Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Meet the Authors 2021 – #Paranormal John W. Howell, #Poetry Anita Dawes, #WWII Paulette Mahurin


Over the summer I will be updating author’s details in the Cafe and Bookstore and also sharing their bios, books and recent reviews with you in this series…

Meet John W. Howell

John began his writing as a full-time occupation after an extensive business career. His specialty is thriller fiction novels, but John also writes poetry and short stories. His first book, My GRL, introduces the exciting adventures of the book’s central character, John J. Cannon. The second Cannon novel, His Revenge, continues the tension. The final book in the trilogy, Our Justice, launched in September 2016 concludes the thriller series. John’s fourth book Circumstances of Childhood, launched in October of 2017 tells a different thriller story of riches to rags, football, Wall Street, brotherly love, redemption, and inspiration with a touch of paranormal to keep you riveted.

The fifth book is a collaboration with the ​award-winning author, Gwen Plano titled The Contract. Heavenly bodies become concerned about the stability of the Earth and send two of their own to risk eternal salvation in order to save the planet. The Contract achieved number one status in its genre. All books are available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle editions.

John lives in Lakeway, Texas with his wife and their spoiled rescue pets.

Books by John Howell

A recent review for Eternal Road

D. W. Peach 4.0 out of 5 stars Time traveling adventure  Reviewed in the United States on April 18, 2021

Samantha has been dead since childhood, and when James is killed in a car accident, Sam becomes his guide, tasked with leading him to his eternal home. Don’t count on deep religious overtones or run of the mill theories about the afterlife in this book. The story quickly becomes a fantasy time-traveling “road trip” where Sam and James participate in key historical events such as the shootout at OK Corral, the battle at the Alamo, and the invasion of Normandy, to name a few. They also travel two thousand years into the future.

For most of the book, the plot rambles from event to event while the ultimate goal of reaching James’ eternal home takes a “back seat.” The tangents are interesting and details seem well researched, though loosely connected to the overall goal. The debonair Devil has his hand in the mix, and the sexual relationship between Sam and James offers intermissions between the tenser time-traveling activities.

Both Sam and James are well-rounded characters. Their relationship feels genuine, and the dialog flows naturally. Because Sam and James are already spirits, they aren’t in any mortal danger and they experience little fear. Other emotions, like grief and sadness, play a small part until the end when some of the more satisfying and heartfelt aspects of the story take place. This isn’t a deep philosophical read, but if you’re looking for a jaunt through time with two companionable friends, this will do it. Recommended.  

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

Meet Anita Dawes

Anita Dawes loves all things esoteric, magical and the otherworldly and would prefer to live in a fairy tale. In between these moments, she likes to visit old churches and ancient buildings.

She has written six fiction novels in various genres, Bad Moon, Simple, Secrets, The Scarlet Ribbon; Let it Go and Not My Life. Presently working on a sequel to her popular supernatural romance, The Scarlet Ribbon.

Anita has recently rediscovered her childhood love of poetry and often writes and posts them online. Her poetry collection Shadows was released in September 2020

Once owned by an egocentric black and white cat called Merlin, named after her favourite hero, Anita dislikes computers and prefers to writes longhand, sharing a website with Jaye Marie, who transcribes and edits her work…

A selection of books by Anita Dawes

One of the recent reviews for Shadows

Balroop Singh 5.0 out of 5 stars Short and focused  Reviewed in the United States on April 4, 2021

‘Shadows’ by Anita Dawes reflects on the shadows of life, some of which stay behind us while others inspire to drive away sadness and despair. The themes are universal and symbolize love, darkness, light, time, goodness and dreams. Most of the poems are short and focused. I like the clarity of style and thoughts.

‘Color me Red’ brilliantly describes the moods and yearnings of the poet; ‘Broken’ touches upon those moments of disillusionment and desperation when we need an affectionate touch to reassure ourselves and ‘Nine Gates’ is a little ambiguous but I guess the gates refer to our journey of life, with a message of caution at each step.
Wrong Mouse would make you smile. This collection is a nice assortment of challenges that life throws at us and how we handle them.

Read the reviews and buy the books – Amazon UK And:Amazon US follow Anita:Goodreads – Blog: Jaye and Anita’ Blog – Twitter: @jaydawes2

Meet Paulette Mahurin

Paulette Mahurin is an international best selling literary fiction and historical fiction novelist. She lives with her husband Terry and two dogs, Max and Bella, in Ventura County, California. She grew up in West Los Angeles and attended UCLA, where she received a Master’s Degree in Science.

Her first novel, The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap, made it to Amazon bestseller lists and won awards, including best historical fiction 2012 in Turning the Pages Magazine. Her second novel, His Name Was Ben, originally written as an award winning short story while she was in college and later expanded into a novel, rose to bestseller lists its second week out. Her third novel, To Live Out Loud, won international critical acclaim and made it to multiple sites as favorite read book of 2015. Her fourth book, The Seven Year Dress, made it to the bestseller lists for literary fiction and historical fiction on Amazon U.S., Amazon U.K. and Amazon Australia. Her fifth book, The Day I Saw The Hummingbird, was released in 2017 to rave reviews. Her sixth book, A Different Kind of Angel, was released in the summer of 2018 also to rave reviews.

Semi-retired, she continues to work part-time as a Nurse Practitioner in Ventura County. When she’s not writing, she does pro-bono consultation work with women with cancer, works in the Westminster Free Clinic as a volunteer provider, volunteers as a mediator in the Ventura County Courthouse for small claims cases, and involves herself, along with her husband, in dog rescue. Profits from her books go to help rescue dogs from kill shelters.

Books by Paulette Mahurin

One of the recent reviews for Where Irises Never Grow

Kathryn Gauci 5.0 out of 5 stars Where Irises Never Grow.  Reviewed in the United States on May 12, 2021

A story that takes us to the darkest places of Nazi-occupied France and the torture chambers of the Hotel Terminus where Klaus Barbie reigns supreme. I felt empathy for the Resistants struggling to walk a fine line between living a normal life and being caught in a web of horror. The story centers on Charlotte and Victor Legrand, and a temperamental young Jewish girl whose actions put their lives at risk. As the story unfolds, their lives are threatened. A harrowing story in places, but one told with empathy. It will grab you until the very last page. Highly recommended.  

Profits from Pauline’s books go to help rescue dogs from kill shelters.

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – And : Amazon UK – follow Paulette : Goodreads – Blog: The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap on WordPressTwitter: @MahurinPaulette

 

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

 

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Weekly News – #Poetry Annette Rochelle Aben, #autobiography Lucinda E. Clarke, #Poetry Anita Dawes, #Mystery Sharon Marchisello


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

The first book with a recent review is a collection of poetry by Annette Rochelle Aben – A Haiku Perspective 2016..

About the collection

Welcome! Prepare to be entertained, enchanted and encouraged to tell YOUR stories using an ancient Japanese technique of writing poetry. To tell a story with seventeen syllables, we create haiku. Each poem in A Haiku Perspective 2016, tells a story in its own unique way. A Haiku Perspective 2016 is a modern day, American poet’s way of celebrating life through her love of writing, haiku!

One of the recent reviews for the collection

Robbie Cheadle5.0 out of 5 stars A sprinkling of happy dust Reviewed in the United States on March 28, 2021

I am a fan of Ms Aben’s lovely haikus and other poetry. She is one of the most uplifting people I know and her writing makes me feel happy and able to face the world which isn’t always a happy place. I think this is a real gift. I often have a peep into one of the poet’s books when I feel in need of some happy dust. A few examples of her work from this book are as follows:

“Ahh
Nice moments are grand
Giving us distraction
And Great Memories”

“Smile
Sometimes life hugs you
Just when you least expect it
A whisper of hope”

From Born to Bless
“You’ll be the rainbow
The moment your remember
You always were”  

A selection of other books by Annette Rochelle Aben

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – And : Amazon UK – Follow Annette: Goodreads – Blog: Annette Rochelle Aben WordPress – Twitter:@YouAreTheExpert

The next author is Lucinda E. Clarke for Walking on Eggshells:Surviving Mental Abuse

About the book

Walking Over Eggshells is an autobiography that tells the story of a mentally abused child, who married a “Walter Mitty” clone. They moved from England to Kenya, from Libya to Botswana and on again to South Africa. It took all her courage to survive in situations that were at times dangerous, sometimes humorous, but always nerve wracking. She had a variety of jobs, different types of homes, and was both a millionairess and totally broke. She met royalty, hosted ambassadors, and won numerous awards for her writing and television programs. She also climbed over garbage dumps, fended off bailiffs, and coped being abandoned in the African bush with a seven-week-old baby with no money or resources. She admits to being the biggest coward in the world, but her survival instincts kicked in and she lived to tell her story. This book will make you laugh and cry and hopefully inspire others who did not have the best start in life either. All names have been changed to protect both the guilty and the innocent – and that includes the author as well!

A recent review for the book

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 28 March 2021

Walking Over Eggshells is one of those books that keeps on surprising from start to finish. Several times I found myself thinking, ‘Well nothing could possibly top that!’ and each time, something did. This is a remarkable true story ; a sweeping tale of cycles of extreme poverty and unimaginable wealth in locations spanning different countries and cultures. From Benghazi to Botswana the pace never lets up and the book is peppered with shocks and tragedies. The author lightens the narrative with remarkable humour and I was left with admiration for someone who could experience the hardships and ordeals that she did and yet come through it all with an objective viewpoint and a smile on her face.
Walking Over Eggshells will make you want to weep, rage and cheer. It’s one of those gems that deserves to be read. Give it a go and be prepared for a bumpy, emotional, ultimately satisfying ride.  

A selection of books by Lucinda E. Clarke

Read the reviews and buy the books : Amazon US – And : Amazon UK – Blog:WordPress Lucinda E. Clarke — Follow Lucinda:GoodreadsTwitter: @LucindaEClarke

The next review is for Shadows by Anita Dawes.

About the book

A collection of Anita Dawes best poems – about love and longing – hopes and dreams – there will be something for everyone…

One of the recent reviews for Shadows

Balroop Singh 5.0 out of 5 stars Short and focused  Reviewed in the United States on April 4, 2021

‘Shadows’ by Anita Dawes reflects on the shadows of life, some of which stay behind us while others inspire to drive away sadness and despair. The themes are universal and symbolize love, darkness, light, time, goodness and dreams. Most of the poems are short and focused. I like the clarity of style and thoughts.

‘Color me Red’ brilliantly describes the moods and yearnings of the poet; ‘Broken’ touches upon those moments of disillusionment and desperation when we need an affectionate touch to reassure ourselves and ‘Nine Gates’ is a little ambiguous but I guess the gates refer to our journey of life, with a message of caution at each step.

Wrong Mouse would make you smile. This collection is a nice assortment of challenges that life throws at us and how we handle them.

A selection of other books by Anita Dawes

Read the reviews and buy the books – Amazon UK And:Amazon US follow Anita:Goodreads – Blog: Jaye and Anita’ Blog – Twitter: @jaydawes2

The last book today with a recent review, is a murder mystery – Secrets of the Galapagos by Sharon Marchisello

About the book

Shattered by a broken engagement and a business venture derailed by Jerome Haddad, her unscrupulous partner, Giovanna Rogers goes on a luxury Galapagos cruise with her grandmother to decompress.

At least that’s what her grandmother thinks. Giovanna is determined to make Jerome pay for what he’s done, and she has a tip he’s headed for the Galapagos.

While snorkeling in Gardner Bay off the coast of Española Island, Giovanna and another cruise passenger, tortoise researcher Laurel Pardo, both become separated from the group and Laurel is left behind. No one on the ship will acknowledge Laurel is missing, and Giovanna suspects a cover-up.

When the police come on board to investigate a death, Giovanna is sure the victim is Laurel. She’s anxious to give her testimony to the attractive local detective assigned to the case. Instead, she learns someone else is dead, and she’s a person of interest.

Resolved to keep searching for Laurel and make sense of her disappearance, Giovanna finds that several people on board the cruise ship have reasons to want Laurel gone. One is a scam involving Tio Armando, the famous Galapagos giant tortoise and a major tourist attraction in the archipelago. And Jerome Haddad has a hand in it. Thinking she’s the cat in this game, Giovanna gets too involved and becomes the mouse, putting her life in jeopardy. But if she doesn’t stop him, Jerome will go on to ruin others.

A recent review for the book

Steven Williams4.0 out of 5 stars Great Summer Read – Better Winter Read Reviewed in the United States on March 23, 2021

I read this book during lockdown, over the winter and it was honestly such a beautiful adventure. It served as a bit of an escape which I thoroughly appreciated. The book is full of action, intrigue and romance. Romance has never really been a selling point for me when it comes to novels, movies or really any storytelling medium, but Sharon does it well. I highly recommend this book, if you are going on vacation to anywhere but the Galapagos. I also highly recommend this book if its a dark and dreary winter, and you need to envision yourself somewhere else. The book is set somewhere wonderful and the mystery keeps you engaged for the long-haul.

Also by Sharon Marchisello

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – and:Amazon UK – follow Sharon:Goodreadsblog: Sharon Blogspot – Twitter: @SLMarchisello

 

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

 

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Author Updates #Reviews – #Western Jan Sikes, #Contemporary Ritu Bhathal, #Mystery Richard W. Wise, New Release Anita Dawes


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

The first author with a recent review is Jan Sikes for her latest release, the short story Brazos Wind…

About the book

War-torn drifter, Jack McClean is left with nothing but bad memories, scars, and a restless soul. When he stumbles upon a burning homestead, and an unconscious woman, beside the Clear Fork of the Brazos River, he stops to render aid. Grieving widow, Savannah Logan, sees no reason to live, and only wants to join her husband and children in their graves. But, Jack refuses to let her die. In saving her, he might somehow find redemption for himself and hope for a new tomorrow. Is it possible that both Jack and Savannah can find a new destiny in the changeable flow of the Brazos wind?

One of the recent reviews for the book on Goodreads

Sep 16, 2020 Jacquie rated it Four Stars
Two damaged souls come together to mend their wounded spirits.

Jack McClean has seen the worst of humanity during the war and just wants to find a quiet place to finish out his life. When he comes across an unconscious woman next to a burned out home, Jack is given the opportunity to change his path.

Savannah Logan lost her faith in God with the deaths of her husband and two children. She’s living-barely- day-to-day when a fire destroys the one thing she has left- her home. Now she just wants to curl up and wait to die, but an aimless drifter arrives on her doorstep and gives her the will to live.

This short story has all the feel-goods of a much longer novel. I quickly became invested in Jack and Savannah and their journey. Hopefully, there will be more about these two in an upcoming book!

Second chances can be right around the corner- don’t give up

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

A selection of books by Jan Sikes

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

The first author today is Ritu Bhathal for her romance Marriage Unarranged.

About the book

It all started ended with that box…

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

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

But then Aashi found the empty condom box…

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

Old images erased, new beginnings to explore.

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

One of the recent reviews for the book

Zoe May 5.0 out of 5 stars Loved the characters and getting to revisit India 😀  Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 18 September 2020

I loved this book! I’m a big fan of all things India and so this book was IDEAL for me. The main character, Aashi’s arranged marriage falls through when it turns out that the man she is engaged to, Ravi, has been cheating. To clear her head, Aashi heads off to India with her friend Kiran and her brothers Sunny and Bali. I LOVED being in India with these characters. I’ve been to Delhi and really enjoyed revisiting parts like Chandi Chowk and Connaught Place. The descriptions were so evocative and took me right back! If you have been to India, this book will allow you to wander back down memory lane, and if you haven’t been, you’ll get such a genuine and realistic insight into Indian life and culture by reading this novel.

I also really liked all the characters in the book. They all felt very realistic and were likeable and vulnerable in their own different ways. Although Aashi’s story takes centre stage, I liked that Kiran, Bali and Sunny also developed during the course of the book and experienced growth during the trip to India.

A wonderful book which has made me crave another trip to India, not to mention some parathas 😀

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

Also by Ritu Bhathal

Ritu Bhathal, Buy: Amazon UK – andAmazon US- Blog: Ritu Bhathal WordPress Follow Ritu: Goodreads – Twitter: @RituBhathal

The next author today with a recent review for Redlined: A Novel of Boston is Richard W. Wise

About the book

The year is 1974. Boston’s Jamaica Plain is a neighborhood under siege, a community skating along the razor’s edge of decline. The banks have REDLINED Jamaica Plain, causing the housing market to crash, wiping out local homeowner’s lifetime investments and opening the neighborhood to blockbusters and slumlords. Now, someone has begun systematically torching those abandoned buildings and the charred body of Sandy Morgan, a dedicated young neighborhood organizer, has been found among the ashes. Why? Who stands to gain?

Community organizer and Marine combat veteran, Jedidiah Flynt and Alex Jordan, his beautiful Harvard educated researcher together with a group of local property owners are determined to stop the redlining and and bring the arsonists responsible for Sandy Morgan’s death to justice. Their search will lead them through a labyrinth of corrupt politicians, Asian gangsters and bent churchmen.
Two interwoven plots work their way through the narrative, one is absolutely true, the other never happened, but might have.

One of the recent reviews for the book

I liked the book because Rick Wise as a community organizer in this neighborhood of Boston accurately told the story of the impact of bank redlining and disinvestment and how effective community organizing can make a difference in a better story of opportunity being achieved.

All the stories about the issues and organizing are true and actually happened back then in this neighborhood.

He adds elements that make it a novel about a death by arson of an organizer though there was much arson and people did die. And he adds a scheme about corruption around state legislative approval of a casino and unsavory support for it from a Catholic priest though unfortunately such scandals action by politicians and betrayals by priests do actually occur. All of this material makes the novel a page turner to read.

I knew of Rick and his organization’s effective work in the Jamaica Plain neighborhood in this period as I was a community organizer working on similar issues in another neighborhood of Boston called Dorchester and still do this organizing work today..

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

Also by Richard W. Wise

Richard W. Wise, Buy: Amazon US –  And: Amazon UK – follow Richard: Goodreads –  Website: The French BlueFacebook: Richard Wise Books

The final author today is Anita Dawes with her latest release, a collection of poems Shadows

About the Collection

A collection of Anita Dawes best poems – about love and longing – hopes and dreams – there will be something for everyone…

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

Also by Anita Dawes

One of the recent reviews for The Scarlet Ribbon

Sep 03, 2020 James rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Scarlet Ribbons, also known as The Scarlet Ribbon, by Anita Dawes is a contemporary fiction novel that focuses on the afterlife and how one woman deals with the tragedy of a single moment in time, a moment she couldn’t prevent from occurring. I became familiar with the book after following the author’s blog and learning more about her collaboration with Jaye Marie on a variety of a projects.

In this tale, Maggie Haynes is hit by a car. Her husband witnesses the accident and is forced to watch his beloved wife put on life support when she falls into a coma. When Maggie goes under, her life seems to separate into reality and another world. In one path, she recovers and finds herself heading down a certain troubling existence… and in another, she’s somewhere beyond the Earth… not quite heaven or hell… not even clear of the specifics, but this new world can be quite scary. She’s able to ‘cross over’ to see some things happening back home, and it’s not always a good thing.

Can you imagine being able to watch your loved ones grieve? What if they decided to move on? Are you aware of how long you are in the coma? When Maggie discovers various connections with new people she meets in her confusing new life, she can’t help but think about how much is real and how much might be a dream. Is she trapped somewhere? Will she wake up paralyzed from the accident? Is she secretly already dead? What does her family think has happened? So many amazing questions to ponder while reading this book…

I enjoyed the writing style. At times, the author whisks you away into a dreamy state; even I was uncertain which world Maggie resided in during these moments. It’s a tough and scary topic, but Dawes pushes you to consider all the options and angles. What if you were meant to disappear for a while so that you could save someone else? A child who desperately needs your help deserves unselfish reactions, right? Maggie and her husband chose not to have kids but was this a reality check? When she visits previous periods in her family’s life, learning what it was like for them to grow up, it destabilizes her core… Maggie can’t be sure which life she wants to hold on to – new or old. And can she change her mind?

In the end, she dives deep into understanding her new world, with the help of some friends and possible a foe or two, and she comes out stronger. But it is the shocking surprise finale that left me wondering… how much of this could really happen in our future? Dawes pushes me to think about past lives, reincarnation, soul therapy, and so much more. I enjoyed the writing style and development on the worlds most of all. If you’ve got an open mind and a love of ethereal and other worldly existences, this is a good one to read. I’m left wondering what additional themes the author explores in her other books now! Must check one out in the near future.

Anita Dawes, buy Amazon UK – And: Amazon US –  follow Anita: Goodreads – Blog: Jaye and Anita’ Blog – Twitter: @jaydawes2

 

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