with at least 40% of the normal retail price. I still have some of the glasses that I bought 34 years ago, and I was lucky enough to get another 10% discount making them very affordable.

Going to work was very easy. I walked out of our gate, then a brisk five minutes down the road, and unlocked the shop door. I really enjoyed the next 18 months, but was then offered the opportunity to manage the three shops that had now been opened, with the other two being in York and Norwich. I would also spend time in the Lake District as marketing manager to oversee the running of the factory shop, and to develop a tour around the glassworks for visitors. This meant that I was away most of the week in one capacity or another, and I was given a large estate car to carry stock between the various shops.

On one occasion I had brought down a consignment of crystal to the Southport shop, picking up David from home, with the intention of delivering stock to the York shop and then spending the weekend exploring that very old and lovely city. We had set off down the motorway, which was busy with a Friday getaway, and because there was a great deal of commercial traffic, I was in the centre lane doing a steady 60 miles an hour and overtaking the trucks, and I was just in the process of passing a large articulated lorry, when it suddenly veered out into the middle lane without signalling, and hit my car.

I was being pushed out into the fast lane, where traffic was moving considerably faster and there was nowhere for me to go but forward. I hit the accelerator and managed to disconnect from cab of the truck and pull in front of it; then on to the hard shoulder, where I came to rest in a state of shock. It was only then that the driver realised what he had done, and he too pulled onto the shoulder behind me. Thankfully David was not hurt despite the passenger side door being badly damaged, and once I established that, I was out of the car and heading back to the lorry where the driver was hanging onto his wheel, waiting equally white-faced for one very angry woman charging up the hard shoulder towards him.

It was probably just as well the police arrived shortly afterwards to make sure none of us needed treatment or that other road users were impacted. David by this time had managed to open his passenger door and join the discussion.

Please head over to Olga’s blog to read the rest of the episode where I meet Sherlock Holmes:

 ©SallyCronin 2016

About Olga Nunez Miret

Olga Núñez Miret is a doctor, a psychiatrist, a student (of American Literature, with a Doctorate and all to prove the point, of Criminology, and of books and people in general), she writes, translates (English-Spanish and vice-versa) and although born in Barcelona, Spain, has lived in the UK for many years. She’s always loved books and is thrilled at the prospect of helping good stories reach more readers all around the world. She publishes a bilingual blog ( ) where she shares book reviews, advice, talks about books (hers and others) and about things she discovers and enjoys.

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

Books in Spanish or English by Olga Nunez Miret

A review for Escaping Psychiatry 2: The Case of the Swapped Bodies.

A Jolly Good Read on March 22, 2017

As a doctor and a psychiatrist, the author knows well the workings of the human mind, and she brings this knowledge to the table in ‘The Case of the Swapped Bodies’.
When consulting psychiatrist Mary Miller receives an unusual document from an FBI contact, it sets in chain a puzzling series of events. As with all mystery novels, it is difficult to give a flavour of the story without spoilers. Suffice to say this is a complex, carefully structured tale involving an unusual murder, FBI-police rivalry, buried secrets, small-town gossip and innuendo, an on-off love affair, and a character who may be insane – or worse.

Olga Nunez Miret steers a careful line around the different narrative threads, and strews just enough red herrings in your path to keep you weaving back and forth between possible ‘solutions’ until the book’s closing stages. Logic and emotion interweave to keep the reader off-balance and anxious to see how resolution(s) will be achieved. You may never view American small-town life in quite the same way again.A jolly good read.

Read the reviews and buy the books Amazon

And on Amazon UK:úñez-Miret/e/B009UC58G0

Read more reviews and follow Olga on Goodreads

Audio books

Social Media

Website –
Facebook –

Smorgasbord End of Summer Party – One last fling with Fantastic Writers, Music and more FREE books from Susan Toy.

For some of you it is the last bank holiday of the summer and this is the last post in this three day festival. Yesterday my guests included D.G. Kaye, Tina Frisco, Janice Spina, Marjorie Mallon, Teagan Geneviene, The Story Reading Ape, Ali Isaac,Tess Karlinski and Brigid Gallagher.

Here is the link to the previous two days of posts

And I filmed the proceedings yesterday and lovely to see so many up there on the dance floor.. thanks Nerd Fest UK for their speedy editing services

To start off us today is a request from Judith Barrow for a track from The Travelling Wilbury’s from their official Youtube channel… Judith has been a wonderful friend and motivator for both my blog and books and as the organiser of the  Narbeth Book Festival she is taking that support to a new level.

Head off and check out all of Judith’s fantastic books and reviews here:

Time to get up and tap your feet to this catchy number from the Traveling Wilburys

Buy The Travelling Wilbury’s Music:

I have more headliners for you today, but first a reminder of the FREE book offer and how you can mingle in the comments section with other guests.

My novel Just an Odd Job Girl is available in eBook – Mobi for Kindle and epub for all other devices. You just have to email and tell me which version –

I would love you to participate and if you have not already taken this short quiz and left your answers and links in the comments then now is your chance.

My experience with most of you reading this, is that you are very modest, and have trouble blowing your own trumpet. So to help you with that, here is a short quiz with one word answers to put in the comments alongside your links. The answers I receive may be used against you in the posts on Monday


  • Which is your favourite recording artist or band
  • Pizza or Pasta
  • Favourite Film
  • Person you would most like to meet Dead or Alive.

Then please leave your blog or website, Amazon, Facebook and Twitter Links.

Here is the link to yesterday’s party post:

Recently I have been delighted to welcome two new lifestyle guest writers.

Carol Taylor is my co-conspirator on this project. Most of you are familiar with my Medicine Woman’s larder and Carol and I have teamed up to provide you with recipes to make the most of these amazing foods. I am providing the ingredients and sharing their nutritional and medicinal properties and Carol is taking them to a whole new level with her delicious recipes.

Carol began this party wearing her dancing shoes and wanted to share them with us.

Carol lives in Thailand and enjoys sharing authentic Thai recipes made with the wonderfully fresh local ingredients she sources in the markets.  You can find these and so much more on her blog: and you can connect on Twitter:

You can find our posts in the new series – Cook From Scratch with Sally and Carol.

Carol has requested something by Sir Rod Stewart and I have selected something from my misspent youth when we pranced around to this thinking we were the bees knees. Buy Sir Rod’s music:

I expect after dancing around to Sir Rod  that you might be a little peckish so it is just as well that Carol has sent over some of her delicious party food.

And after dancing since yesterday, Carol has now changed into some more comfortable shoes and is hitting the margeritas….

Before we meet Julie Lawford it is time for some more music and this was requested by Jennie Fitzkee who loves The Beatles.

Jenny has a wonderful blog where she shares stories of her 30 years as a preschool teacher. I do recommend that you head over and read her posts because you too will come away with a renewed love of books and readings. Something that she has instilled in these young pupils who adore her. Here is the link to her latest post:

I have chosen this Beatles track for Jennie today which happens to be one of my favourites.

Now it is time to meet Julie Lawford who has been contributing some great posts on weight loss and lifestyle for the summer.

Julie and I met at the Blogger’s Bash in June and we discovered a connection through our weight loss journeys and our love of a healthier lifestyle.. I asked for access to your archives and have been sharing her very informative and helpful posts for the last few weeks.

Always engaged with the written word, Julie Lawford came to fiction late in the day. Following a career in technology marketing she has been freelance since 2002 and has written copy for just about every kind of business collateral you can imagine. By 2010, she was on the hunt for a new writing challenge and Singled Out – her debut psychological suspense novel – is the result.

Julie is based in London in the UK. Whilst penning her second novel, she still writes – and blogs – for marketing clients.

Read the reviews and buy the book here:

You can find all of Julie’s posts here on Smorgasbord in this file:

There has been some amazing food contributed to the party and I have to share this dish in particular that Noelle Granger has provided. It is one of those dishes that is always one of the most expensive on the menus in the UK and Ireland but it is the most delicious. Just look at this Lobster Thermidor.. Noelle has been most generous with the portions so forks at the ready.

Noelle is another author of the Rhe Brewster Mystery Series and she has been a treasured participant in the last four years of blogging. I was delighted to meet her in person for a huge hug (several actually) at the Blogger’s Bash along with her delightful husband.

You can read the reviews and buy the books:

Time for some music and some dancing to work off the Lobster before dessert.

Mary Smith have been connected here since the beginning but we only met face to face a the Blogger’s Bash in June.. and she was everything that I expected and it was lovely to meet her face to face.

Here are her books and the link to check them out and buy of course:

Mary has requested something by Queen and I hope she likes the track I have selected. Should be an Indie author’s anthem…Buy Queen’s music:

Most of you will know Susan Toy and how must time and effort she puts into her promotion of authors and I am very lucky to have featured several times in her Reading Recommendations.

Susan has written some wonderful books that I have read and reviewed and she has brought a very special dessert to the party and an offer for three lucky readers to win a copy of one of her books.

You can check the Bequia books out on Amazon;

A Bequia Lime Pie, and I hope it helps you to further celebrate this great Smorgasbord End of Summer Party you’ve been hosting all weekend, Sally!

I have felt so privileged to have been promoted many times on this blog, and have in turn hosted Sally Cronin and her books on my own blog, Reading Recommendations, where she is one of my All-Star Authors!

Aside from providing the pie (Keep your fork, Prince! – an old Western Canadian joke …), I am also offering a giveaway of all three of my publications (in mobi, ePub or PDF editions).

To enter, all you need do is head over to my blog where I will have reblogged this very post of Sally’s, and comment there, telling me which book you would like to read.

And here is Susan’s music choice which is appropriate for most of us here today. Paperback Writer.

Buy The Beatles Music:

I will select three lucky winners from those comments – one for each title on September 1st.


I will never in this world be able to feature all those that kept me motivated those first few months of blogging but here are one or two more that I would like to say a special thank you to.

Olga Núñez Miret Author/Translator Autora/Traductora began following me in May 2014 and has been a source of wonderful information, book reviews and is now working with me as she translates my book Tales from the Garden into Spanish.

Olga trained in Medicine in Barcelona, Spain, and came to the UK in 1992 (shortly after the Olympics) with the plan of training in psychiatry. She spent quite a few years working in psychiatry (most recently forensic psychiatry), but on the way she studied a few other things (American Literature, Criminology). Early in 2014 she left psychiatry as a full time occupation to explore other avenues, carry on writing and also translate other authors’ books.

In her blog she post about things that interest jer, random thoughts, advice, book reviews, with guests, both alive and classics…

Olga is a prolific author with most of her books available in both English and Spanish and with several in audio.

Here is a selection and you can find all the books, read the reviews and buy t:

Olga has two of her books as FREE downloads and you will find the links to download:








And another that I would like to mention is the lovely Kim Gosselin who has been absent from blogging for a couple of months but who was hugely supportive from the early days onwards.

Kim Gosselin is the oldest of five children, born and raised in the small town of Bay City, Michigan, near the murky blue waters of a bay. She fell in love with reading as a young girl, spending hours in a historic three story library painted in cream.

A multi-award winning author, Kim has written 17 children’s books including Babies of Two, the first in a series for children, mothers and families to share. She is a member of The Author’s Guild and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. Find out more at Kim’s Blog:

Here is a small selection of Kim’s books which you can find at this link:

Someone who sends Angel messages and inspiring Haikus our way on a daily basis is Annette Rochelle Aben who has the most infectious smile I have ever seen. Annette pays daily visits to many of us and generously shares on her social media and also by interviewing authors on her radio podcast The Magic Happens.

Most of my life, like since I have been old enough to hold a writing implement, I have loved writing. Other than school assignments, I chose poetry as my favorite way of expressing myself.

A selection of Annette’s books that you can find at:

Fast forward to and through my adulthood, I have done a lot of writing for work in radio, television and newspapers. In addition to writing, I am completely in love with Angels, cooking, making jewelry, photography, cats, listening to music and laughing! Perhaps we have something in common, if so, leave me a comment and let’s connect.
With Love & Gratitude :

I could go on and on featuring the wonderful bloggers who have extended the hand of friendship over the last four years but there is simply not enough time.. And you can bet that I would have missed out one or two of your names in this world…

And time for some music – Annette and Steve Costello both mentioned that they enjoyed Dire Straits so I have selected this track that I hope they and you will enjoy..Details of Steve’s book after the music.

Sultans of Swing:

Steve Costello is the author of the recently published Beyond the Pyre:

About the book

When Catharine and Ben go to their French home in Carcassonne, they meet a woman who looks just like Catharine, with whom she shares an instant affinity. Catharine’s spirit guide, Michael, connects her to ancient Carcassonne and the spirit of Elionor, whose thirteenth-century life entwines with Catharine’s modern one.

Ben is concerned, but a journey of his own leads him to realise that not only Elionor’s and Catharine’s lives are interlinked, but his own and those of a whole group of people they know in the present world.

A terrifying encounter with two false friends from the past – centuries past – and meetings with their age-old selves pull Ben and Catharine into the ancient crusades against the Cathar faith, to unearth a long-hidden secret. Can they defeat the evil twins, Les Deux, rewrite history and save their present, or will history repeat itself, 800 years in the future?

Find out more about Steve and his books and buy :

I am afraid that there is simply not enough time or space to mention everyone who has been with me for the last four years. However, you all mean the world to me and I would not be so inspired to keep on writing without you.  Thank you a million times over and I hope I have not left anyone out.

Thank you so much to everyone who has dropping in over the last three days. There have been so many music requests that I will be putting a couple of posts together later in the week to feature as many as possible along with your links.

To finish off the show today another one of my favourites and sums up how I feel after three days of partying with you.. I think it says it all.  Join the rest of these guys by getting up and clapping along..

Smorgasbord Blogger Daily – Wednesday 23rd August – Charli Mills/M.J.Mallon, Angie Dokos, Olga Nunez Miret, Story Reading Ape/Andrew Joyce

Smorgasbord Blogger Daily

Welcome to my selection of posts from around the community over the last couple of days.. small selection but I hope you will pop over and check the complete posts and leave your comments etc.

The first is a guest post by M.J. Mallon who is celebrating the publication of her debut novel with Charli Mills of Carrot Ranch.  Here is The Curse of Time – Book 1 – Bloodstone

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.

Head over and check out the post and discover more about the book:

Smorgasbord Blogger Daily

I have been working back through blogs this last couple of days as I have been not as diligent as normal.. a few things on my plate.. I popped into Angie Dokos for a browse and this post from last week caught my attention. As it will I am sure if you go over to read it. Angie does not know who the author is but that is not important as it is the message that is so essential.

It was a chilly Friday afternoon. To be precise, the date was February 17. Our high school baseball team was finishing the first week of practice. Though the sun was brightly shining, the temperature hovered around a very breezy 35 degrees. Our coach, a former minor league baseball player, was a strict taskmaster who seemed to believe the most important skill required for this sport was an ability to run long distances. Many on our squad were confused and wondered if we were actually training for the cross country team.

Each day during this week, we were required to run from the locker room of the high school to the parking lot of the middle school. Once there, our coach could be found waiting for us as he leaned against his red Ford pickup. Coach said nothing. He simply extended his index finger and pointed in the direction from which we had arrived. Every day, we ran nearly six miles from the high school to the middle school and back again. With pained expressions, we made our way through the first week of baseball practice having never thrown, caught or hit a baseball.

Please head over and read this story.. it is important:

Next post I would like to share is a book review by Olga Nunez Miret for those of you who are into gothic or horror genres. Here is the blurb for the book and then I suggest that you head over to Olga’s to enjoy one of her reviews which are always a great read. Painted by Kirsten McKenzie

About PAINTED: A Horror Novel by Kirsten McKenzie

If art can capture a soul, what happens when one of those souls escapes?

When art appraiser Anita Cassatt is sent to catalogue the extensive collection of reclusive artist Leo Kubin, it isn’t the chilly atmosphere of the secluded house making her shiver, it’s the silent audience of portraits clustered on every wall watching her.

Kubin’s lawyer didn’t share the detailed instructions regarding the handling of the art, and Anita and her team start work in ignorance of the very instructions designed to keep them safe. Safe from the art.

In the dark, a portrait stirs as the subject eases themselves out of the portrait and stretches, free at last from the confines of a canvas which they have no intention of ever returning to. They have a painting to finish and the people in the house will only be in the way…

Buy Painted now and you’ll never look at the art on your walls the same way again.

Perfect for lovers of early Stephen King and Rachel Caine

Head over and enjoy Olga’s review of Painted:

And definitely last but not least is the esteemed Mr. Andrew Joyce who is sharing his hard-earned experience in writing and publishing books. Well worth reading even if you already have a few books under your belt. Andrew is a guest of The Story Reading Ape who is no slouch when it comes to book promotion.

My name is Andrew Joyce, and to my many fans—both of ’em—I want to say hello. To the rest of you good folks, I’d like to introduce myself.

I’m a writer of little renown. Now, as the title of this piece suggests, who am I to give advice? A very good question, one I’ve obviously asked myself. I have four books out and the fifth should be with us any day now. I have gone through what you are all going through. I’ve sat at my damn computer day after day trying to put into words the sensational story swirling around in my head. When I finally had my story on paper—and more or less coherent—I had to start with the editing. Then, to add insult to injury, once the book was published, I had to demean myself to market it. Well, maybe demean is not the right word, but I do so hate to beg. I only mention my time in the trenches so you’ll know that I’m a veteran and have the wounds to prove it.

I’m here today to relate the little of what I’ve learned over the last four years concerning writing. Some of it will be old hat to some of you. And to you brand-new writers looking for a signpost or two to help you find your way, I sincerely hope what I’m about to convey helps.

I suggest that you head over and absorb some of the wisdom of Andrew Joyce:

Thanks for dropping in today and I hope you head over and enjoy the rest of the posts. Sally

Cuentos de Smorgasbord – Diana de Sally Cronin – Traducción de Olga Nunez Miret

I have been considering having some of my books translated into Spanish for some time and luckily the supportive Olga Nunez Miret is an excellent person to take on the job in her role as professional translator. This story is from What’s in a Name and if all things go to plan it will be included in a Spanish anthology in aid of victims of Domestic Violence.

Olga will be working on Tales from the Garden in the near future and I look forward to sharing the book to those living in Spanish speaking countries.

Me disculpo por mi español

Espero que disfruten la historia de Diana

DIANA de Sally Cronin

Diana Grace era la única hija de unos padres mayores que se vieron sorprendidos muy agradablemente cuando descubrieron que después de quince años de casados un bebé estaba por fin de camino. Su padre era profesor de música y su madre psiquiatra y Diana había crecido en un hogar repleto de amor y risas.

No queriendo que su niña fuera la típica hija única, sus padres se aseguraron de que entendiera que los éxitos y el dinero solo se consiguen gracias al trabajo duro. Diana había empezado repartiendo periódicos de niña y de ahí pasó a trabajar en una panadería del barrio como aprendiz de vendedora mientras estudiaba en el instituto y luego en la universidad. A pesar de que la situación económica de sus padres era acomodada, insistieron en que contribuyera una parte de su paga para su mantenimiento y ella estaba orgullosa de darles esas pocas libras cada semana.

Ser una chica lista y extrovertida le abrió muchas puertas a Diana y, después de licenciarse en Filología inglesa, le ofrecieron un trabajo de asistente del director de una enorme librería en Oxford. Eso la llevó a mudarse de casa de sus padres a una casa compartida con tres chicas jóvenes que, como ella, empezaban sus vidas profesionales lejos de casa.

Los dos años siguientes pasaron rápidamente para Diana, mientras ella disfrutaba de su trabajo y también de una vida social ajetreada con el grupo de amigos íntimos que se había creado a su alrededor. Siguió yendo a visitar a sus padres por lo menos una vez al mes y ellos la vieron convertirse en una vibrante y bella mujer.

Un buen día Diana levantó la mirada del mostrador donde estaba comprobando una partida de libros nuevos y se encontró mirándole a la cara a un hombre muy atractivo. Alto, pelo oscuro que caía con gracia natural sobre su amplia frente, con unos labios gruesos y sonrientes, y un hoyuelo en su firme barbilla.

Se dio cuenta de que se lo había quedado mirando fijamente y recobró la compostura con rapidez.

—Buenos días, ¿puedo ayudarle en algo? —Diana colocó las manos delante de ella en el mostrador, de forma profesional, o al menos eso esperaba.

—Hola. Busco una copia de Grandes esperanzas para el cumpleaños de mi sobrino. ¿Tienen una edición reciente en stock?

Como si se hubiese dado cuenta de su turbación, el hombre inclinó la cabeza hacia un lado y la miró directamente a los ojos.

El romance que siguió podría describirse como un torbellino, ya que Diana se vio arrastrada por una pasión y una certeza que solo había conocido en los libros. En tan solo seis semanas lo llevó a su casa a conocer a sus padres y tres meses después se casaron en una iglesia que estaba a tan solo un corto paseo de la casa de sus padres. Se convirtió en la señora de Simon Forester y se pasó mucho tiempo repitiendo su nuevo nombre varias veces al día para que no se le olvidase su buena suerte.

Simon era banquero de inversiones y trabajaba en Londres. Ya tenía un piso en la zona de los Docklands y, después de la boda, Diana se trasladó allí con sus numerosas cajas de libros, su música y los regalos de boda. En un éxtasis de felicidad, y a pesar de tener que separarse de sus mejores amigos, se puso a buscar trabajo y encontró una librería en Holborn que necesitaba una encargada.

El torbellino no se detuvo ya que la vida social que el trabajo de Simon conllevaba era rápida y adictiva. Adoraba a su guapo marido y en secreto disfrutaba de las miradas que las otras mujeres les dirigían cuando entraban en una habitación. Si alguna queja tenía Diana, muy menor, era que sus padres nunca parecieron tomarle afecto a Simon. Cuando iban a visitarlos, un fin de semana o en alguna ocasión especial, siempre había tensiones que la preocupaban.

Fue justamente después de su tercer aniversario de bodas cuando apareció una grieta en su matrimonio. Diana pensó que su cena de celebración sería el momento más apropiado para contarle a Simon que iban a tener un bebé y que estaba embarazada de dos meses.

Él depositó su copa de vino, muy cuidadosamente, sobre el blanco mantel y posó sus fríos ojos sobre su cara, excitada y radiante.

—¿Cómo dejaste que pasara eso? —le escupió, mientras ella se quedaba boquiabierta ante su reacción.

Tiró la servilleta bruscamente sobre la mesa y llamó al camarero, exigiéndole la cuenta. Agarrándola del brazo con excesiva fuerza, la obligó a salir a marcha ligera del restaurante hacia su coche.

Un silencio gélido descendió sobre su matrimonio, con Simon trabajando muchas horas y negándose rotundamente a hablar del bebé. Al final, desesperada, Diana lo arrinconó en una ocasión en que llegó a altas horas de la mañana, claramente bebido, y le preguntó qué quería que hiciera.

Tras un momento de silencio, él se giró hacia ella y por un instante Diana entrevió el destello de su sonrisa de siempre, pero sin nada de su encanto.

Diana estaba tumbada sobre la cama y el dolor le irradiaba desde la pierna por todo el cuerpo hasta unirse a su pulsátil dolor de cabeza. Podía oír sollozos y alguien le estaba estrujando la mano que colgaba sin fuerzas a su costado. Cuando sus párpados se abrieron sintió como un aliento caliente subía por su brazo hasta su cuello y se acercaba a su oído.

—Si dices una sola palabra, me aseguraré de terminar el trabajo la próxima vez —. A ella la hizo estremecer la amenaza que se desprendía de su voz—. Te mareaste y te caíste escaleras abajo delante del piso, ¿te enteras, idiota de mierda?

Aterrorizada, Diana forcejeó, intentando liberar su brazo de su agarre y entonces sonó otra voz desde el pie de la cama.

—Es hora de que deje que su esposa descanse, Sr. Forrester y usted también tiene aspecto de necesitar dormir un poco— el tono decidido de la enfermera dejaba claro que eso no era una petición y Simon se levantó y le dio unas palmaditas en el brazo a Diana.

—Muy bien, querida. Nos vemos por la mañana —. Él se giró hacia la enfermera y le dedicó la mejor de sus sonrisas—. Cuide de ellos por mí, enfermera. Lo son todo para mí—. Con eso, pasó rozando junto a la enfermera y salió de la sala.

La enfermera se dirigió a la cabecera de la cama y apoyó una mano amable sobre el hombro de Diana.

—Tienes muchos morados y una conmoción pero por suerte caíste de lado. Tienes la barriga magullada, pero el bebé está bien y es muy fuerte, así que intenta no preocuparte—. Mientras seguía con sus comprobaciones, la enfermera miró a Diana a la cara, llena de moretones —. Sabes que si necesitas ayuda de cualquier tipo hay personas a las que podemos llamar —se quedó callada un segundo —. Has sufrido una caída muy desagradable y no sería bueno para ti o para tu bebé si eso volviese a pasar.

Colocó el botón de llamada en la mano de Diana y, satisfecha al haber hecho todo lo que podía, de momento, se dirigió al otro extremo de la sala para hablar con el médico. El analgésico le estaba empezando a hacer efecto, y aunque algo adormilada, Diana sabía que este era el momento para pensar y actuar con claridad. No era solo ella quien necesitaba protección sino también su niño por nacer. Nunca antes en su vida había sentido ira pero ahora se dio cuenta de que la opresión en su pecho y cabeza no eran tan solo resultado del empujón escaleras abajo que le había dado Simon delante de su piso. Era una necesidad profundamente arraigada e instintiva de proteger a su niño que aún no había nacido.

A la mañana siguiente, después de que los llamara por la noche la enfermera encargada de la sala, los padres de Diana estaban sentados al lado de su cama, cogiéndole las manos y hablando en voz baja. La puerta de la sala se abrió de golpe y Simon marchó dando zancadas por el suelo de mármol con un ramo de rosas rojas y dedicándoles sonrisas a las enfermeras al pasar. Miró hacia adelante y al ver a los padres de Diana la sonrisa se le congeló en los labios.

Al acercarse, notó que un hombre que había estado ligeramente oculto por las cortinas se dirigía al pie de la cama de Diana. Simon miró de refilón a su esposa, que estaba sentada apoyándose en la almohada, y se enfrentó a una frialdad y firmeza que no había visto nunca antes en la cara de su hasta entonces dócil mujer.

Oyó unos pasos que se acercaban resueltamente a su espalda y las rosas cayeron al suelo cuando le agarraron violentamente por los brazos y se los sujetaron por detrás.

Forcejeando con sus aprehensores se giró para confrontar al hombre de gesto serio frente a él.

—Simon Forester. Le arresto…

©SallyCronin 2016

Translated by Olga Nunez Miret

Olga Núñez Miret is a doctor, a psychiatrist, a student (of American Literature, with a Doctorate and all to prove the point, of Criminology, and of books and people in general), she writes, translates (English-Spanish and vice-versa) and although born in Barcelona, Spain, has lived in the UK for many years. She’s always loved books and is thrilled at the prospect of helping good stories reach more readers all around the world. She publishes a bilingual blog ( ) where she shares book reviews, advice, talks about books (hers and others) and about things she discovers and enjoys.

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

Books in Spanish or English by Olga Nunez Miret

To buy her books and to reach Olga through social media here are her links

Amazon –
Goodreads –

Audio books

Social Media

Website –
Facebook –

Gracias por tu visita. Espero que hayas disfrutado la historia.

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – Amy M. Reade, Olga Núñez Miret and Gigi Sedlemayer.


Welcome to Friday’s Cafe and Bookstore update and today three authors who are either celebrating a new release or terrific reviews. Amy M. Reade, Olga Núñez Miret  and Gigi Sedlemayer.


USA Today bestselling author of contemporary and gothic women’s fiction Amy Reade has just released The House on Candlewick Lane, the first book in the Malice series, which currently consists of three books. Each book has a different main character, but you’ll find some characters that drop in throughout the series (some more than others). The second book in the series is called Highland Peril and will be out in the fall. The third book, with a working title of Death Comes to Thistlecross, will be out next year.

About The House on Candlewick Lane

It is every parent’s worst nightmare. Greer Dobbins’ daughter has been kidnapped—and spirited across the Atlantic to a hiding place in Scotland. Greer will do anything to find her, but the streets of Edinburgh hide a thousand secrets—including some she’d rather not face. Art historian Dr. Greer Dobbins thought her ex-husband, Neill, had his gambling addiction under control. But in fact he was spiraling deeper and deeper into debt.

When a group of shady lenders threatens to harm the divorced couple’s five-year-old daughter if he doesn’t pay up, a desperate Neill abducts the girl and flees to his native Scotland. Though the trail seems cold, Greer refuses to give up and embarks on a frantic search through the medieval alleys of Edinburgh—a city as beguiling as it is dangerous. But as the nightmare thickens with cryptic messages and a mysterious attack, Greer herself will become a target, along with everyone she holds dear.

Two of the early reviews

Incredible book that captures you from the start! By Kathleen Charon on February 7, 2017

I am a huge fan of Ms. Reade’s books! I enjoy her narrative style and her descriptions pull me into the world that her characters inhabit. This book is every parent’s nightmare and chronicles Greer’s search for her missing daughter. I was so caught up in the story that I couldn’t put it down. Although I read an advanced copy, I had to purchase it because I enjoyed it so much. Don’t start until you have the time to read straight through! It will captivate you. I cannot wait for her next book!

A great read! By New York Army Mom on February 7, 2017

The House On Candlewick Lane by Amy M Reade. Set in Scotland, Amy gives her reader a great look at the language and food of Scotland. One of my favorite things about Amy’s writing is the way she describes everything; From the characters, to the setting, to the plot! The reader gets to go along for the ride with the characters, in the streets and even in the kitchen! In addition, every chapter ends with a comment that pushes you on to the next chapter! This is an author you will want to get to know! And you will definitely get to do so in this story! She weaves herself through the pages beautifully.

Don’t stop at the end, there’s a glossary defining the many Scottish terms and teasers for her other books! And if you want to get to know Amy better click the link to the latest news about Amy M. Reade. Very Interesting! I don’t want to give anything away, I will just say that I would like to see this house on Candlewick Lane! And the cover… beautiful!

Read all the reviews and buy the book

Also by Amy M. Reade

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Read all the reviews and buy the books:


Connect to Amy via her website:


Olga Nunez Miret has received a wonderful review from Christoph Fischer for her latest book Escaping Psychiatry 2. The Case of the Swapped Bodies.

51-yoxohzql-_uy250_About Escaping Psychiatry 2. The Case of the Swapped Bodies

A woman shot dead. No enemies, no motive, only a story about how she swapped bodies with another woman found on her computer. The other woman in the story, the owner of the swapped body, goes into labour and won’t talk.

When FBI Agent Dave Dean asks psychiatrist/writer Mary Miller for her assistance, she doesn’t know that The Case of the Swapped Bodies is not the only mystery in Port Haven. A hit and run, an armed robbery gone wrong and questions about family traditions, priorities and legacies come into play and complicate matters. The line between fact and fiction is more tenuous than anybody realised and suspense is on the menu.

This is the third book in the Escaping Psychiatry series and it poses new challenges for Mary Miller. And not all the challenges are professional ones. How do you carry on when you’ve survived the unthinkable?

The review from Christoph Fischer for the book

“Escaping Psychiatry 2. The Case of the Swapped Bodies” by Olga Núñez Miret was a real treat and almost a surprise. I like Olga’s sharp and psychologically charged writing the best and knew this would be good.I was not prepared, however, for the extremely clever plot.

At first there is the confusion of a woman waking up in a different body and in a different life. Then she establishes contact with the woman currently in her own body. That in itself is a great premise and the conversation between the trapped women would have been more than enough for one successful book.

Olga doesn’t stop there but now introduces more complexity as the case is being handled by both, the police, and our series heroine, psychiatrist Mary.Despite a heavy workload I couldn’t resist the book and kept reading at every opportunity to get to the bottom of this psychological thriller. My curiosity got the better of me and all I can say is that the denouement doesn’t let you down.

A clever idea, perfectly executed with sharp writing, excellent characters and a lot going for it.  Maybe the author’s best so far. Highly recommended.

Buy the book:

A selection of books by Olga Núñez Miret 

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Discover all the books,read the reviews and buy:úñez-Miret/e/B009UC58G0

Olga Nuñez Miret-amazon-author-The Writer Next Door

Connect to Olga via her website:


Gigi Sedlmayer has received a new review for Come Fly with Me the first book in the Talon Series from Akrum Menacker.

51jo3ypdlbl-_uy250_About Come Fly with Me.

Talon, come fly with me is a delightful middle grade story set in Peru with a family of condors and missionary Australians.

Is it possible for condors to understand humans?

Suspend your beliefs and watch how an under-size girl, Matica, finds friends with a family of condors, after being rejected by the Indians because of her size.

There are beautiful descriptions of the flight of the condors, and more so when Talon is cared for by Matica. The language suits this age group and does not talk down to the reader.

This is a great inspirational story for everyone. It will lift you up and make you believe in adventures, friendships, acceptance in a whole new light.

Come and take the journey that is called Matica’s life. It is filled with rejections, heartbreaks, growth and loneliness, but through it all, it will make you feel stronger.
Talon, Come Fly With Me is the first book in this series and you will be blown away!!!
In a world full of pain this story gives ones hope

Akrum Menacker’s review

Have you ever felt like you would never fit in? Of course you have, we all have at one point or another. But for some this is not simply being awkward socially, but much more. For 10 year old Matica, the problem is a physical one. She is not growing. Despite her age and having a younger brother, Matica has the body of a much younger child which has made her life a real challenge as far as making any friends in the little village in Peru where her parents are missionaries trying to help the local tribe. The tribe finds Matica’s situation strange and tend not to associate with her, making her more lonely than ever.

However, Matica does have knack for making friends. In this case its a pair of condors, which seems to fascinate the local villagers. But they are even more surprised when the bond between the undersized girl and the huge birds becomes so strong that when their egg is threatened by poachers they allow her to watch over and care for it. Soon the egg hatches and Talon is born. The villagers are more impressed than ever by the young girl as she helps raise the young condor, becoming an expert on the birds and soon Matica finds herself no longer the source of curious glances but a bit of a celebrity. But her true love for family and her condors never takes a backseat to this new status. Her dedication to both her families is unwavering and continues to grow just as quickly as Talon who is soon big enough and strong enough to take flight. But is he powerful enough to grant Matica’s most secret wish?

Aimed at preteens, this is a story that can be enjoyed by any age. As I said at the beginning of this review, we’ve all felt out of place and thought we’d never find where we truly belong. Matica’s journey is a tale that everyone can relate to. Sometimes its not finding where YOU fit in, but making a place for yourself in the world and watch it start swarming towards you.

This is such a wonderful tale, I have not problem giving it the 5-Star rating it deserves. I’m even more delighted to know that this is only the first installment. As of the writing of this review, there are four more books in the series. Needless to say, I’ll be adding them to my library and more reviews will come with time.

And now I will take my hat off to the author Gigi Sedlmayer, may she, Talon, Matica and the rest of this fine cast soar high and far for many years to come.

Read all the reviews and buy the book:

Also by Gigi Sedlmayer

51o8trgp4il-_uy250_ 510kmdvrffl-_uy250_ 51nirhb47l-_uy250_ 515tsm3dql-_uy250_Read all the reviews and buy the books:


Connect to Gigi via her website:

If you are in my virtual Cafe and Bookstore you can enjoy regular updates on your new books and reviews.

If you are not yet in the bookstore.. Why not?

Full details and the authors on the shelves is here:

Thank you for dropping in and it would be great if you could spread the word about these outstanding authors.. thanks Sally

Smorgasbord Women’s Health revisited – The Importance of Friends by author Olga Núñez Miret

smorgasbord health

For those just joining this series, we are revisiting posts from last year from the Women’s Health Week. Since then all of our communities have grown and to be honest health messages are well worth repeating regularly. I asked Olga if she would write a piece about the importance of a support system when going through a traumatic experience, particularly when it is health related.. She produced this amazing article that I am sure you will find both interesting and inspiring. Even if we are not going through difficult times, there are those that we are close to who are. Being there for them, in person or virtually can make a huge difference as I have found out in the past myself.


The Importance of Friends by author Olga Núñez Miret

Thanks so much to Sally for asking me to participate in her series of posts to celebrate national girlfriends’ day with a week of posts on women’s health. It’s a very important topic and one close to my heart.

I’m a doctor, a psychiatrist, a writer and translator, and evidently, I’m a woman. Although I’m not working in psychiatry at the moment, I worked for nearly ten years in male psychiatric units (because I worked in Forensic Psychiatry and secure units, like prisons, are segregated by gender. There was a move to do the same with general psychiatric units and in some places it took place, not everywhere, but that’s another topic) and I got used to talking to men about their specific health topics. But, I was also part of the Mental Health Trust group dealing with Physical Health issues (they tend to be forgotten and much more problematic to treat in patients with chronic mental health problems) and we had some great presentations and discussions looking at topics that affected women’s health.

We talked about staff, we talked about relatives or carers, but we didn’t talk about friends that much, although they are very important.

I was checking some articles about the benefits of having friends for your health, and all seem to conclude pretty much the same, having friends is good for your health, for your heart, and people with a good group of friends live longer. People respond better to treatments, suffer less pain… Of course the point is also made that some friends can be stressful and of course, we’ll worry more about the people we care more about. Older people who are lonely have higher blood pressure and sleep worse. Women’s friendships tend to be more geared towards empathy, sharing and listening, that is what we most need when we’re worried and concerned about our health. (Men’s friendships tend to be about companionship and helping each other with practical things, or that’s at least what the articles suggested).

There was a meta-study in 2010 at Brigham Young University (a study looking at the result of 148 previous studies) with a total of more than 300,000 participants where they concluded that people with high or adequate social relationships were 50% more likely to survive in the next five yearsthan those who didn’t. They summarised the negative effects of low social interaction as follows:

–As bad for your health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day.

–As dangerous as being an alcoholic.

–As harmful as never exercising.

–Twice as dangerous as obesity.

(Check the whole article here:

You might also find these articles interesting:

And this blog post, with Infographic incorporated:

You might be wondering the reason why having friends is healthy (and I’m sure you have your own theories and you’re likely right). Nobody knows for sure although there are suggestions that the support reduces stress that has a negative impact on many aspects of our health (both physically and mentally). It is also quite likely that if we surround ourselves with friends who look after themselves, have healthy habits, exercise and lead an active life, we will adjust our living style to match theirs. That’s one of the reasons why so many gyms and initiatives encourage people to buddy up and go to the gym with a friend as it’s likely that you’ll spur each other and keep going, motivation becoming less of an issue.

Being a doctor people regularly tell me about their medical concerns even if they are not my patients and that includes relatives, friends, neighbours, and people I work with… But in my heart of hearts I hope that many might ask me not only because I am a doctor but because I am a friend.

I’ve been with female friends at difficult times. I went with a friend to hospital when she was pregnant and worried because she was bleeding (unfortunately she has a miscarriage a few days later), and I spent time with her when that happened, I’ve accompanied friends when they‘ve had tests, I’ve visited sick friends and colleagues post-operation. Sometimes one feels a bit weird about these things, especially if perhaps you’ve only known the person in a certain role (as a work colleague, for example) and you don’t know their personal history that well. But I ask and take advice. I recall when I hadn’t been in the UK very long and was doing my first job as a junior doctor training in psychiatry; the daughter of one of the male nurses who worked in the same ward I was working had a terrible car accident and was left in a coma. I also knew the mother of the girl, who was also a psychiatric nurse and worked in the day hospital. Although things have changed now, at the time we lived in accommodation within the grounds of the hospital (again, another story), so I went to visit the girl most days after work, if I wasn’t on-duty. Luckily the girl recovered (and became a psychiatric nurse like her parents) although it took a few weeks. I wasn’t sure I did much other than be there, but I became very friendly with the family and they were very thankful. As I was saying, it’s difficult to know what might help, but don’t hesitate to offer your support if you can.

Living alone and not having relatives close by, I’ve also relied on friends when I’ve had minor interventions that meant I couldn’t drive or should not be left by myself (not that easy when your friends don’t live nearby and the hospital is elsewhere). And of course I’ve talked about health concerns with friends too. When I had a health scare a few years back, and I had booked to visit my friend Iman, an A&E nurse, in Paris, she insisted I get tests there. It wasn’t much of a holiday, but I’m very grateful to her and her family for their support.

In these modern days, sometimes we might have a lot of connections (the jury is still out with regards to how much virtual connections help. All the studies refer to actual people you know and you can depend upon, and that’s more difficult when somebody might be thousands of miles away) but a non-virtual girlfriend is quite a handy thing to have. And the more, the merrier.

Here I leave you a few links to sites talking about Women’s Health.

The NHS link: (It includes a part for professionals, blogs, community…)

US government site:

Thanks again and please follow the whole series and don’t forget to check on your friends!

Olga Nuñez Miret-amazon-author-The Writer Next Door

Olga Núñez Miret was born in Barcelona and moved to the UK to study in the 1990’s. She is a doctor and also a Forensic Psychiatrist until recently when she gave this up to pursue her dream of writing full time. Her fiction covers a number of genres including crime thriller, family saga, para-normal and romance. Olga is also a translator and works with other authors to introduce their books to a new and wider audience.

Olga’s books can be found in a number of formats including audio and are available in Spanish.


Olga has used her experience and insights in three works of fiction that follow Mary, a psychiatrist and writer, and her adventures in the series Escaping Psychiatry: She has recently released the prequel  Escaping Psychiatry – Beginnings.

The first of her books to be published as e-book (October 2012) is The Man Who Never Was also available in Spanish version: El hombre que nunca existió. In February 2013 she published a Young Adult novella in English Twin Evils? and Spanish Gemela Maldad.


In June 2013 she published her first foray in romantic fiction: Click Me Happy! A novella where readers can choose between three endings, an unhappy, a neutral and a happy one. Now also available in paperback.

In May 2014 she published Family, Lust and Cameras a novella in the psychological thriller style. And in June 2014 her book ‘Escaping Psychiatry’ became available in audiobook, narrated by Emmy Award winner actor and writer Alan Cooke (a.k.a Wild Irish Poet). A light hearted romance for those of us who are addicted cookery shows followed with I Love Your Cupcakes.


Olga’s latest release is a trilogy – Angelic Business and all three books in the trilogy have been released in English and Spanish.


To buy her books and to reach Olga through social media here are her links

Amazon –
Goodreads –

Audio books

Social Media

Website –
Facebook –

Thanks so much for dropping in and would love your feedback.. If you read last year you might still consider sharing to your new and wider audience to help spread the message.. Sally


Smorgasbord Open House – Author and Translator – Olga Nunez Miret

smorgasbord open house two

Today I am delighted to welcome my guest Olga Nunez Miret, a prolific author of a number of books across several genres.

Olga Núñez Miret 02

Olga was born in Barcelona and moved to the UK to study in the 1990’s. She is a doctor and also a Forensic Psychiatrist until recently, when she gave this up to pursue her dream of writing full time. Her fiction covers a number of genres including crime thriller, family saga, para-normal and romance. Olga is also a translator and works with other authors to introduce their books to a new and wider audience.

Olga is not just a supportive friend to all of us here in blog world but also to any Indie author that needs a boost. Her blog posts are informative, entertaining and her reviews are honest and show a great critical eye. If Olga says read this book.. Then you should.

She is a prolific author and here is a brief overview of her books to date most of which are in both English and Spanish.

41v+ZeNQzgL._UY250_Her first book Escaping Psychiatry is a collection of three stories in the psychological thriller genre with the same protagonist, Mary, a psychiatrist and writer. She is trying to develop her literary career but circumstances and friends conspire to keep dragging her back to psychiatry.


This was followed by The Man Who Never Was and Twin Evils?


Then came Click Me Happy! : Do you believe in love at first sight or first click? Do you think your life should be a romantic novel? Would you like to be able to choose the ending? If you’ve answered YES to any of these questions or feel intrigued by them, this novel offers you a unique opportunity. You can choose what kind of ending you want: unhappy, happy or neutral.


This was followed by Family, Lust and Cameras which is now available in audio as well as in text formats. Here are the links to audible but it will also be available on Amazon and i-Tunes shortly.
Sample in soundcloud:

For those who love cookery shows and romance; here is the perfect book –  I Love Your Cupcakes.


Her latest book is the Novella Escaping Psychiatry. Beginnings.

VD1IAbout the Book
How far would a writer go for a killer story? This is the question psychiatrist Mary Miller must answer to solve the first mystery/thriller of her career. You can get to know the main characters of this psychological thriller series for FREE and test your own acumen and intuition in this novella about the price of ambition.

Dr Mary Miller is a young psychiatrist suffering a crisis of vocation. Her friend Phil, a criminalist lawyer working in New York, invites her to visit him and consult on the case of a writer accused of a serious assault. His victim had been harassing him and accusing him of stealing his story, which he’d transformed into a best-selling book. The author denies the allegation and claims it was self-defence. When the victim dies, things get complicated. The threshold between truth and fiction becomes blurred and secrets and lies unfold.

Escaping Psychiatry. Beginnings is the prequel to Escaping Psychiatry a volume collecting three stories where Mary and her psychiatric expertise are called to help in a variety of cases, from religious and race affairs, to the murder of a policeman, and in the last case she gets closer than ever to a serial killer.

If you enjoy this novella, don’t forget to check Mary’s further adventures. And there are more to come.

One of the reviews for the book

Recommended Psychological Mystery  By Diogenes on 28 Mar. 2016 Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase

Having read, and enjoyed, the author’s trilogy of stories featuring psychiatrist Mary Miller, I was very happy to see this prequel novella pop up on Amazon – and even more enthused to see it as free! (Who says there is no such thing as a free lunch?)

Anyway, Olga Nunez Miret is bang on form with this tale of the death of a ‘stalker’, where all is not as it seems. This is a great introduction to an empathetic protagonist. Grab a copy quickly before the author changes her mind about its pricing.

Recommended for those who like a good psychological mystery with some human foibles thrown in to keep things real.

Read for Free Escaping Psychiatry. Beginnings.
Page Foundry:

Now it is time to hand over to Olga to find out which of the questions she chose to answer including who she would like to have a conversation with from the past.

Welcome back to the blog Olga and who would you like to meet from the past who you would like to have a conversation with. What would you tell them about their behaviour that you admired or disapproved of?

There are quite a few people from the past I’d like to talk to. Definitely quite a few writers I’d like to ask questions to, or simply hang around with (I’m fascinated by Herman Melville, I love Louisa May Alcott…), but I finally decided I’d love to talk to Michelangelo.

When I was a child I lived with my parents and my grandparents in a street of Barcelona that has his name and I’ve always been a great admirer of his art. I recently visited Florence, and I’ve also been to Rome and it’s even better when you see it close up and personal. I’ve always been curious about the publicised bad relationship he had with Leonardo Da Vinci, but more than anything I’d like to tell him how much I admire his work and to ask him about his art and how he felt when he was creating it.

I understand that at the time he worked under patronage and had to work on the projects commissioned, but which ones were his favourites? Was there something he would have liked to work on but didn’t have time to or the opportunity to? I wonder what he would have done with the means we have today. From reading some of his letters I get the sense he would be an interesting and amusing person to meet.

What is your favourite all time television series?

This is a difficult question as I’ve loved many at different times in my life, and it might depend on what mood you catch me when you ask me, but Brideshead Revisited  comes to mind.


I loved the Granada Television series when I saw it in Spain (I think I was 16 or 17), and I remember talking to all my friends about it. I read the Evelyn Waugh’s novel later on, and it’s a beautiful and compelling story, complex, with characters who struggle with their identities, their feelings and their place in society.

The series has a cast to die for (Jeremy Irons in the first big role I ever saw him in, but also Sir Laurence Olivier, Sir John Gielgud, Claire Bloom, Anthony Andrews…), the settings are gorgeous too. Oxford looks so beautiful, they visit Venice early on in the story, and Castle Howard, the Brideshead of the title, is such a wonderful place.

I remember at the time I recorded the episodes in a VHS video and went through the titles to find out where it was (no Google then) and decided I would visit it. And I have done so quite a few times. It’s a great place – – I’ve since watched a more recent movie version that I thought wasn’t bad, but can’t really compare to the original. I’ve recommended it to a few people who’d never watched it at the time and everybody has enjoyed it. So if anybody hasn’t watched it yet, go for it.

In your lifetime what event or invention has most impacted your own life or work?

I guess I had to say computers. I know they were invented before I was born (yes, I’m old but not quite that old) but the personal computer and its expansion has definitely made a big difference to all of our lives. I remember my mother wanted to buy me an electrical typewriter for one of my birthdays when I was 16 or 17 and I told her to hold on because I had the feeling that it would be better to wait and see what computers could do as typewriters might be on the out.

I remember going to a course on how to use computers in the office many years back and being told about ‘Windows’ that was going to revolutionise everything. Were they right or what? Of course it hasn’t only changed the experience of writing, but I remember the process of typing something, making a mistake and having to go through the whole piece or page again, correcting was a very slow process, checking facts or doubts meant having to find books on the subject, visiting libraries or finding people prepared to talk to you about it. And locations, places…

What is the one big adventure that you would like to experience?

I’ve talked about wanting to visit Alaska, but I guess I’d like to experience living doing something completely different for a while. Recently I found a site – – where you offer to help in exchange for food and accommodation, and you work in hostels, farms, help with animals… Some of the stays are short, some can be quite long, and they have offerings for very different parts of the world.

I suspect I might be a bit too old for it, but I think it could be a great experience and offer plenty of new material for quite a few books. I also read a book about a woman who goes to a Buddhist convent in China that made me wonder how that would be like.

With regards to new projects, I’ve just published the prequel to my series Escaping Psychiatry which you will find links to in the introduction. This is available free to offer people a taster of the main characters and see if they’d be interested in reading the rest of the series. I finished writing the draft of the next instalment in the same series (that for the moment is going by the title of Escaping Psychiatry. The case of the swapped bodies) but I’m letting it rest for a while and I suspect the process of editing and translating will take me a while.

I’m also wondering about writing a non-fiction book about my experience as a woman living on my own (I’ve started putting a few ideas together, but it’s only the bud of an idea). I’m refreshing my blog and I’m planning on promoting my translation services by offering a lucky author a major discount (in exchange for signing up to my new translation matters newsletter). If everything goes according to plan that will be next month.

Oh, and I almost forgot a reminder about the audio book Family, Lust and Cameras  which has been released on audio. Only 1:30 hours, so if anybody fancies listening to a pretty dark suspenseful revenge story…

Thanks so much for inviting me to blah, blah, about myself, and thanks to your readers for their patience.

My thanks to Olga for an interesting choice of questions and I think that if she does head off to Alaska we can expect some great posts about the adventure.

Here are links to buy all of Olga’s books and she has a number of selling sites to suit your requirements.. Also the various social media platforms that you can connect on.

Links and contact

Subscribe to my newsletter: English:
Amazon author page:úñez-Miret/e/B009UC58G0
Facebook author page:
Pinterest :
You Tube Channel:

Thanks for dropping in today and we would both appreciate your sharing the Open House on your own blog and social media. Enjoy the rest of the day.. Sally


Christmas Grotto – Audio Book – I Love Your Cupcakes by Olga Núñez Miret

Christmas Grotto

As we all get comfortable with reading books in so many varied formats; there is one in particular that I believe to be extremely important and will become so over the next couple of years. My husband does not read books anymore he listens to them and over the last five years has accumulated a huge library. He has been working on the house preparing it for sale and usually for at least eight hours a day. While he did so he worked his way through the books comfortably; even though I usually had to track him down to tell him lunch was ready.. Shouting at the top of my voice had little effect if he was deep in a trench in the garden and deep into Jack Reacher.

I already have an audio book out there from several years ago but I intend to narrate all of my others in coming months and offer alongside my print and Ebook versions.

Today I am featuring the audio version of I Love Your Cupcakes by Olga Núñez Miret which I am sure you will enjoy and is perfect for travelling as an alternative to music or if you are exercising or working in the house or garden.

51-IDfn0iWL._UY250_About the book.

Dulce, Adelfa and Storm, the protagonists of I Love Your Cupcakes are business partners, friends and share some “interesting” family connections. All the men Dulce meets only want to talk about her cakes and she’s tired of it. Her friend Adelfa, although she’s a Chemistry Professor, can’t manage to find the recipe for the perfect relationship. And Storm, the third of the partners of their bakery/coffee shop/bookshop/art gallery and ex-fire station, is an artist who is not a master in the art of love.

How could they imagine that at the studio of the contest “Do You Have What it Takes to Be the Next Baking Star?” they’d find sexual harassment, cheats, fights and also love? Recipes included (only for cakes, not love!)

Here is where you can find the book in audio with a sample read by the narrator Gwyn Olson and produced by Red Rose Studio.




A selection of other books by Olga Núñez Miret in Spanish and English



Buy all of Olga’s books.


About Olga in her own words.


My name is Olga Núñez Miret and I’m a writer, translator, reader, psychiatrist, I love movies, plays, fitness, owls and recently have taken up meditation (mindfulness). (I thought I might as well summarise and not take too much of your time). I’ll leave you some links at the end just in case you want to find out even more about me (I’m not sure I’d recommend it, but hey…do your worst!).

I’ve been writing since I was quite young and I write in whatever style the story I have in my head wants to be written in. So far literary fiction, romance, YA, thriller…and a few unfinished works.

Around five years ago I discovered and read quite a few interesting Young Adult books and had an idea for what I thought could be a series. At the time I wrote the first of the novels and after trying to find an agent or a traditional publisher without much success, I started self-publishing, but decided to publish some of my other books first. Since then I’ve published 12 books (6 original books and their translations, as I write in English and Spanish).

Link to Olga on her website and social media.


The grotto is almost full so if you would like to submit your books, art or music to go on the shelves then please check out the format above and contact me.  Here is the Grotto to date.

Please let us have your feedback and a few clicks on the share buttons would be very appreciated.