Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Buy a Book for Christmas #African Adventure, #Crime #History #Scifi with Lucinda E. Clarke, Sue Coletta, Jack Eason and David R. Grigg


Welcome to another Cafe and Bookstore Christmas promotion with a selection of books that would make great gifts for family and friends.. not to mention yourself.

The first author with books in a series that would make wonderful gifts is from Lucinda E. Clarke and I am featuring the first in her series Amie: African Adventure.

About the Book

Amie was just an average girl, living in her home town close to friends and family. She was happily married and she had her future all planned out. They would have two adorable children, while she made award winning programmes for television. Until the day her husband announced he was being sent to live and work in an African country she had never heard of. When she came to the notice of a Colonel in the Government, it made life very complicated, and from there things started to escalate from bad to worse. If Amie could have seen that one day she would be totally lost, fighting for her life, and enduring untold horrors, she would never have stepped foot on that plane

One of the recent reviews for the book

Having lived as an expat myself, I enjoyed the descriptions of the culture shock experienced by the main character in this story. To some it could sound a little far fetched, but it was more like a series of ‘Oh Yeah’ moments for me. When the main character finds herself transferred across the world with no real enthusiasm, and even less preparation, the culture shock is extreme. There is a saying among expats in my part of the world… “Dorothy, you aint in Kansas no more!!”

Just as she is starting to get a grip on her new life, the situation goes from culture shock to full on nightmare. She is forced to rely on her wits, her new understanding of the world, and no small amount of luck to survive. The question is whether the lessons she has learned and the confidence she has gained will be enough to get her through. The writing style is easy to read and the author appears to have good knowledge of the culture and environment she is writing about. You might want to read this book as a simple adventure story, or as an insight into culture shock and the need to understand other cultures, and how easily you can get caught out by them.

Read the reviews and buy the book : https://www.amazon.com/Amie-African-Adventure-Lucinda-Clarke/dp/1500546992

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Amie-African-Adventure-Lucinda-Clarke-ebook/dp/B00LWFIO5K/

A selection of other books in the series and stand alone novels by Lucinda E. Clarke

Read the reviews and buy all the books: https://www.amazon.com/Lucinda-E-Clarke/e/B00FDWB914

And on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Lucinda-E-Clarke/e/B00FDWB914

Read more reviews and follow Lucinda on Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7996778.Lucinda_E_Clarke

Connect to Lucinda via her website: http://lucindaeclarkeauthor.com

Now one of the series from crime writer Sue Coletta who also shares her secrets in non-fiction writing guides. Marred: Grafton County Series Book 1. There are plenty of books by Sue to satisfy the most blood thirsty crime enthusiasts in your family.

About Marred

When a serial killer breaks into the home of bestselling author, Sage Quintano, she barely escapes with her life. Her husband, Niko, a homicide detective, insists they move to rural New Hampshire, where he accepts a position as Grafton County Sheriff. Sage buries secrets from that night—secrets she swears to take to her deathbed.

Three years of anguish and painful memories pass, and a grisly murder case lands on Niko’s desk. A strange caller begins tormenting Sage—she can’t outrun the past.

When Sage’s twin sister suddenly goes missing, Sage searches Niko’s case files and discovers similarities to the Boston killer. A sadistic psychopath is preying on innocent women, marring their bodies in unspeakable ways. And now, he has her sister.

Cryptic clues. Hidden messages. Is the killer hinting at his identity? Or is he trying to lure Sage into a deadly trap to end his reign of terror with a matching set of corpses?

One of the reviews for Marred

This is a compelling thriller that will leave you chilled to the bone. You definitely want to read this book with the lights on. The author weaves a spectacular web of murder and mayhem that holds you captive. It took a moment for me to adjust to the different POV styles but once I did, I found I really enjoyed the story being told this way. The author writes in first person for Sage’s POV and then alternates with her husband, Niko, and his partner, Frankie, in third person. The third person POV’s from Niko and Frankie added another level of intrigue and suspense to this harrowing tale. And the author’s detail and description of the heinous actions of the killer were vivid and scary and I found the case details and forensics fascinating. I also really enjoyed Frankie and her snarky comments and banter; it helped to lighten up some of the more intense scenes and tension-filled dialogue among characters.

From the beginning pages you are drawn to Sage and her plight. You can feel her grief and turmoil as she wrestles with her everyday life, trying to come to terms with the brutal assault she suffered, her struggling marriage and the closely guarded secrets she has kept from her husband as well as her desperation and terror knowing her twin sister has disappeared and is in the hands of a serial killer that has his sights set on her. It was also easy to connect with and sympathize with Niko as he struggles to come to terms with his wife’s attack and continued effect is has on him and their relationship as well as his ability to perform his duties as sheriff; including his worry for keeping Sage safe. The dialogue and drama of Sage and Niko’s relationship was intense and sometimes overwhelming as they worked through their problems and struggled to understand each other’s reasons behind their secrets and lies. It was definitely an emotional journey for them both. This is a disturbing, dark tale full of suspense, turmoil and twists and turns. It is a steady paced psychological thriller that keeps you engaged and wanting more. *I was gifted a copy of this book by the author and am voluntarily leaving my honest review.

A selection of other books by Sue Coletta

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Sue-Coletta/e/B015OYK5HO

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Sue-Coletta/e/B015OYK5HO

Read more reviews and follow Sue on Goodreads : https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14078869.Sue_Coletta

Connect to Sue via her website/blog: www.suecoletta.com

If it is variety that you are looking fore, then you will find that in the books of Jack Eason an for those who enjoy stepping back in time his historical novella Autumn 1066: The End of Anglo-Saxon Dominance is definitely worth reading.

About the book

Down the centuries the British Isles has always been seen by invaders as a legitimate target for exploitation. This novella concerns the last few weeks of Anglo-Saxon occupation, ending on the 14th of October, 1066. In Autumn 1066, author Jack Eason gives a great sense of ‘place’, of detail. The reader is right ‘there’ in that poignant year, marching, shivering with September cold (as ‘…no warming fires were allowed lest ‘enemy spies would soon spot their approach.’) From the very first few lines, Eason, practising his unique drycraft, begins to weave his particular brand of magic on his reader.

Eason glamour’s with well-crafted dialogue, drawing his reader into the time and into the action. To accomplish this, the author proffers a gentle blend of informative nomenclature coupled with familiar speech, to ease the reader into his story without distancing with words too unfamiliar, which is a criticism frequently made of Bernard Cornwell’s epics. I long to read more Martin Bradley

One of the recent reviews for the book

I’m certainly no expert on British history, but after reading Autumn 1066 by Jack Eason my interest in this era was piqued and I found myself researching the battle of Hastings. Autumn 1066 presents as factual and well researched, looking at the battle from a “fighters” point of view gave a different perspective to the events. The read had me imagining the battle field and being part of the battle and the closeness of the fighting.
This is an enjoyable read which I have recommended to friends.

Read the reviews and buy the book  –  https://www.amazon.com/Autumn-1066-Anglo-Saxon-dominance-ended/dp/1546685308

And Amazon UKhttps://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1546685308

A small selection of other books by Jack Eason

Discover all of Jack Eason’s books and read the reviews: https://www.amazon.com/Jack-Eason/e/B003MEA7AY/

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Jack-Eason/e/B003MEA7AY

Follow Jack and read other reviews on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4026249.Jack_Eason

Connect to Jack via his website: https://havewehadhelp.wordpress.com/

And now something for science fiction book lovers from David R. Grigg with his recently published The Fallen Sun

About The Fallen Sun

A world where the sun never sets; where there is no day and no night; and where shadows never move. Beyond an oasis of light, the freezing outer darkness stretches far away.

In this strange environment we follow the stories of three remarkable young people.

Together, these three must struggle to save their world. And in saving it, they change it and themselves forever.

Here’s what Bruce Gillespie, editor of the award-winning critical magazine *SF Commentary* says about it:

A real winner… Unputdownable… I found the characters instantly interesting, and the novel keeps on delivering surprises that undermine one’s expectations about the world they live in. And the landscape itself remains very vivid and interesting… If any novel deserves the top awards in the YA category, it is this one.”

One of the reviews for The Fallen Sun on Goodreads

Sep 30, 2018 Derrick Ashby rated it really liked it

This is an excellent book. It’s got interesting technology, good world building, a collection of characters that you care about, and some mysteries that keep you reading to the end. (And when you get there you want to start the next instalment straight away, except it hasn’t been written yet. Hopefully David Grigg is not the new George Martin.)

The world of Sunfall is one of perpetual day. The sun isn’t in the sky, but on top of a tower. Think Tolkien’s vision of Arda, except on Sunfall the power of the sun does not wax and wane, and there is no moon. So not really very similar, I guess… The locals believe that God put the sun there because it had been too far away from the planet to provide sufficient light, but it’s reasonably apparent that it’s an artefact of an earlier civilisation. I can’t help asking myself whether the people responsible for the “fallen sun” wouldn’t have contrived to make it wax and wane, but then the story would have been quite different, so it’s best to decide that they must have had a reason.

We don’t find out all there is to know about the science behind Sunfall and it’s entirely likely that more will be revealed in subsequent episodes. The planet is clearly orbiting a star that doesn’t provide a lot of energy. Is that because it has aged to the point where it is low on fuel? We are given evidence that at some point the planet supported more life. It has a breathable atmosphere, which suggests that a lot of plants expired a lot of oxygen over a long period. Is that atmosphere gradually bleeding off, as has been speculated was the case with Mars? Does the planet rotate? I’m curious about how much heat exchange goes on between the habitable area around the “fallen sun” and the rest of the planet. Is there a pattern of prevailing winds, and if there is, would the fallen sun system in fact work. Wouldn’t the heat just dissipate?

The human society on Sunfall is patriarchal and clan based. The clans are formed around industries or professions. The clan of the main character, for instance, is that of the Bellringers who are responsible for timekeeping. The society is also stratified; there are the “Brights”, or the aristocrats, and the “Dims”, who are the menial workers. Almost all the main characters are Brights. Among the Brights women are not allowed to do anything of any significance, but of course this doesn’t apply to the working class. There is gender-based tension and class-based tension.

It’s hard to say a lot about the social situation on Sunfall without giving away too much about the plot, so I won’t. Suffice it to say that change is imminent, and that the story is mostly concerned with what sort of change that will be, and whether it will be good change or bad change. “The fallen sun” is well worth reading, particularly if you like science-based science fiction. 

Head over and buy the book –  https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07H1QSFP2

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fallen-Sun-David-R-Grigg-ebook/dp/B07H1QSFP2

And Amazon Australia: https://www.amazon.com.au/Fallen-Sun-David-R-Grigg/dp/0994256612

Also by David R. Grigg

Read the reviews and buy all the books: https://www.amazon.com/David-Grigg/e/B0053A9QIY

Read more reviews and follow David on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8080180.David_R_Grigg

Connect to David via his website: https://www.rightword.com.au/writing/category/blog/

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you have found the selection of books interesting. Thanks Sally.

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Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore New on the Shelves – The Curse of Time by M. J. Mallon


Delighted to showcase the debut novel by author and book reviewer M.J. Mallon. The Curse of Time: Book One – Bloodstone is a YA fantasy and science fiction adventure, which is on pre-order with delivery for August 26th.

About The Curse of Time

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

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

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

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

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

Pre-order The Curse of Time: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B074CDJPY9

About M. J. Mallon

I am a debut author who has been blogging for three years:  My interests include writing, photography, poetry, and alternative therapies. I write Fantasy YA, and middle grade fiction as well as micropoetry – haiku and tanka. I love to read and have written over 100 reviews: https://mjmallon.com/category/a-z-book-reviews/

My alter ego is MJ – Mary Jane from Spiderman. I love superheros! I was born on the 17th of November in Lion City: Singapore, (a passionate Scorpio, with the Chinese Zodiac sign a lucky rabbit,) second child and only daughter to my proud parents Paula and Ronald. I grew up in a mountainous court in the Peak District in Hong Kong with my elder brother Donald. My parents dragged me away from my exotic childhood and my much loved dog Topsy to the frozen wastelands of Scotland. In bonnie Edinburgh I mastered Scottish country dancing, and a whole new Och Aye lingo.

As a teenager I travelled to many far-flung destinations to visit my abacus wielding wayfarer dad. It’s rumoured that I now live in the Venice of Cambridge, with my six foot hunk of a Rock God husband, and my two enchanted daughters.

After such an upbringing my author’s mind has taken total leave of its senses! When I’m not writing, I eat exotic delicacies while belly dancing, or surf to the far reaches of the moon. To chill out, I practise Tai Chi. If the mood takes me I snorkel with mermaids, or sign up for idyllic holidays with the Chinese Unicorn, whose magnificent voice sings like a thousand wind chimes.
Connect with M.J. Mallon

Website: https://mjmallon.com/
Amazon Author page: https://www.amazon.co.uk/M-J-Mallon/e/B074CGNK4L/
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17063622.M_J_Mallon
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Marjorie_Mallon
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/marjorie.mallon

Thank you very much for dropping by and it would be great if you could share the news of Marjorie’s debut novel. thanks Sally

Dog and Cats of the week – Muses of author Joelle LeGendre


Welcome to Dog (cats, parrots or spouses) of the Week. An opportunity for the pets of authors, bloggers and artists to promote their owners as well as enjoy a few minutes in the limelight (rightly deserved according to many of them!)

For those of you that are managed by some form of fur or feathered family, please send their photos and your links to sally.cronin@moyhill.com. I have had a number of entries and the weekly slots are filling up fast… get your muse to me….

Meet Fat White Dog, Coon cat and Other Brother Coon Cat.

Fat White Dog loves to steal Joelle’s Pillow and enjoy an afternoon nap.
my pillow,jpgCoon Cat is into purses

cooncattakesover

Other Brother Coon Cat demands more than equal desk space.

OBCC takes over desk

About Joelle LeGendre

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Joelle LeGendre is author of Atto Run – The First Level of Hell. The first thing that hits you when you read Joelle’s bio is that she has tackled a number of challenges with humour. As she says since she was born, she has viewed the world through her own rose colored filter of dyslexia, Tourette’s Syndrome, insomnia, almost-blindness and ‘ain’t quite right’.

She has a B.S in Rehabilitation Psychology and has worked in the field of developmental disabilities since 1993 assisting people with Mental Retardation, Autism, Down Syndrome and Cerebral Palsy.

Joelle considers writing to be a form of therapy and one that benefits all of us. Since 1999 she has been writing the Atto Run series and there are 15 books in various stages of development. The first Atto Run – The First Level of Hell is now available and has received great reviews. The second in the series is in the final stages of editing.

51SIqIb3wvL._UY250_One of the reviews for the book.

As a scifi fan, I found the novel, “Atto Run, The First Level of Hell,” an intriguing and fun read. If, like me, you enjoy tales of space travel, advanced technology, exotic other-world settings, and whole planets that just might not make it, you’ll likely enjoy this book too. But author, Joelle LeGendre, goes way beyond a traditional space-opera, and delivers what is ultimately a fine novel of ideas. Most good speculative fiction (or any good fiction) does transcend category, but Atto Run somehow personalizes its theme in ways I’ve not seen before.

The universe-threatening concerns of the intergalactic goddesses get squeezed down to the very small, human concerns of a central character who’s not so much an anti-hero as a non-hero. It’s through her “every-woman” eyes, we earthlings meet our first alien. And it’s not like anything you’d expect. It’s at the heart of the delightful comic sense running through this book and what makes it so much fun. I highly recommend it. You’ll expand your mind and laugh while doing it.

Buy the Book: http://www.amazon.com/Joelle-LeGendre/e/B00JBQDHWM

Her writing is not just confimed to books as Joelle has written articles for newspapers and has an impressive number of blog entries on Ranting Along

You will find some delightful observations on life, and yes you may find the occasional rant, but all with an element of humour that draws you in. I used to read the Tarot cards too.. Tarot Humour

When asked about being an author she said, “Being a writer is something you can’t NOT be if that’s what you are. It’s worse than opium, alcohol, cigarettes and crack. I MUST have my writing fix each and every day whether it’s writing in a blog or a book.

Joelle lives in North Florida with her husband and a substantial fur family.

Connect to Joelle on her blog and social media.

Blog: https://rantingalong.wordpress.com/
Website: http://www.attorun.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/JoelleLeGendre
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JoelleLeGendreattorun/

Thank you for dropping in and always enjoy your feedback.  I hope you have enjoyed this slightly different way to promote your books, blog or art.. If you are currently without animal management then you might consider sending a photo and bio of your partner!