Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Updates #Reviews #ParanormalYA Robbie Cheadle, #Fantasy C.S. Boyack, #Childrens Eloise de Sousa


Welcome to the last cafe update of 2019… from Friday it will move to Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore…and over the coming weeks, a new look.

The first author with a recent review is Roberta Eaton Cheadle for Through the Nethergate.

About the book

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

One of the recent reviews for the book

Margaret is a girl with a special gift that allows her to see ghosts who are trapped in an overworld between Heaven and Hell. She’s able to help them regain life, then help them move on in the hereafter. When she moves in with her grandfather after the death of her parents, Margaret encounters a number of ghosts, and a particularly nasty black dog that is actually the embodiment of Hugh Bigod, an evil spirit who has held the ghosts trapped for centuries. Hugh has his own ideas how Margaret’s gifts can be used to his benefit.

This is a YA horror novel that will also appeal to adults, especially with the deep research the author layers into the historical aspects of the book. I found those the strongest and was enthralled by how skillfully Cheadle brought the past to life. There are a few POV issues and a good deal of internal thought, the latter which occasionally bogs things down, but for the most part this is a quick and easy read. Margaret’s grandfather is also a strong character, and the background of many of the ghosts adds a fascinating aspect. Most of the spirits are based on historic figures. I don’t usually read books that employ Lucifer as a character, and admit to skimming some of those chapters, but overall, I found this a compelling story on multiple levels.

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

Read all the reviews and buy the books :Amazon US

And: Amazon UK

Read more reviews and follow Robbie : Goodreads

Connect to Robbie via her blog: Robbie’s Inspiration

Now for a recent review for C.S. Boyack and  Viral Blues (The Hat Book 2)

About the book

Someone knows about the hat. The creature from another dimension that helps Lizzie fight against the creatures of darkness.

They are summoned to a cryptic meeting with a secret society, where they meet other people with enhanced skills. It turns out someone, or something, has been tampering with the world’s vaccine supply. The goal doesn’t appear to be political or financial, but biblical pestilence.

Can this group of loners come together in time to make a difference when even the proper authorities are obstacles?

Check out Viral Blues, for your dose of paranormal adventure, with a strong sample of dark humor. And in recent superhero style, don’t miss the secret last chapter after the back material.

One of the recent reviews for Viral Blues

Avengers Assemble!

Okay – maybe they’re not the real Avengers, but these characters are still a talented team fighting for the same cause, each bringing a different skill set to the table. Although I wasn’t as familiar with a couple of characters, I’d had such fun reading about Lizzie and the Hat in the first book, knew Lisa (one of my favs) from the author’s blog, and adored Clovis (love his style) and his dog from The Playground. With such a stellar collection of characters, I had high expectations for this novel – and Boyack didn’t disappoint. The addition of zombies (I’m a big fan) to the story just made it even better.

With a touch of the paranormal, witty and amusing dialogue, thrilling action scenes, and a cast of lively characters, Viral Blues is a rousing adventure I highly recommend. Once you’ve finished, you’ll be anxious to check out each character in their previous books.

A small selection of other books by C.S. Boyack

 Read all the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US

And :  Amazon UK

Read more reviews and follow C.S. Boyack:  Goodreads

Connect to Craig via his blog: Cold Hand Boyack

A recent review for the  latest children’s book by Eloise de Sousa.. Space Dust

About Space Dust

We’re going on a trip in Big Ox’s canoe. Watch the fire bears roar on Venus as pepper pot trees grow on the moon. As Big Ox steers us to the planets, Litte One wonders if Mum will come home soon.

One of the recent reviews for the book

Dec 10, 2019 M.J. Mallon rated it Five Stars

A very cute picture book that will make both the adult and the child smile. Lovely simple illustrations by the author which are colourful and fun. A recommendation for parents, carers and grandparents to read to their little ones.

Received a copy of the book from the author but my opinions are my own and unbiased.

#Recommended for young children, parents, grandparents, carers.

A small selection of other books by Eloise de Sousa

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US

And on : Amazon UK

Read the reviews on Goodreads: Goodreads

Connect to Eloise via her: Blog

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

Smorgasbord Blogger Daily – Monday 11th November 2019. Robbie Cheadle with Ritu Bhathal, Patricia Furstenberg and Richard Dee


Time to catch up on some of my favourite blogs again after our two weeks away.

The first post is from Robbie Cheadle who is in the process of promoting poets in a Readathon.. And in this post she is showcasing Ritu Bhathal.

Poetry readathon

Today I am introducing you to poet, author and blogger, Ritu Bhathal. Ritu has selected a lovely poem from her book Poetic RITUals to share here today.

From Twinkle to Reality

Let me take you down that road,

Much-travelled through eternity

The journey to become a mum,

From twinkle to reality.

Head over and enjoy the rest of the poem and post: https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/2019/11/09/poetryreadathon-meet-poet-and-blogger/

Robbie and Michael Cheadle, Buy: https://www.amazon.com/Robbie-Cheadle/e/B01N9J62GQ Blog: https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/ Goodreads: Robbie Goodreads

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Now a guest post by Patricia Furstenberg on the blog Books by Women on the subject of women writers and contemporary war fiction.

At some stage during my adult life, and this will astound my history teacher if she’d discover, I found myself fascinated by the thought of writing fiction inspired by contemporary events.

A thread that brought me here might have been reading Margaret Mitchell’s “Gone with the Wind” in my teens; another one, witnessing the terrorist attack on World Trade Center on Live TV while pregnant with my daughter. A definite thread, silky and alluring, came from enjoying historical fiction by Philippa Gregory and Diana Gabaldon. While the most recent one, still carding itself, draws from my son’s keen interest in war computer games and my own, in military working dogs.

When the seed of writing a fictional book about dogs involved in combat was still on the counter, not even planted yet, I turned to literature for guidance. And hit a wall.

Contemporary war fiction penned by women pales in comparison to the amount of books written by men. Be it in poetry or prose, throughout the centuries an author, not an authoress, depicted more often the combat male protagonist. As Homer put it in his Iliad, “war will be men’s business”.

Why so, since countless notable women were not afraid of fighting battles? The Greek goddess Athena is shown as a warrior, the patron of justice, strategic warfare, mathematics, and arts. The Celtic goddess Brigid is the patron of poetry and smithcraft. Scathach is an Irish Goddess who taught the martial arts. The Amazons were fierce warrior women and there were even gladiator women, gladiatrices, although Juvenal, the Roman poet of those times, depicted them as a mere novelty. History is splattered with the blood of innumerable women warriors: Hatshepsut, Queen Boudicca, Queen Samsi of Arabia, the Trung Sisters from Vietnam, Empress Theodora of Byzantium, Olga of Russia, Eleanor of Aquitaine, Mary I and Elizabeth I of England.

Please head over to read the rest of this fascinating article by Patricia: http://booksbywomen.org/why-we-need-contemporary-war-fiction-written-by-women/

Patricia Furstenberg, Buy: https://www.amazon.com/Patricia-Furstenberg/e/B018QGC570 Blog:  http://alluringcreations.co.za/wp/ Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8867736.Patricia_Furstenberg

Here is a post for all of you who are in the second week of your NaNoMo projects from Richard Dee who completed the challenge with the first in his Andorra Pett series in 2016. Head over to compare your experiences of this writing challenge.

Welcome back to my trip through the NaNo projects of the past.

This time, I’m looking at 2016. I didn’t attempt NaNo in 2015, I was otherwise engaged in adjusting to life after work, as I mentioned last week. My shoulder required an operation in the end, an 8mm bone spur was removed. After six months off work. I decided to take early retirement, rather than have to retrain and re-certify for a job that I had been doing for forty years. Don’t you just love the system?

Ribbonworld, the subject of last weeks post, was actually published in November 2015. And I did write a novel in 2015, just not in one concentrated spell or as part of the NaNo challenge. A change of genre for me, it was a Steampunk adventure called The Rocks of Aserol.

I also wrote several short stories. Among them was one that I wrote as a bet. My wife had challenged me to write a female character, and to do a ‘woman-runs-away-from-it-all-and-starts-again-in-a-new-place’ type story, only set in space.

I thought about it and had an idea for a jilted woman, who reluctantly turns amateur detective when she is forced to, by circumstances beyond her control.

I named her Andorra Pett and based her on a combination of the character traits of my wife and my three daughters.

Head over to find out more about Richard’s experiences and to add your own: https://richarddeescifi.co.uk/the-second-monday-of-nanowrimo-2/

Richard Dee, buy: https://www.amazon.com/Richard-Dee/e/B00CN4TTCG/
Website: http://richarddeescifi.co.uk/Goodreads: Richard Dee at Goodreads

Please go to Amazon or Richard’s website to view all his books.

 

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you will head over to read all these posts in full…more tomorrow thanks Sally

Smorgasbord Reblog – Poetryreadathon – Meet poet, author and blogger, Sue Vincent with Robbie Cheadle.


Robbie Cheadle is running another series of her popular PoetryReadathon and in this post she shares a wonderful French/English poem from author, blogger and poet Sue Vincent.

Poetry readathon

Sue Vincent from the inspirational blog Sue Vincent’s Daily Echo is the author of a number of unique and interesting books which you can find along the sidebar of her blog.

Sue is also a director of the Silent Eye, a modern mystery school which you can find out more about on the website  Dare to Awaken to Being

Sue is kicking off my poetry readathon series of blog posts by sharing her poem, My Quest, written in French and English, as well as how she came to write this poem and its meaning to her.

‘My Quest’ was written many years ago. I had gone to work in Paris, eventually married a French musician and we set up home in Vichy where our eldest son was born. It was during this time that my schoolgirl French matured and became fluent, though not always completely correct!

Please head over to find out the background to My Quest and read the poem in French and English: https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/2019/11/02/poetryreadathon-meet-poet-author-and-blogger-sue-vincent

Robbie and Michael Cheadle, Buy: https://www.amazon.com/Robbie-Cheadle/e/B01N9J62GQ Blog: https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/ Goodreads: Robbie Goodreads

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I hope that you will head over and enjoy the post in full. thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Blogger Daily – Monday 14th October – Nicholas Rossis #Bookblurb – Charles F. French with Robbie Cheadle #1984 and Susannah Leonard Hill #Halloween Children’s story competition.


This series is an opportunity to showcase posts from around our community and the brilliant bloggers who share with us. It would be amazing if you would follow the links to the post I have highlighted and whilst visiting follow and support the blogger.

The first post today comes from Nicholas Rossis who has a wonderful archive of posts about writing, publishing, blogging and software. Nicholas hosts guest Ashley Halsey, writing about the importance of having an effective blurb for your book.

 

This is a guest post by Ashley Halsey. Ashely is a professional writer at Luckyassignments.com and Gumessays.com and is also involved in several nation-wide projects. A mother of two, she enjoys reading, traveling, and attending business training courses!

Today, she tackles one of the most annoying things about being an author: writing the blurbs to your books! I have shared some nice tips on writing blurbs in the past, but the whole subject still seems to be a nightmare for most authors, so I hope you’ll get inspired by her tips.

Top Tips on Writing a Book Blurb That Really Sells

They say not to judge a book by its cover – but let’s be honest, we all do exactly that. The cover and blurb are crucial in drawing in potential readers, sparking their interest and, in many cases, can be the difference between a sale and a missed opportunity. Bearing this in mind, hook your reader from the start with a blurb that sells!

Head over and read the rest of this post for all authors to ensure that our books stand out from the crowd: https://nicholasrossis.me/2019/10/11/top-tips-on-writing-a-book-blurb-that-really-sells

Nicholas Rossis, Buy: http://www.amazon.com/Nicholas-C.-Rossis/e/B00FXXIBZA
Blog:http://nicholasrossis.me/ Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7426506.Nicholas_C_Rossis

Please visit Amazon or Nicholas’s website to view all his books.

The next post on from the blog of author Charles F. French, whose guest is a familiar face over here.. Robbie Cheadle, with her debut post for the Underground Library Society dedicated to opposing book censorship and book banning.. Robbie explores the futuristic and frighteningly prophetic 1984 by George Orwell.

Underground Library Society

Thank you to Robbie Cheadle for her post on 1984 by George Orwell. With this entry, Robbie has joined the U. L. s., the Underground Library Society, dedicated to opposing book censorship and book banning. Please visit her blog Robbie’s inspiration .

If a society similar to that depicted in Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury were to somehow come into existence and all books were banned, I would want to be part of any group involved in preserving books. If that meant learning a book off by heart, I would be prepared to do that. The big question for me would be what book to choose.

Out of all the wonderful and amazing books out there, my choice is 1984 by George Orwell. My over view of this book and my reasons as to why I believe it is still relevant to us are as follows:

1984 is a dystopian novel that was written years ago to portray a possible future for mankind as envisaged by the author in 1949. Why would anyone want to read this book now? 1984 passed more than thirty years ago so why would this book still be a worthwhile read today? The answer is that the content and ideas presented in this book are still relevant and it portrays a future that is still a possible outcome for humanity if the threats to our existing lifestyles and our planet are not resolved and harsh totalitarian measures need to be introduced as a last desperate measure to save our world. The threat of world destruction using nuclear weapons is much less likely now than in 1949, but modern people merely face new threats and obstacles which are also of our own creation.

Head over to read the rest of this fascinating post by Robbie Cheadle: https://charlesfrenchonwordsreadingandwriting.wordpress.com/2019/10/07/a-new-u-l-s-member-and-a-post-on-1984-by-george-orwell/

About Charles F. French
I am a writer, novelist, and a professor of English Literature. I live in Pennsylvania. I am a devoted lover of nature, including hiking and fishing. I love reading, movies, cooking, and eating. I enjoy comic books and superheros as well as horror novels and movies.

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Charles-F-French/e/B01M5BZZ6BGoodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15997896.Charles_F_FrenchBlog: https://charlesfrenchonwordsreadingandwriting.wordpress.com

Robbie and Michael Cheadle, Buy: https://www.amazon.com/Robbie-Cheadle/e/B01N9J62GQ Blog: https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/Goodreads: Robbie Goodreads

Head over to Amazon to find all of Robbie’s books

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And the last post today is news of a Halloween children’s story competition from author Susanna Leonard Hill.

halloweensie-pumpkin

It was a dark and stormy night!

Ghostly shadows lurked among the grave stones…

…and from the mist-shrouded forest a ghastly voice shrieked, “BOO!!!!”

Please ignore the fact that it’s morning and the kitchen smells comfortingly of fresh coffee and toast with strawberry jam and the only sound is your preschooler singing the alphabet song. We’re setting a mood here! 🙂

And I bet you can guess why!

Because it’s time to announce the rules for. . . The 9TH Annual HALLOWEENSIE CONTEST!!!

Head over to get the full submission details: https://susannahill.com/2019/10/10/boo-announcing-the-9th-annual-halloweensie-writing-contest/

About Susannah Leonard Hill

Susanna Leonard Hill grew up in New York City with her mom and dad, one sister and two brothers, and an assortment of cats. She went to the Brearley School for K – 12, then received her B.A. in English and Psychology from Middlebury College. She then went on to get her M.A. and M.Ed. in Counseling Psychology and Special Education of Children With Learning Disabilities from Teacher’s College, Columbia University.

She worked for many years teaching dyslexic students, but stopped after her third child was born. Now she spends her time being a mom, writing, teaching writing, and visiting schools whenever she gets the opportunity.

Susannah is the author of twenty children’s books and you can find them all on Amazon.

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Susanna-Leonard-Hill/e/B001JS4H3I/Blog: https://susannahill.com/ Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/susanna.hill.7

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you will head over to enjoy the posts in full.. thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Blogger Daily – September 4th, 2019 – Jennie Fitzkee, Sue Vincent, Robbie Cheadle, James J. Cudney


A return of the Blogger Daily at least once a week.

It is an opportunity to showcase posts from around our community and the brilliant bloggers who share with us. It would be amazing if you would follow the links to the post I have highlighted and whilst visiting follow and support the blogger.

The first post is very timely as children and teachers return to school, and it is by Jennie Fitzkee, who shares the wisdom gained from over 30 years as a teacher of the youngest school children, preparing them for life and infusing their absorbent minds with a love of learning.

Finding Joy – A Letter to Teachers by Jennie Fitzkee

This is a re-post of a letter I wrote to teachers on Joy.
Joy is the magic word!

Dear Teachers,

As you start your new school year there is one word that will get you through the uncertainty and the worry. It’s the same word that is the heart of educating. That word is ‘joy’. No, it’s not the happiness that children bring. It’s the happiness that you bring because it inspires and ignites the mind and the heart of children. Yes, that’s how it works.

Children come to you with big eyes, looking at you to teach them. They don’t know what to think. They want to learn, yet what they really want is to be inspired to learn. That is where you can make a difference.

What do you like? Because whatever it is, from math to music, that ‘like’ will become your best buddy, your guiding star, and the foundation to teach all the things that you like. It will also become a portal to help you teach the things you may not enjoy. If you know that every day you have some window of time to teach what you love, then you become an educator. You go beyond teaching curriculum; you teach the child.

Do you like reading? Does Because of Winn-Dixie or Charlotte’s Web make your heart jump? Well, carry that book around and read it aloud on the playground, in the lunchroom, or at the bus stop. If this is your passion, children will know, and they will listen. They will learn.

Please head over and read the rest of this wonderful and inspiring post: https://jenniefitzkee.com/2019/09/02/finding-joy-a-letter-to-teachers/

Connect to Jennie – Blog: https://jenniefitzkee.com/ –  Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jennie.fitzkee – Twitter: https://twitter.com/jlfatgcs

The next blog post is from Robbie Cheadle as a guest on the blog of Sue Vincent who incidentally loves guests and if you would like a fantastic place to showcase your blog and books then head over and find out more…

Robbie has recently been on tour of England and Scotland with some wonderful tales to share on her return.. This post is about the legendary Highwayman Dick Turpin.. but was he really that legendary… A snippet to whet your appetite and then click on the link to find out the truth.

The myth of Dick Turpin by Robbie Cheadle

Fiction writer, Harrison Ainsworth, glamourised thief and highway man, Dick Turpin, in his 1834 novel, Rookwood. The novel is set in England in 1737 at a manor house called Rookwood Place and the plot revolves around the mysterious death of the owner, Piers Rookwood, and the subsequent rivalry for inheritance of the property between his two sons.

During the course of the story, Dick Turpin, a highway man, is introduced at the manor under the pseudonym Palmer. During his stay, Palmer makes a bet with one of the other house guests that he can capture Dick Turpin. He is eventually forced to escape upon his horse, Black Bess. The horse, although fast enough to stay ahead of all the other horses, eventually collapses and dies from the stress of the escape.

In the novel, Ainsworth describes Turpin as galloping north in the dark: “His blood spins through his veins; winds round his heart; mounts to his brain. Away! Away! He is wind with joy.” Ainsworth’s depiction of Turpin, together with the local narratives, poems and ballads that resulted from it, gave Turpin a notorious posthumous status.

Head over to read the truth about Dick Turpin and don’t forget to check out the opportunity to guest post with Sue Vincent: https://scvincent.com/2019/09/02/guest-author-robbie-cheadle-dick-turpin/

A small selection of books by RobbieCheadle, Buy: https://www.amazon.com/Robbie-Cheadle/e/B01N9J62GQ Blog: https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/Goodreads: Robbie Goodreads

A small selection of books by Sue Vincent, Buy: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sue-Vincent/e/B00F2L730W – Blog: http://scvincent.com/  – Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6551588.Sue_Vincent

Finally today author James J. Cudney with a post on the subject of authors reviewing each other’s work… and also a request for your views on the subject.  I have read two of James’s books and have the rest on my TBR.. he had reviewed several of mine and I appreciate the perspective that another author brings to a review. I can recommend that you take him up on his author for this reciprocal support.

AUTHORS: Have You Read and Reviewed One of My Books?, by James J. Cudney

I ask this question specifically to authors because I want to be sure I’ve acknowledged and thanked any author who has taken the time to read and review one or more of my books. As a writer, part of my job is to see what other people think of my books. I check Goodreads, Amazon, BookBub, blogs, and social media daily to see any new reviews from any type of reader. If I’ve received a positive review, I always “like” it on the tool where the review was published. I rarely comment unless it’s on a blog post, as that’s more interactive to me. If I’ve received a bad review, I will cry. Okay, that’s not true… but it will make my day a bit worse. And I won’t like it. I’d rather the negative reviewer have an open mind and message me to discuss what they didn’t like.

ACTION ITEM: If there is an author who has reviewed my work, I would like to return the kind gesture. I generally use Goodreads to find reviews from authors, then pick one of his or her books to read and review within the next month. I can’t search every site or tool, so that’s what I use as my starting point to check for them. As of August 31st, I believe I’ve located all the reviews (not just those with a rating) and reciprocated by reading some of that author’s books too. If you’re an author, and you’ve reviewed my book, and I haven’t acknowledged it or reviewed one of yours, please let me know by responding to this post or privately. It’s accidental, and I want to be sure we’re supporting one another. Let me know, and I’ll correct it.

Head over and chat to James about reviewing each other’s work and also if you have reviewed one of James’s books, he would like to return the favour.. so opportunites for everyone.: https://thisismytruthnow.com/2019/09/03/authors-reviewing-each-others-books-have-you-read-my-work-yet

A small selection of James’s books  Buy: https://www.amazon.com/James-J.-Cudney/e/B076B6PB3M Website/Blog: https://thisismytruthnow.com/Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17128817.James_J_Cudney

Thanks for dropping in today and I hope that you will head over to read the posts in full – Until next time.. Sally

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Human in Every Sense of the Word – A Sense of Pain by Robbie Cheadle


Welcome to the Sunday Interview- Human in every sense of the word.

As humans there are five main senses that we rely on to navigate through this world.  And there is one that we all possess but do not necessarily use all the time…

Sight, Hearing, Touch, Taste, Smell….Sixth Sense.

You can choose to write about one sense or all of them, including that elusive sixth sense we have clung on to from the early days of man. 

If you would like to participate then here are the details along with my take on senses: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/05/23/smorgasbord-blog-magazine-new-sunday-interview-series-human-in-every-sense-of-the-word-starting-sunday-june-30th-2019/

This week my guest is Robbie Cheadle who with her son Michael has created a wonderful series of stories and cookbooks for children. In addition Robbie shows her versatility as a writer by publishing poetry, memoir based fiction and an upcoming YA paranormal novel in September.

Today Robbie shares every mother’s nightmare, when your child is diagnosed with a life-threatening disease and you have to put your trust and their lives in the hands of someone else.

A Sense of Pain by Robbie Cheadle

She pulled herself up, using the side of the large, shell-shaped bath as a lever. Water ran down her face from her soaked hair and her clammy and wet clothes clung to her body. Her little boy stared at her with round, scared eyes. She could imagine his thoughts: What are you doing, Mummy?

“I’m just going to quickly change my clothes, love.” Backing out of the bathroom, she dashed into her bedroom and stripped of her soggy jeans and sweatshirt. Her hands trembled as she pulled on dry pants and a long-sleeved top. It was summer so she shouldn’t be cold, but she was.

Heading back into the bathroom, she pulled his thick and fluffy towel from the rail and, lifting him out of the bath, wrapped him in its warm depths. She cuddled the child to her heart, fighting back the tears that threatened to spill from her eyes. If she started crying, she didn’t think she would be able to stop. She would descend into a hurting and traumatised animal.

Carrying him out of the bathroom, she stood him on the carpet in front of his cupboard and slipped his pyjamas onto his small, four-year old body. He looked so perfect with his mop of blonde curls, deep, blue eyes and sweet smile. Can there really be a tumour growing inside his stomach? Maybe it will be benign. We can’t know until they do the operation tomorrow. Tomorrow … such a long time to wait.

Holding out her hand towards him, she started moving towards the passage that led to the kitchen. He took it and followed her. Her mother, father and sister were gathered around the large, wooden table; all trying to give her support during this terrible time.

Plastering a smile onto her face, she stepped into the kitchen. The strong aroma of chicken curry reached her nostrils making her stomach clench into a tight and churning ball. There was no way she would be able to eat anything, the thought made her feel like vomiting. Her mother was worried about her. “You have to eat and keep your strength up. It won’t help him if you collapse.” She knew this was true but the knot of horror in her stomach was relentless and would not let more than a few mouthfuls of food into her body.

Dark purple smudges beneath her tired eyes told them that she wasn’t sleeping. Who could sleep at a time like this?

The paediatrician had phoned and asked her and her husband to come into her office. They had sat there together while she told them that Michael had a tumour in his stomach. It was the reason for the chronic stomach pain he was experiencing. She told them that she had arranged for their son to be admitted into hospital on Monday and for a special paediatric surgeon to remove the tumour and send it for biopsy. The paediatrician had delivered Michael. She had treated him through his many asthma induced illnesses. She offered them her blood if a transfusion was needed.

The weekend crawled passed. At 7.30 A.M. on Monday morning she unstrapped Michael from his car seat and led him into the hospital. Relief that the operation was imminent, mixed with anxiety and fear at the possible outcome. What will today bring?

The outcome: Michael was diagnosed with a non-malignant tumour which had wrapped itself around the main artery in his stomach. The paediatric surgeon was only able to remove half of the tumour as the risks of further removal were too high. Dr Loveland came out of theatre after the operation and told us that he thought the tumour was non-malignant. The biopsy result that came on Friday that week, confirmed his initial view.

©Robbie Cheadle 2019

A selection of books by Robbie Cheadle

One of the recent reviews for While the Bombs Fell

An interesting compilation of memories of a young girl during wartime in Britain. The author relays her mother, Elsie’s memoirs of what transpired in her day-to-day life growing up during WWll.

We see life through the eyes of Elsie who didn’t know what was going on around her with the war because of her young age. All she knew was she was cold and hungry and loved to have some sweets at Christmas time. She remembers the fun she had with her siblings and curling up in bed together on cold nights to keep warm. She remembers helping her mother make Christmas pudding and receiving a beautiful doll as a Christmas present.

Elsie lived on a farm with cows and chickens and other animals around. She was fortunate to have eggs and milk daily. Others were not as fortunate. She didn’t realize the hardships caused by war but she and her family adjusted and were resilient. Her father was a farmer who delivered milk daily while her mother kept the home clean and children fed and cared for even if they had very little to eat at times.

This story displays the tenacity, strength, courage and resourcefulness of this generation of people, known as the greatest generation of all times. We, today, could not do what these amazing people did to survive. We are too spoiled and cosseted in our ways and life styles. We can’t imagine a time where war came to our doorstep. Thank God for that.

A lovely story for young adults to read in order to learn about life during the toughest of times. The collection of recipes at the end of the book is a nice touch to further display what these truly courageous and resilient people had to use daily to survive.

Read all the reviews and buy the books:https://www.amazon.com/Robbie-Cheadle/e/B01N9J62GQ

And on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Robbie-Cheadle/e/B01N9J62GQ

Read more reviews and follow Robbie on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15584446.Robbie_Cheadle

About Robbie Cheadle

Robbie, short for Roberta, is an author with five published children’s picture books in the Sir Chocolate books series for children aged 2 to 9 years old (co-authored with her son, Michael Cheadle), one published middle grade book in the Silly Willy series and one published preteen/young adult fictionalised biography about her mother’s life as a young girl growing up in an English town in Suffolk during World War II called While the Bombs Fell (co-authored with her mother, Elsie Hancy Eaton). All of Robbie’s children’s book are written under Robbie Cheadle and are published by TSL Publications. Robbie has recently branched into adult horror and supernatural writing and, in order to clearly differential her children’s books from her adult writing, these will be published under Roberta Eaton Cheadle. Robbie has two short stories in the horror/supernatural genre included in Dark Visions, a collection of 34 short stories by 27 different authors and edited by award winning author, Dan Alatorre. These short stories are published under Robbie Cheadle.

I have been drawn to the horror and supernatural genres of books all my life. At the age of ten years old I embarked on reading Stephen King’s books including The Shining and Salem’s Lot. These books scared me so much I had to put them aside by 6P.M. in the evening in order to get a good night’s sleep but they also fascinated me. I subsequently worked my way through all of Stephen King’s earlier books as well as those of Dean R. Koontz.

I have read a large number of classics, in particular, I enjoy Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, Charles Dickens and the works of the Bronte sisters.

I am hugely interested in the history of the United Kingdom as well as the mythology and tales of the paranormal that are abundant on this intriguing European island.

Connect to Robbie Cheadle

Website/Blog Roberta Writes: https://robertawrites235681907.wordpress.com/
Blog: https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/
Website: https://bakeandwrite.co.za/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SirChocolateBooks/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/bakeandwrite

My thanks to Robbie for sharing what must have been a challenging and heartrending time for the family, thankfully with a positive outcome.

If you would like to participate then here are the details along with my take on senses: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/05/23/smorgasbord-blog-magazine-new-sunday-interview-series-human-in-every-sense-of-the-word-starting-sunday-june-30th-2019/

Smorgasbord Posts from Your Archives – #PotLuck – Sue Vincent hosts Robbie Cheadle 2018 – Living Lore: A nursery rhyme with an interesting history


Welcome to the series of Posts from Your Archives, where bloggers put their trust in me. In this series, I dive into a blogger’s archives and select four posts to share here to my audience.

If you would like to know how it works here is the original post: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/28/smorgasbord-posts-from-your-archives-newseries-pot-luck-and-do-you-trust-me/

This is the final post from the archives of a regular contributor to the series and wonderful supporter of us all, apart from challenging us each week with photo and Haiku prompts Sue Vincent wanders the land..in search of the ancient and modern to share with us. Sue always welcomes guest writers with open arms and here is one from 2018 from another popular blogger and author, Robbie Cheadle.

Sue Vincent hosts Robbie Cheadle 2018 – Living Lore: A nursery rhyme with an interesting history

Are you familiar with this nursery rhyme?

Now he sings of Jackey Horner

Sitting in the Chimney-Corner

Eating of a Christmas pye,

Putting in his thumb, Oh fie!

Putting in, Oh fie, his Thumb,

Pulling out, Oh strange! A Plum.

Perhaps you know a more modern version that goes like this:

Little Jack Horner

Sat in the corner,

Eating his (a) Christmas pie;

He put in his thumb,

And pulled out a plum,

And said, “What a good boy am I!

I was fascinated to discover recently that the original version of this nursery rhyme is thought to be about a man named Thomas Horner. Thomas was the steward to Richard Whiting, the last Abbot of Glastonbury. Legend has it that prior to the destruction of the Abbey in September 1539, Richard Whiting sent Thomas Horner to London with an enormous Christmas pie. The pie, a gift for the King, contained the deeds to a number of manor houses and were a last ditch attempt by the Abbot to prevent the nationalisation of Glastonbury by the Crown. Horner is said to have opened the pie and extracted the deed to the manor of Mells in Summerset which he kept for himself. Horner’s descendants have refuted this myth and there are records to support their claim that Horner bought and paid for the manor.

Richard Whiting was arrested on the orders of Thomas Cromwell on 19 September 1539. The Abbey was stripped of its valuables and Richard Whiting was hanged, drawn and quartered as a traitor on 15 November 1939.

The Abbey is now a ruin but it is still visited by 100 000 pilgrims a year. The Abbot’s Kitchen which served the Abbey survived the destruction and is considered to be one of the best preserved medieval kitchen in Europe.

About Robbie Cheadle

Robbie, short for Roberta, is an author with five published children’s picture books in the Sir Chocolate books series for children aged 2 to 9 years old (co-authored with her son, Michael Cheadle), one published middle grade book in the Silly Willy series and one published preteen/young adult fictionalised biography about her mother’s life as a young girl growing up in an English town in Suffolk during World War II called While the Bombs Fell (co-authored with her mother, Elsie Hancy Eaton). All of Robbie’s children’s book are written under Robbie Cheadle and are published by TSL Publications. Robbie has recently branched into adult horror and supernatural writing and, in order to clearly differential her children’s books from her adult writing, these will be published under Roberta Eaton Cheadle. Robbie has two short stories in the horror/supernatural genre included in Dark Visions, a collection of 34 short stories by 27 different authors and edited by award winning author, Dan Alatorre. These short stories are published under Robbie Cheadle.

I have been drawn to the horror and supernatural genres of books all my life. At the age of ten years old I embarked on reading Stephen King’s books including The Shining and Salem’s Lot. These books scared me so much I had to put them aside by 6P.M. in the evening in order to get a good night’s sleep but they also fascinated me. I subsequently worked my way through all of Stephen King’s earlier books as well as those of Dean R. Koontz.

I have read a large number of classics, in particular, I enjoy Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, Charles Dickens and the works of the Bronte sisters.

I am hugely interested in the history of the United Kingdom as well as the mythology and tales of the paranormal that are abundant on this intriguing European island.

ael with filming and editing their YouTube videos and editing their books.

A selection of books by Robbie Cheadle

Find and follow Robbie

Robbie’s Inspiration Blog      Goodreads    Facebook    YouTube

Amazon author page   Twitter: @bakeandwrite

© Sue Vincent 2018

About Sue Vincent

Sue Vincent is a Yorkshire born writer, esoteric teacher and Director of The Silent Eye. She has been immersed in the Mysteries all her life. Sue maintains a popular blog and is co-author of The Mystical Hexagram with Dr G.M.Vasey. Sue lives in Buckinghamshire, having been stranded there some years ago due to an accident with a blindfold, a pin and a map. She has a lasting love-affair with the landscape of Albion, the hidden country of the heart. She is currently owned by a small dog who also writes at http://scvincent.com/

The Silent Eye School of Consciousness is a modern Mystery School that seeks to allow its students to find the inherent magic in living and being. With students around the world the School offers a fully supervised and practical correspondence course that explores the self through guided inner journeys and daily exercises. It also offers workshops that combine sacred drama, lectures and informal gatherings to bring the teachings to life in a vivid and exciting format. The Silent Eye operates on a not-for-profit basis. Full details of the School may be found on the official website, http://www.thesilenteye.co.uk.

A selection of books by Sue Vincent and Stuart France

One of the recent reviews for Sword of Destiny

An amputation of the soul
So dark, so final, yet I understand it.
I love the way you became a priest
Absolving Merlin of the sins written about him
None of which I believed
Arthurs birth is better told without the sting of rape
Robed in rainbows, like moonlight on water, FAB
I didn’t so much read this book as eat my way through it…

Read the reviews and buy the books from the following links: UKUSAFranceGermany

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

Connect to Sue

Blog: http://scvincent.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/scvincent
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/S-C-Vincent/17967259931?ref=hl
Silent Eye Website: http://thesilenteye.co.uk/
Website (books) : http://www.franceandvincent.com/
Silent Eye Authors FB: https://www.facebook.com/silenteyeauthors?ref=hl

My thanks to Sue for permitting me to browse her archives and share some with you…Sally.

 

Smorgasbord Posts from your Archives – #Potluck – Flash Fiction – Lavender not forever by Robbie Cheadle


Welcome to the new series of Posts from Your Archives, where bloggers put their trust in me. In this series, I dive into a blogger’s archives and select four posts to share here to my audience.

If you would like to know how it works here is the original post: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/28/smorgasbord-posts-from-your-archives-newseries-pot-luck-and-do-you-trust-me/

Today we begin the series of posts from Robbie Cheadle who has two blogs that I can select from.  Robbie participates in a number of flash fiction and poetry challenges and for her posts from Roberta Writes I have chosen some flash fiction written in response to Sue Vincent’s weekly photograph challenge which you can find here: https://scvincent.com/2019/01/31/thursday-photo-prompt-fragrant-writephoto/

Lavender not forever by Robbie Cheadle

The strong fragrance reminded her of her grandmother. The garden overflowed with lavender bushes, their purple flowers surrounded by bees. They moved lithely from one flower head to another, foraging the nectar efficiently to take back to their hives. Nettie had read somewhere that the long-tongued bumble bees preferred lavender flowers to the short-tongued honey bees. The long tubes of the lavender flowers made them less attractive to the honey bees who had to stick their whole head inside the tube in order to extract the nectar. This resulted in unnecessary delays to their nectar gathering process so they preferred other types of flowers.

Lavender was her grandmother’s favourite flower. Nettie hated lavender nearly as much as she hated bees.

She had become the owner of the cottage a few days ago when the transfer finally went through. Her grandmother had left it to her when she had died a few months ago, at the incredible age of ninety six years old.

Of course, Nettie deserved to own the cottage as she had looked after her ailing grandmother for years. Towards the end of her life, her grandmother had become like the old man of the sea.

Her mind liked this analogy. The old man of the sea in the Sinbad tales tricks kind hearted travelers into helping him cross a stream by riding on their shoulders. Once across, the old man would not release his grip and the traveler became his slave. The old man made his victims carry him all over the island, never allowing them to stop and rest. Eventually, the victim would die of this miserable treatment. That is exactly how Nettie had felt. A reluctant and badly treated slave who ran around doing her grandmother’s bidding all day long and sometimes half the night too.

The lavender has got to go, she thought.

In her high heels and short skirt, Nettie leaned forward and started wrenching the lavender out of the ground by its roots. She threw the bushes into a pile on the lawn. She dragged more and more bushes out of the reluctant earth. Red welts marked her palms as the lavender bushes resisted her vigorous tugs but she didn’t care. Each bush seemed to represent some insult or infringement on her personal time and space by the crazy old bat.

Forty-five minutes later, her fine blouse clinging to her sweaty body and her hair lank and dusty, her vengeance inspired spree of destruction ended. She surveyed the damage and a small smile played across her narrow lips. The lavender bushes lay in a few untidy heaps ready to be dragged to the bonfire pile.

Tomorrow she would get the gardener to chop the bushes up into pieces. She would plant something she liked in their place.

Roses, that’s what I’ll plant.

Nettie loved roses, with their delicate coloured petals and beautiful smell. She would plant roses in every colour she could find. Her grandmother hated roses.

©Robbie Cheadle

A selection of books by Robbie Cheadle

One of the recent reviews for Sir Chocolate and the Fondant Five Story and Cookbook

Robbie Cheadle’s Sir Chocolate and the Fondant Five story and cookbook (2019) is the next in the author’s delightful series of books that blend children’s stories with themed original recipes. This one is a clever story poem about the disappearance of zoo animals and how Sir Chocolate must figure out what happened.

“One day Sir Chocolate arrived, and not a sound could hear, he called long and loud, but no animals did appear. The animals had vanished, the zoo was empty and still,”

“The monkey is naughty, he likes to have fun, he plays tricks on the others, then away he does run.”

The story is written in the format of a poem and includes great photographs that help readers visualize the action. At the completion of the story, there is a cute poem to introduce an original collection of animal-themed recipes children can complete with their parents. Some of the recipes are:

* Sir Chocolate peppermint caramel pudding
* Cheetah Cheese scones
* Rino Soetkoekies

I have bought several of these books because I love the idea of blending a story with cooking and inspiring kids and parents to spend time together. I also love that Robbie writes these books with her son, Michael, each doing their part in writing, cooking, and photographing. Overall, this is another excellent book in a clever collection that not only entertains but brings parents and kids together.

Read all the reviews and buy the books:https://www.amazon.com/Robbie-Cheadle/e/B01N9J62GQ

And on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Robbie-Cheadle/e/B01N9J62GQ

Read more reviews and follow Robbie on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15584446.Robbie_Cheadle

About Robbie Cheadle

Robbie, short for Roberta, is an author with five published children’s picture books in the Sir Chocolate books series for children aged 2 to 9 years old (co-authored with her son, Michael Cheadle), one published middle grade book in the Silly Willy series and one published preteen/young adult fictionalised biography about her mother’s life as a young girl growing up in an English town in Suffolk during World War II called While the Bombs Fell (co-authored with her mother, Elsie Hancy Eaton). All of Robbie’s children’s book are written under Robbie Cheadle and are published by TSL Publications. Robbie has recently branched into adult horror and supernatural writing and, in order to clearly differential her children’s books from her adult writing, these will be published under Roberta Eaton Cheadle. Robbie has two short stories in the horror/supernatural genre included in Dark Visions, a collection of 34 short stories by 27 different authors and edited by award winning author, Dan Alatorre. These short stories are published under Robbie Cheadle.

I have been drawn to the horror and supernatural genres of books all my life. At the age of ten years old I embarked on reading Stephen King’s books including The Shining and Salem’s Lot. These books scared me so much I had to put them aside by 6P.M. in the evening in order to get a good night’s sleep but they also fascinated me. I subsequently worked my way through all of Stephen King’s earlier books as well as those of Dean R. Koontz.

I have read a large number of classics, in particular, I enjoy Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, Charles Dickens and the works of the Bronte sisters.

I am hugely interested in the history of the United Kingdom as well as the mythology and tales of the paranormal that are abundant on this intriguing European island.

Connect to Robbie Cheadle

Website/Blog Roberta Writes: https://robertawrites235681907.wordpress.com/
Blog: https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/
Website: https://bakeandwrite.co.za/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SirChocolateBooks/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/bakeandwrite

Thanks to Robbie for allowing me to browse through her archives to select some posts to share with you.. more over the next three Mondays.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Weekly Round Up – Constantine the Great, a horde of talented authors, canine petty thiefs and some jokes


Welcome to this week’s round up of posts on Smorgasbord that you might have missed.

After the glorious Easter weather the storm fronts came racing in and I am very grateful that the small plants that went into the pots last weekend have survived and thrived. I am amazed as they had such shallow roots and yet most have managed to also flower despite the high winds and torrential rain. Miracles really.

I was in Gorey today to get some food shopping done and on the way into town is a large roundabout which has recently be revamped by its sponsor. They had planted about five mature conifers about 5 foot tall in a circle and whilst my little petunias weathered the storm and bloomed… three of these conifers are now on their sides. Obviously not planted deep enough but a lesson on how the mighty fall and the meek might just inherit the earth.

I am waxing lyrical now so had better get on with business. 

The first thing I want to share is the new series of Posts from Your Archives and if you missed the post this morning here are the details.

Since this series began in January 2018 there have been over 400 Posts from Your Archives where bloggers have taken the opportunity to share posts to a new audience… mine.

The topics have ranged from travel, childhood, recipes, history and the most recent series was on any aspect about family.

Many of the posts were written at the start of a blogger’s experience and perhaps there were not as many followers at the time. Such a shame not to re-share all the hard work that went into the post in the first place.

It is an opportunity to showcase your writing skill to my readers and also to share on my social media. Which combined is around the 40,000 mark. If you are an author your books will be mentioned too, along with their buy links and your other social media contacts.

So what is different about this series?

This time, rather than you send me four links to posts from your archives, all I need you to do is give me permission to dive in myself and find four posts to share here on Smorgasbord.

Rather than a set topic, I will select posts at random across a number of subjects from the time you began blogging up to the present day.

If you are an author I am sure you will have a page on your blog with the details, and an ‘about page’ with your profile and social media links (always a good idea anyway). I will get everything that I need.

Copyright is yours and I will ©Your name on every post… and you will be named as the author in the URL and subject line.

Here are a few examples so you can see how a post will appear.

Darlene Foster shares the devastation caused by wildfires that destroyed old family homesteads in Canada.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/03/19/smorgasbord-posts-from-your-archives-what-was-lost-in-the-fire-by-darlene-foster/

Robbie Cheadle shares a wonderful post about her wedding.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/03/14/smorgasbord-posts-from-your-archives-family-contrasting-colours-a-poem-for-my-wedding-anniversary-by-robbie-cheadle/

Sue Vincent shares the wonderful dogs who have been part of her life since childhood and today.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/02/23/smorgasbord-posts-from-your-archives-a-family-of-dogs-by-sue-vincent/

So do you trust me enough to delve into your archives and select some posts to share here on Smorgasbord?

All I need is your name in the comments here or in the original post and I will do the rest.

Time to share the posts from the week…slightly fewer than usual as I posted last week’s round up on Monday.

I thought over the weekend I would share a two part series from Paul Andruss posted originally in November 2017…As with any legend, there is usually some variations on the origins and plenty of embellishments by later historians, that need to be resolved. Paul takes on the task and unravels the stories to reveal the probable truth behind Constantine the Great, the first Christian Emperor.. and his mother Helena.

Part  One

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/27/smorgasbord-posts-from-my-archives-the-thirteenth-apostle-and-his-mum-by-paul-andruss/

Part Two

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/28/smorgasbord-posts-from-my-archives-the-thirteenth-apostle-constantine-the-great-part-two-by-paul-andruss/

They were not really the good old days, especially for women and children, particularly the babies. Robbie Cheadle shares the truly terrible tale of Amelia Dyer…

Amelia Dyer

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/23/smorgasbord-blog-magazine-guest-writer-baby-farming-in-the-late-victorian-era-britain-and-amelia-dyer-by-robbie-cheadle/

Susanne Swanson turned her blog over to her cat Benji who shared an experience with a mouse…

20161023_19371322

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/26/smorgasbord-posts-from-your-archives-the-mouse-had-no-chance-by-susanne-swanson/

Personal Stuff

This week on The R’s of Life… Reason.. have we lost all of us, or does our education system let millions down by not providing them with the tools to make informed decisions.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/24/smorgasbord-something-to-think-about-the-rs-of-life-survival-in-the-modern-world-reason-by-sally-cronin/

This week our friend’s cat goes missing and I grow tomatoes…Houston 1986

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/25/smorgasbord-letters-from-america-houston-april-1986-lost-cats-and-tomatoes/

My response to This week’s Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge by Charli Mills is about ‘exhaustion‘… Tramp’s Heartbreak…

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/27/smorgasbord-short-stories-carrot-ranch-flash-fiction-tramps-heartbreak-by-sally-cronin/

Special Feature – the final contributors to Understanding An Anthology of True and Significant life events.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/24/smorgasbord-special-feature-understanding-an-anthology-of-true-and-significant-life-events-contributors-clive-pilcher-abbie-johnson-taylor-stevie-turner-and-beem-weeks/

New Book on the Shelves.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/25/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore-new-book-on-the-shelves-pre-order-devil-in-the-wind-voices-from-the-2009-black-saturday-bushfires-poetry-anthology-book-2by-frank-prem/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/26/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore-new-book-on-the-shelves-crime-thriller-irmas-endgame-by-paulette-mahurin/

Author Update #Reviews

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/23/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore-author-update-jack-eason-jack-eason-m-j-mallon-bette-a-stevens-and-olga-nunez-miret/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/26/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore-author-update-reviews-hugh-w-roberts-judith-barrow-and-linda-g-hill/

The truth is you cannot have your cake and eat it and lose weight.  If you want to enjoy a varied and healthy weight loss you need to get moving.. even if it is a walk around the block each day… and flexibility is key.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/27/smorgasbord-health-column-size-matters-the-sequel-getting-moving-and-shifting-the-pounds-by-sally-cronin/

There are a great many myths about food and one of those foods is salt. The fact is we are taking in far too much sodium in industrially produced foods, 75%… and not enough of the natural salt that we need.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/24/smorgasbord-blog-magazine-the-health-column-food-myths-do-you-have-enough-salt-in-your-diet-overweight-sugar-cravings/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/23/smorgasbord-laughter-lines-guest-comedian-d-g-kaye-and-a-joke-from-my-archives-8/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/04/25/smorgasbord-laughter-lines-guest-comedian-d-g-kaye-and-a-joke-from-my-archives-9/

Thank you very much for dropping by and your support…have a great week. Hope to see you here again soon…thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Guest Writer – Baby farming in the late-Victorian Era Britain and Amelia Dyer by Robbie Cheadle


They were not really the good old days, especially for women and children, particularly the babies. Robbie Cheadle shares the truly terrible tale of Amelia Dyer……

Baby farming in the late-Victorian Era Britain and Amelia Dyer by Robbie Cheadle

What is baby farming?

Baby farming during late-Victorian Era Britain was the practice whereby individuals acted as adoption or fostering agents for children and infants in return for either an up-front payment or monthly payments from the mother.

Although baby farmers were supposed to provide care for the children they took into their custody, the name developed due to the fact this was rarely the case and improper treatment of the children frequently occurred.

A related business was the practice of taking in young expectant women and caring for them until they gave birth. Many of these women subsequently left their unwanted babies after the birth to be looked after as “nurse children”.

Unscrupulous baby farmers often starved the babies in their care, either to save money or to hasten their deaths. Alcohol and/or opiates, particularly Godfrey’s Cordial also known as Mother’s Friend, was administered to noisy and troublesome babies in order to sedate them. Such babies usually died of starvation and severe malnutrition as the opium made them disinclined for food.

Why did the practice of baby farming come about?

In 1834 the poor Law Amendment Act was introduced in Britain which removed any financial obligation from the fathers of illegitimate children. This left unmarried mothers in a dire financial position as single parenthood and illegitimacy were stigmatized by the society of the time.

Amelia Dyer

Amelia Dyer is credited with being one of the most prolific murderers in British history. Dyer was hanged in 1896 for the murder of a baby girl but there was little doubt at the time that she was responsible for many more infant and child deaths.

Amelia Dyer turned to baby farming following the death of her husband, George Thomas. George was thirty-five years older than Amelia and the couple had a daughter together before he died, leaving Amelia a single mother to a newborn baby.

Amelia started advertising in local newspapers, claiming to be a respectable married woman who would provide a safe and loving home for a child. Initially, Amelia allowed the babies to die of neglect and starvation, which involved the use of Mother’s Friend, but eventually she tired of waiting for the children to die and started murdering them soon after she received them. She strangled them with a length of white edging tape. She is later quoted as saying about the white tape “[that] was how you could tell it was one of mine.”

It is estimated that Amelia Dyer murdered over 400 babies and children, making her Britain’s most prolific female serial killer. She was also known by the name of “angel maker” and the “Ogress of Reading.”

What does this have to do with my writing?

My main character, Margaret, in my new horror/supernatural young adult book due to be published in early September makes a visit to Hell. While there she comes across several famous historical mass murderers as well as perpetrators of other crimes. I wanted the lady who looked after Margaret during her time in Hell to be sufficiently well know that most readers would recognize her. A Google search of famous British female serial killers led me immediately to Amelia Dyer.

I did now about the practice of baby farming in Victorian England due to my numerous readings of Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens. In this book, Oliver spends his early years in a baby farm before being removed to the workhouse by Mr Bumble.

Amelia caught my fancy and so I decided she would be Margaret’s housekeeper in Through the Nethergate. She does suffer some rather horrible punishments for her sins in my version of Hell. In order to understand her character, I wrote an entire story about her fascinating history and this became my story Justice is Never Served which is one of three short stories I submitted for the anthology, Death Among Us.

Writing Amelia’s story required extensive research as she is a real character so the underlying facts must be correct. I read up on Amelia Dyer on about fifteen different historical websites and I also read some historical and recent newspaper articles about her life and case. It took me about four days to check and cross-check all the information and then I set about turning it into a story with a supernatural twist.

Who knew death could be so eclectic? Relish this mesmerizing murder mystery mash-up of short stories.

The stories include the 2019 SIA Award-Winning Murder Mystery Short Story ‘The Rose Slayer.’

Murder and mystery have been the staple of literature and films for years. This anthology of short stories will thrill and entertain you. Some will also make you laugh out loud. Others will stop and make you think.

Think of this murder mystery short story anthology as a book version of appetizers or starters, hors d’oeuvre, meze, or antipasti. It can be read as fillers between books or, as is the case in some countries, as a bookish meze – in its own right.

These stories come from an international cast of authors; some with bestselling books, others are emerging or new talents. Their roots, cultures, and life experiences are as diverse as their writing styles.

But one thing binds them together: they know how to tell a story.

There’s murder mystery styles and locations to suit all tastes: detective fiction, serial killers, scifi, histfic, Paris, LA, England, the Caribbean, The Great Lakes, and more in an exquisite exposition of the art of short story telling.

The eleven authors who have contributed to the anthology are:

• Stephen Bentley
• Greg Alldredge
• Kelly Artieri
• Brenda Mohammed
• L. Lee Kane
• Michael Spinelli
• Sansriti Johri
• Robbie Cheadle
• Kay Castaneda
• Justin Bauer
• Aly Locatelli

Each author introduces his or her stories and the theme that lies behind them.By the time you finish the book, you will agree the result is a mesmerizing murder mystery mash-up

Link to pre-order Death Among Us on Amazon 99c: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07QK3GNNX

And on Amazon UK 99p: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Death-Among-Us-Anthology-Mystery-ebook/dp/B07QK3GNNX/

About Robbie Cheadle

Robbie, short for Roberta, is an author with five published children’s picture books in the Sir Chocolate books series for children aged 2 to 9 years old (co-authored with her son, Michael Cheadle), one published middle grade book in the Silly Willy series and one published preteen/young adult fictionalised biography about her mother’s life as a young girl growing up in an English town in Suffolk during World War II called While the Bombs Fell (co-authored with her mother, Elsie Hancy Eaton). All of Robbie’s children’s book are written under Robbie Cheadle and are published by TSL Publications. Robbie has recently branched into adult horror and supernatural writing and, in order to clearly differential her children’s books from her adult writing, these will be published under Roberta Eaton Cheadle. Robbie has two short stories in the horror/supernatural genre included in Dark Visions, a collection of 34 short stories by 27 different authors and edited by award winning author, Dan Alatorre. These short stories are published under Robbie Cheadle.

I have been drawn to the horror and supernatural genres of books all my life. At the age of ten years old I embarked on reading Stephen King’s books including The Shining and Salem’s Lot. These books scared me so much I had to put them aside by 6P.M. in the evening in order to get a good night’s sleep but they also fascinated me. I subsequently worked my way through all of Stephen King’s earlier books as well as those of Dean R. Koontz.

I have read a large number of classics, in particular, I enjoy Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, Charles Dickens and the works of the Bronte sisters.

I am hugely interested in the history of the United Kingdom as well as the mythology and tales of the paranormal that are abundant on this intriguing European island.

A selection of books by Robbie Cheadle

One of the recent reviews for Sir Chocolate and the Fondant Five Story and Cookbook

Robbie Cheadle’s Sir Chocolate and the Fondant Five story and cookbook (2019) is the next in the author’s delightful series of books that blend children’s stories with themed original recipes. This one is a clever story poem about the disappearance of zoo animals and how Sir Chocolate must figure out what happened.

“One day Sir Chocolate arrived, and not a sound could hear, he called long and loud, but no animals did appear. The animals had vanished, the zoo was empty and still,”

“The monkey is naughty, he likes to have fun, he plays tricks on the others, then away he does run.”

The story is written in the format of a poem and includes great photographs that help readers visualize the action. At the completion of the story, there is a cute poem to introduce an original collection of animal-themed recipes children can complete with their parents. Some of the recipes are:

* Sir Chocolate peppermint caramel pudding
* Cheetah Cheese scones
* Rino Soetkoekies

I have bought several of these books because I love the idea of blending a story with cooking and inspiring kids and parents to spend time together. I also love that Robbie writes these books with her son, Michael, each doing their part in writing, cooking, and photographing. Overall, this is another excellent book in a clever collection that not only entertains but brings parents and kids together.

Read all the reviews and buy the books:https://www.amazon.com/Robbie-Cheadle/e/B01N9J62GQ

And on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Robbie-Cheadle/e/B01N9J62GQ

Read more reviews and follow Robbie on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15584446.Robbie_Cheadle

Other places to connect to Robbie Cheadle

Website/Blog Roberta Writes: https://robertawrites235681907.wordpress.com/
Blog: https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/
Website: https://bakeandwrite.co.za/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SirChocolateBooks/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/bakeandwrite

Thank you for visiting and reading this fascinating post by Robbie Cheadle… Quite an extraordinary story of evil at a time when women and babies were already so vulnerable.