Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update #Reviews #News – Christoph Fischer, Tina Frisco, N.A. Granger and Sue Hampton.


The first author receiving reviews for his new book by Christoph Fischer – Over my Dead Body: Murder at Eurovision – A Bebe Bollinger Murder Mystery.

About the book

On her return from a cruise ship gig Bebe Bollinger learns that fellow Welsh singer Bonnie Tyler has decided to enter a European Song comptition for the UK. While Bebe jealously watches the pre-publicity trail for ‘Eurovision’ in Malmö, a string of ‘odd accidents’ endangers several participants of the competition. This stirs her desire for playing detective again but also a curiosity to check out the suitability of Eurovision for her own career.
Follow Bebe’s continued search for fame and a comeback before it’s too late, step into the weird world that is Eurovision fandom and see how Bebe gets on with her naughty daughter and deals with those evil TV presenters.

One of the recent reviews for the book

Great to see Bebe Bollinger back! Love this character with her quirky ways. While still working on her comeback Bebe is asked by her friend Tom if she would help him with a problem at the Eurovision song contest. Bebe agrees and enlists the help of Beth (a former policewoman). Beth and Bebe teamed up once to solve a murder in Wales and work well together.

There is much to enjoy in this book thanks to excellent writing by Mr Fischer. A fascinating insight into Eurovision. I could feel the atmosphere and excitement of this song contest.

I love how Bebe deals with various unusual situations, in fact let’s just say I really enjoyed the whole experience of Bebe’s latest adventure and hope there is many more to come.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Over-Dead-Body-Eurovision-Bollinger-ebook/dp/B07CGNL2HJ/

And Amazon US: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Over-Dead-Body-Eurovision-Bollinger-ebook/dp/B07CGNL2HJ/

A  small selection of other books by Christoph Fischer.

Read all the reviews and buy the books: http://www.amazon.com/Christoph-Fischer/e/B00CLO9VMQ

and on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Christoph-Fischer/e/B00CLO9VMQ

Read more reviews and follow Christoph on Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6590171.Christoph_Fischer

Connect to Christoph via his Blog: http://writerchristophfischer.wordpress.com/

An author with fantastic news isTina Frisco with Vampyrie:Origin of the Vampire. The book won the Authorsdb 2018 First Lines Competition… fantastic news and if you have not read Vampyrie then I do recommend.. it will change your views on Vampires for life….

About Vampyrie

What if vampires were not the undead, but rather the dying? What if there were two factions among vampires: the sustained and the unsustainable? And what if those factions were at war with one another over the life of a young woman who promised them a future? Vampyrie brings the myth of the vampire into the realm of possibility. Phoebe Angelina Delaney is a reluctant genius and compassionate hothead. She finds herself in a pitch-dark underground and doesn’t remember how she got there. Did she drink too much alcohol and wander off in a stupor, or was she kidnapped by a malicious element determined to make her life a living hell?

Sir Michael Alan David is a vampire – an enigma, charismatic and mysterious, who weaves in and out of Phoebe’s life. Does he intend to use his title as a ruse to draw her closer to an unearthly fate, or is he a cloak-and-dagger knight in shining armor? Too many secrets have been kept for too long. Phoebe must unravel the mystery in order to survive. Two major characters from the author’s first novel, Plateau join forces with Phoebe to battle the demons in Vampyrie.

And here is the  review for Vampyrie that I posted last year.

Like many growing up, I read about and watched the films that featured vampires. Apart from the odd comedy, all painted those with fangs and a craving for blood as evil creatures that deserved a stake to the heart. After watching these demons, most of us opted to keep the lights on at night and wear clusters of garlic around our necks. No wonder some of us were never asked to the prom.

However, thanks to Tina Frisco’s book, it is clear that not all is as it seems when it comes to Vampires. As with humans there are good and evil walking amongst this element of society, and as you meet the various characters of the story, discovering more about their backgrounds, you will find yourself warming to the idea that most Vampires are good people.

Unfortunately, Phoebe Angelina Delaney suddenly finds herself in the hands of the rogue element of this ancient peoples. To this point she has been totally unaware of the forces at play within herself, or around her that have made her a target. She meets the enigmatic Michael who rescues her and then sets in motion an unravelling of the secrets that have been woven to protect her life. Close friends that have been part of her world since childhood are not as they seemed, and her frustration mounts as she tries to make sense of the increasingly complex deviations from her original path in life.

There are some wonderful characters, whose emerging backgrounds bring colour and context to the darkness surrounding Phoebe. Apart from her father Mitchell and Michael, you will meet Master Po at the dojo where she studies martial arts, Hannah a lifelong friend and work colleague and her best friend Lunah. Bringing their own kind of ancient and mystical element to the story are W’Hyani and RoDinjah, major characters from Frisco’s book Plateau.

As the forces of light and darkness within the Vampire peoples comes to a head, Phoebe and her friends must train tirelessly to prepare for the battle to come. What Phoebe does not realise, is that her growing mental and physical strength, are not just going to be needed in the fight against evil, but will lead to even more startling revelations. One of these being the true origins of those who have walked amongst us for 200,000 years.

The book is listed as horror and occult but I do think that it has a much wider appeal with action and adventure culminating in a brilliantly orchestrated final battle sequence. There are some scenes of violence but I would recommend for young adults upwards.

I enjoyed the story very much, the writing and plot flow easily throughout the book and from the middle of the book onwards, you will find yourself being drawn in and engaged in the build up to the ultimate battle against evil. I am sure that if you read this book, like me, your previous perceptions about vampires will be challenged in a very enlightening way.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Vampyrie-Origin-Vampire-Tina-Frisco/dp/154112720X

And universal Amazon: https://amzn.to/2JDwjAK

Also by Tina Frisco

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Tina-Frisco/e/B009NMOFNY

And on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Tina-Frisco/e/B009NMOFNY

Read more reviews and follow Tina on Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6497599.Tina_Frisco

Connect to Tina via her blog and website: https://tinafrisco.com/

The next book to receive reviews is  Rhe Brewster Mystery, Death in a Mudflat by N.A. Granger which was published a few weeks ago.

About the book

Fearless detective, ER nurse, devoted mother, and Pequod, Maine’s, answer to Kinsey Milhone, Rhe Brewster is back on the case. When an idyllic seaside wedding is suddenly interrupted by the grotesque sight of a decaying human arm poking out of the tidal mud, Rhe is thrown head first into a treacherous world of duplicity, drugs, and murder.

With her best friend Paulette and her main man Sam, the Chief of Police, Rhe seeks to solve the puzzle of the body found in the muck while also working with the FBI to identify the source of shipments of tainted heroin flooding the local campus and community. Maine’s opioid crisis has hit the town hard, with an escalating number of overdoses. More murders are uncovered, testing Rhe’s detective skills and steely resolve. While she follows the clues, Rhe encounters some sinister inhabitants of Pequod’s underbelly, including a practitioner of the Dark Arts, a hydra-headed crime gang, and an embittered, unhinged lobsterman with an axe to grind and nothing to lose. In her relentless drive to solve the crimes, Rhe narrowly escapes a watery grave, trades blows with Russian goons, and unknowingly prompts Paulette to put her life on the line in an attempt to catch a murderer in the act.

One of the recent reviews for the book

“Murder by Mudflat” is a hugely enjoyable, fast-paced mystery with excellent attention to forensic and scientific detail. I can promise you this book will keep you at the edge of your seat. Funny and cozy scenes alternate with high-octane, breath-taking action sequences. Rhe is a wonderful character: a mother and vulnerable lover one minute and a thug-chasing and quick-witted heroine the next. Her romance with Sam and the way that Rhe’s son Jack responds to it is beautifully done and adds just the right counter-weight to the fist-punching and at times tough and explosive plot. While generally cozy in style, there are some not so cozy scenes as well.

Grainger serves us some serious issues amongst some very light-hearted and entertaining sections: drug use, murder and some other, deeply personal issues, such as forgiveness and moving on.

Her characters are very real with problems of their own and an ability to reflect that surpasses the often one-dimensional place-holders in the genre. The combination of two separate investigations which may or may not be linked makes this a particularly rich and rewarding read, with plenty of possibilities for the plot and its denouement. This is a well written, breath-taking ride through two cases that show a crime writer at her best.

Head over and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07D8MM4VS/

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Death-Mudflat-Brewster-Mystery-Mysteries-ebook/dp/B07D8MM4VS

Also by N.A. Granger

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Read all the reviews and buy the books: http://www.amazon.com/N.A.-Granger/e/B00DN6I8GQ

And read more reviews and follow Noelle on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7150751.N_A_Granger#

Connect to Noelle via her website: https://saylingaway.wordpress.com/

The final author today with recent reviews is Sue Hampton for The Lucy Wilson Mysteries – Avatars of the Intelligence.

About the Book

Threatened by an old enemy, Lucy must step into her grandfather’s shoes. But in her new hometown, who can she trust?

Lucy Wilson doesn’t want to move from London to sleepy south Wales. But when she arrives at her new seaside home, it doesn’t appear to be as boring as she expected.

Ogmore-by-Sea seems to be under the control of a mysterious and powerful force. But why is Lucy its target? And why, when students at her new school start to disappear, does no one seem to care?

With the help of her new friend Hobo, Lucy Wilson must assume the mantle of her grandfather, Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart, and defeat an invisible enemy before it’s too late.

The Lucy Wilson Mysteries is a Lethbridge-Stewart spin-off adventure and features licensed characters created for Doctor Who by Mervyn Haisman and Henry Lincoln.

One of the recent reviews for the book

AlaranTop Contributor: Doctor Who TOP 1000 REVIEWER 4.0 out of 5 stars Lethbridge-Stewart: The Next Generation 12 June 2018

With the ongoing publication of Lethbridge-Stewart novels as well as the Brigadier’s daughter, Kate, now a recurring character in onscreen Doctor Who and his genetic grandfather, Archie, making an appearance in ‘Twice Upon a Time’, the Lethbridge-Stewart extended family has been quite prominent in the last few years. Now his granddaughter receives her own spinoff series of novels.

Clearly this is intended to be a children’s or young adult novel. However, it seems more likely that its primary market will be adults who have been following the Lethbridge-Stewart series of novels. It is independent enough from those, though, that it will hopefully attract a young fan base new, perhaps, to the Brigadier and maybe even Doctor Who.

The character of Lucy Wilson really began life in a short story named after her by the same author. This established the close connection between her and her grandfather. ‘Avatars of the Intelligence’ is set several years later. Her grandfather has sadly passed on and she is determined to follow in his footsteps.

With her parents moving the family out of London to the coastal Welsh town of Ogmore-by-Sea, the story is initially concerned with young teenage worries of being uprooted and having to start a new school and make new friends.

However, Lucy almost immediately picks up her own ‘companion’ in the form of Hobo. He is an intriguing and enigmatic character who looks likely to become her investigating sidekick. Together they are soon thrown into a mystery of disappearing children. It is not too much of a mystery though as they don’t exactly have time to solve it before events move on ahead of them and they embark on a trip to London to celebrate the life of Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart.

Although this is yet another clash with the Great Intelligence, it makes sense that the first Lucy Wilson novel puts her up against the foe that the Lethbridge-Stewart family has faced for several generations. Setting the story in the modern day means that the Intelligence can operate in a way it wasn’t able to during the time-period of the main Lethbridge-Stewart books and exercise its influence through the technology of mobiles, tablets, etc. Thus, the Intelligence is utilising a similar medium to that which it does ‘In the Bells of St. John’.

I wonder what Nicholas Courtney would think about all this. I’m sure that, like the Brigadier, he would be pleased with Lucy Wilson adopting the Lethbridge-Stewart mantle.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Lucy-Wilson-Mysteries-Avatars-Intelligence-ebook/dp/B07CNC9H7P/

And Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Lucy-Wilson-Mysteries-Avatars-Intelligence-ebook/dp/B07CNC9H7P/

A small selection of other books by Sue Hampton

Read the reviews and discover all the books: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Sue-Hampton/e/B0034PD8GG/

And Amazon US. https://www.amazon.com/Sue-Hampton/e/B0034PD8GG

Find more reviews and follow Sue Hampton on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3212403.Sue_Hampton

Connect to Sue via her website: https://www.suehamptonauthor.co.uk/

Thank you for dropping in today and hope you have enjoyed the reviews and news. It would be great if you could spread it around. Thanks Sally

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Sally’s Drive Time #Playlist – #Music to get the weekend started – The Requests – Sue Vincent, Jacquie Biggar, Mary Smith and Tina Frisco


Since the beginning of this series, I have asked you to share your favourite music with links in the comments. I thought I would create a special playlist, sharing the track and link to the latest post of those requesting the song.

The first track is requested by Sue Vincent  Eric Clapton and ‘Bad Love’ Apparently Sue cannot hit the road without this blasting out.

We have some country coming up from Charlie Pride with ‘Kiss an Angel Good Morning‘, requested by Jacquie Biggar and if you head over you can read Jacquie’s review of Map of the Heart by Susan Wiggs.

Billy Joel and ‘Uptown Girl’ was the selection by Mary Smith to keep her company when hitting the road.

The stunning voice of Loreena McKennitt and the song ‘Santiago’ was selected by Tina Frisco which I am sure you will enjoy. If you head over you can catch Tina’ recent guest post on The Story Reading Ape.

Tune in next week for part two of the requests from the series. Thanks for dropping by and have a wonderful weekend. Thanks Sally

 

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Spring Showcase – Tina Frisco, Claire Fullerton, Brigid P Gallagher, Teagan Riordan Geneviene, Agnes Mae Graham, Noelle Granger, Malia Ann Haberman, Sue Hampton, Jena C. Henry, Linda G. Hill


Welcome to spring….. and there might be a hint of colour in the garden, as daffodils push their way to the surface, but there is plenty of colour on the shelves of the bookstore that I thought I would share with you over the next week.

If you are looking for you next book to read then look no further than these talented authors and over 600 books currently on the shelves.

Instead of the usual Cafe and Bookstore updates on Friday and Monday.. I will be featuring a number of authors each day with their updated reviews.

I will give you their listing which also includes a link to buy the books but also discover others that they have written but are not listed. You will also find a link to their website or blog to find out more information, and as you can imagine… they write great posts too.

Here is the next ten featured authors from the Cafe and Bookstore.

Tina Frisco, Buy; https://www.amazon.com/Tina-Frisco/e/B009NMOFNY
Website: https://tinafrisco.com/

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A recent review for Vampyrie

A very different storyline in the vampire genre.Different, in a densely populated genre, is a good thing. But that’s not the main draw of this telling. It’s well-written and keeps you turning virtual pages. The characters are well-developed and believable. I knew I’d like it after the first few paragraphs. If you like a combination of horror, suspense and thriller, you’ll like this one. It even has a surprise twist that I didn’t see coming. I’m big on twists myself.

Claire Fullerton, Buy: http://www.amazon.com/Claire-Fullerton/e/B00HRJEUJ4
Website: http://www.clairefullerton.com

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One of the recent reviews for Dancing to an Irish Reel

Beautiful  on March 26, 2018
This book has been on my TBR for a long time and I was happy to finally be able to read it. And all I can say is that I wish I had read it sooner. The book is almost lyrical in its language as the author discusses everything from fate to music to travel in Ireland. All of this is wrapped in a tentative romance between an American woman and an Irish man, and I don’t know when I last read a book that so perfectly captures the uncertainty of new romance. I highly recommend the book.

 

Brigid P. Gallagher, buy: https://www.amazon.in/Brigid-P-Gallagher/e/B01N8UCYYD
Blog: https://watchingthedaisies.com/

A recent review for Watching the Daisies

I was prompted by Brigid to write this review in her inimitably gentle manner as I had forgotten to do so when I read it. Brigid is one of those people you instinctively gravitate to, you know she is kind, compassionate and non-judgemental. She is a natural healer. She is also very creative. I immediately relax when I read her blogposts. She has a quiet style, she allows you to breathe. I could relate to much of what is written in her memoir: the music, the fashion, the loss, chronic illness, and the quest for personal healing through complementary therapies. I am proud to recommend her book.

Teagan Geneviene – Buy: http://www.amazon.com/Teagan-Riordain-Geneviene/e/B00HHDXHVM
Blog: https://teagansbooks.com

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An extract from a recent review for Murder at the Bijou

I am a big fan of Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene, as an author, a blogger, and I was lucky to discover her blog a few years back, and although I missed some of her early serials at the time of their initial conception, I have managed to catch up with them over time. I have also read her novel, Atonement, Tennessee (you can check my review here) and know that apart from an imagination that knows no bounds, and a love of period research and attention to detail, she has a way with words and can create magical characters that readers get to care for and make them live through situations that never fail to surprise us and keep us on tenterhooks.

I recommend this book to readers with a sense of fun and play who enjoy a fast and light mystery (cozy style. No explicit violence, although there is violence, no sex scenes) set in the Jazz Age (oh, don’t forget to follow the author’s blog if you enjoy that historical period as she shares a post on the subject every Wednesday), with charming characters and great food. And even if you don’t have a lot of time to read for long stretches at a time, as the serial was created to be read a chapter per week, it is very easy to follow the story and not get lost. So, there is no excuse!

Agnes Mae Graham  Buy: https://www.amazon.co.uk/My-Vibrating-Vertebrae-other-poems-ebook/dp/B01HA8Q116
Blog:https://thestoryreadingapeblog.com/

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A recent review for the collection

These are stories or narrative poetry centered in Ireland written metrically with rhyme. The language flows well. Even when the stories seem dark the author’s heart shines through to light the way. For example, in “Ulter’s Shame”, a dark narrative with “blood stained footpaths and bullet spattered walls” we are not left with “screams” and “terror” but a resolution: “What matters is the depth of God’s sighs.”

She describes the people around her with kind brevity. The ending of “The Brownie Pack” states her love and humbly leaves it to God whether it is returned.

She describes the joyful and sorrowful mysteries of life. In “Tender to Touch” an old man buys a medicine from her. In his confusion he rubs it on his pained stomach rather than drinking it. Nonetheless, he’s cured and returns to thank her. In sadness, such as “Life!!”, she prays to God not to let the Devil win.

In the “The Lover” and “Kitty and Joe” we see death and love tied closely together and even though death wins in its ever objective way, I sense love redeeming each such victory as its own. This is a beautiful collection of very short stories or narrative poems that, perhaps because of their brevity, will linger in my mind enriching it.

Noelle Granger, Buy: http://www.amazon.com/N.A.-Granger/e/B00DN6I8GQ
Blog: https://saylingaway.wordpress.com/

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A recent review for Death in a Dacron Sail.

A True Page-Turner! on January 14, 2018

My only complaint about this book is that it kept me up too late! Truly, it is a page-turner and will leave you wanting more. Rhe Brewster, the indomitable assistant to the police during a complex, historic murder investigation, expertly navigates the twists and turns of this journey while simultaneously attempting to resolve the dissolution of her marriage. Pregnant with her second child, Rhe manages to pursue clues, save lives, and figure her way out of situations with Houdini-like grace. N.A. Granger paints an indelible portrait of small-town life in rural Maine, with unforgettable characters who become her readers’ friends and foes. Read this book–you’ll be glad you did!

Malia Ann Haberman, Buy: https://www.amazon.com/Malia-Ann-Haberman/e/B009CJ0DNE
Blog: https://maliaannhaberman.wordpress.com

To view all Malia’s books please visit Amazon or her blog.

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One of the recent reviews for Letters from an American Soldier

A very sweet story. on October 22, 2017

A real life love story through the eyes of a soldier during the Korean war. Letter by letter, the reader can imagine what life must have been like for those stationed far away from loved ones in a time when communication took days or weeks. Bill’s love and desire to be with his darling Nita is so sweetly and authentically expressed. It makes you want to read “just one more letter,” and before you know it, the book is as hard to put down as any fictional romance novel.

Sue Hampton, Buy: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Sue-Hampton/e/B0034PD8GG/
Website: https://www.suehamptonauthor.co.uk/

One of the recent reviews for Ravelled.

Whether it is writing for children or adults, Sue Hampton’s wit, wisdom, clarity, and tender affirmations suffuse ordinary—and sometimes not-so-ordinary—moments with an unforgettable luster. In her masterful collection, RAVELLED & OTHER STORIES, she explores a full range of ideas and characters, spanning from the friendship of an elder woman and her young, male driver, in “Away for Christmas,” to the lyrical fable that subverts popular beliefs of beauty and love, “The Brute and the Beast.”

Sue Hampton’s deftness can be further seen by the way she allows the readers enough room to interpret meaning for themselves. Her characters, whether lovely or unlovely, conjure a sense of compassion and connection. Through experiences of love, grief, loneliness, redemption, we are never left heartbroken, for every adversity either sparkles with humor or leads the character to something transcendent. A teenager falls in love with her teacher, a goddess-queen struggles with self-doubt, a newly divorced, older man engages in hilarious antics to escape feeling pathetic. One story leads to another, like rosary beads, holding the spectator to a simultaneous act of reading and meditation. This is a rare and satisfying collection that I am sure will teach me something new about writing, life, and the mind of an extraordinary author every time I re-read it. You simply must get a copy!

Jena C. Henry, Buy: https://www.amazon.com/Jena-C.-Henry/e/B014PLDN12
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jena.c.henry/

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An extract from the most recent review for The Golden Age of Charli RSVP

While reading The Golden Age of Charli: RSVP, I moved from wanting Charli to be my aunt, to wanting Charli to be my best friend, and finally to wanting to BE Charli when I retire someday. I found the main character to be delightful, warm, honest and fun; and I appreciated her life’s motto – “press on” – and admired her determination to deepen her relationships with her husband (the newly-retired and golf-loving Pud) and with her many nieces and nephews. I also found myself drooling over the author’s abundant descriptions of food, wine, and cocktails – an unexpected and delicious part of this book! One month from now, my youngest will be heading off to college, so I ended up relating more than I expected I would to Charli’s empty-nest pursuits. Although my husband and I are far from retirement, I still felt a kinship with Charli, and I look forward to reading the next books in Jena Henry’s charming series!

Linda G. Hill, Buyhttps://www.amazon.com/dp/B01JQWMQAE
Blog: https://lindaghill.com

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A recent review for The Magician’s Curse.

A mysterious curse, a chance meeting on a train. The hauntingly beautiful Stephen Dagmar meets and instantly recognizes the love of his life on a train running away from her complicated family life.

This story challenges the reader to suspend disbelief and allow oneself to be drawn into the world of magic and the supernatural and accept it as reality.

The antagonist of the story, Nina Curry, has a level of vulnerability that makes her a compelling character to watch.

Herman Anderson, the heroine of this piece, is a blank sheet. Her age and inexperience make this the case more than anything else. She is acted upon rather than acts. As this is an ongoing series of works, I look forward to Herman’s development in the course of the story as things continue to unfold for this pair.

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore Update – Leslie Tate, Jane Risdon and Christina Jones, M.C.V.Egan and Tina Frisco


Welcome to the first of the week’s Cafe and Bookstore updates with a new release from Leslie TateLavender blue: Three Shades of Love – Violet published on March 14th.

About  Lavender blue: Three Shades of Love – Violet

The passionate, late-life love of Beth and James begins in 2003 on a blind date in a London restaurant. Attracted by James’s cheerful openness, Beth is drawn into an unlikely encounter between his larkiness and her own romantic faith. From then on they bond, exchanging love-texts, exploring sea walks and gardens and sharing their past lives with flashbacks to Beth’s rural childhood and her marriage to a dark, charismatic minister.

Telling stories runs in Beth’s family, so she keeps up with her friends, following their efforts to find love in a soulless, materialistic world. But Beth’s own passion for giving and commitment is pushed to the limits as she and James struggle with her divorce, problems with each other’s children, and life-threatening illness. In the end, tested by pain, they discover something larger than themselves that goes beyond suffering and loss.

Violet, with its in-depth portrait of contemporary relationships, gallery of characters and links to Purple and Blue, is the climax to the Lavender Blues trilogy, and a powerfully observed, realistic account of modern love.

An early review for the book.

Violet is the final instalment of Leslie Tate’s Lavendar Blues trilogy. It chronicles the passionate later-in-life relationship of Beth and James. A simple love story? Think again. From the very first scene, a childhood story of Beth’s, entitled The Girl who Began Again, we are given a sense that this story will be something unique. We move straight from the childhood story, to an adult Beth sitting in a restaurant with a sheaf of letters sent to her by James. We learn that the pair have been corresponding and talking by telephone and that this would be their first date. Not a bad introduction.

After their successful first date, Tate eschews traditional story telling techniques by going backwards, over the series of pre-dated letters that have led to this point in the story. I wasn’t initially sure about this strategy, surely it would have made more sense to have the letters before the date? However, though the unorthodox decision does quench some of the initial dramatic tension, the letters themselves are fascinating. The move an invitation for the reader to abandon all pre-conceived ideas of what a novel ‘should’ involve.

After divesting us of our expectations, Tate then moves the narrative back and forth between Beth’s childhood and her evolving relationship with James. The various chapters are quirky and unorthodox involving text messages, dialogues without attributions, dreams, stories and poetry, giving one a sense that we are reading not so much a novel, as a real-life scrapbook of someone’s life. Particularly effective are the scenes from Beth’s early courtship with her first husband, an evangelical church minister, juxtaposed against the playfulness and indeed sacredness of her burgeoning relationship with James.

I part two, we skip forward six years, to a series of diary entries in Beth’s first-person narrative voice. She is married to James by this stage and I had similar reservations about the loss of dramatic tension as we looked back over their early struggles as a married couple. Despite this, I found part two the warmest and most endearing part of the novel. Beth is ill, the reader soon learns, her simple diary entries a chronicle of a couple coming to terms with a terminal illness. Their struggles, are chronicled in a quirky, unorthodox manner, which I’m beginning to recognise as Tate’s signature style. There is a loveliness to Beth’s simple spirituality, evoking all that is best in a life of faith. Their return to the rocky headland of their courtship concludes this section in a deeply symbolic manner.

Part three, opens with a letter written by James who is now in deep mourning. It is followed by some third person reflections of the community and then, what can only be described as series of affecting vignettes and stories from the perspective of the recently departed (or is she?) Beth. This section brought the metaphor of a scrapbook forcefully back to me. Perhaps, because I have only just planned a funeral, I was mindful of the fragmentary nature of our recollections. How one person can be different things to different people. How it is only when we pull them together that we can form a complete picture of their life. Which is sacred, in all of its phases, as Beth’s story was. This, I think, is the triumph of Tate’s novel.

Head over and buy the book: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Violet-Lavender-Blues-Leslie-Tate/dp/1910094471

and Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Violet-Lavender-Blues-Leslie-Tate/dp/1910094471

Also by Leslie Tate

Read the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Leslie-Tate/e/B07BL5L23B

You can find all the books with reviews on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6043204.Leslie_Tate

Signed copies of all the books can be bought at Leslie Tate’s own bookshop: https://leslietate.com/shop/violet/

Connect to Leslie via his website: https://leslietate.com/

Jane Risdon is celebrating more reviews for Only One Woman.. co-written with Christina Jones.

About Only One Woman

Two women, one love story.

June 1968. Renza falls head over heels for heartthrob guitarist Scott. But after a romantic summer together they are torn apart when Renza’s family moves away.

December 1968. On the night she believes to be her last, Stella meets Scott at a local dance. He’s the most beautiful boy she’s ever seen and if this one night is all they have, she’ll take it.

As the final colourful year of the sixties dawns, the question is: can there be only one woman for Scott?

One of the recent reviews for the book

on 23 February 2018

Youth, love, and a beautiful rock God could only mean one thing . . . and the reader will ache for both heroines as the novel pulls them into love, travel, good music, and wrenching heartache.

Only One Woman grabbed my attention from the first diary entry of love-stricken Renza and held my fascination to the very last page. Though I grew up post-sixties, I’ve always been fascinated by the music of this era. The author’s extensive knowledge and repertoire of 60’s music had me singing favorite lyrics as I delved into Renza and Stella’s worlds. Ingeniously crafted, we experience the two heroine’s lives, loves, and heartache through their diaries. And through their personal experiences, we meet Scott and his fabulous Rock Band, Narnia’s Children.

Inherently different, the two heroines are raised by parents with a different set of standards and values. Sweet and prudently innocent, Renza lives with her authoritarian mother who wields control like a prison guard. Edgy and stylishly bold, Stella, recovering from a debilitating illness, lives with her liberal, easy-going, and loving parents who allow her many freedoms as an only child. Though Renza and Stella have different upbringings, they have four things in common, their love for Scott, music, reading, and writing.

Both women tugged at my heart, and I found myself rooting for both, but as the titles suggest, there can only be one woman for the devastatingly sexy Scott. At times, I grew angry at the heroine’s naiveté, and spoke under my breath, “Wise up!” On several occasions, I wished I could reach through my Kindle and thoroughly shake sense into all three, especially Scott. Such heartache and havoc he wreaks unknowingly? Did he know? That would call for an additional diary containing Scott’s thoughts. But the reader senses he’s torn and struggles with his decisions.

The authors kept me guessing which heroine would succeed victoriously in capturing Scott’s eternal love, and wondering if they’d both be better off without him. This book would be fantastic on the screen with the fashionable, colorful clothing, and music of the sixties set in several lovely locations. Hmmm . . . I hope! Thank you, Ms. Jones and Ms. Risdon for a fantastic read!

and Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Only-One-Woman-Christina-Jones-ebook/dp/B075D88JBP

Read more reviews and follow Jane on Goodreads:https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5831801.Jane_Risdon

Connect to Jane Risdon via her blog:  https://janerisdon.wordpress.com/

A small selection of books by Christina Jones.

Read the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Christina-Jones/e/B001K8U57Y/

and Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Christina-Jones/e/B001K8U57Y/

Connect to Christina via her blog: https://christinajones-writing.blogspot.ie/

The next author with recent reviews for her book Death of a Sculptor in Hue, Shape and Color is M. C. V. Egan.

M.C.V EganAbout the book

Color coded love stories and revealing female anatomies lead to the murder of world renowned sculptor, Bruce Jones.

In life, the artist loved women, almost as much as women loved him. Adored for his art and colorful personality, Bruce is mourned by the world at large. The tale is launched with the multifaceted perspectives of four ex-wives, the current wife, and his new love interest and their children.

Mary , Bruce’s wealthy first love, is always in perfect pink; the color of love. Mother of Clair the famous actress and Aaron the corporate lawyer.

Leslie The Second’s color is yellow for her sunny nature as much as for her fears and insecurities. Her only son Bobby is vulnerable and lost. Mourning his father’s death, he finds himself.

Petra The Third, is outstanding in orange, representing not only her native Holland but also her love of the fruit. Cherished her freedom and had no children of her own.

Toni The Fourth is a vibrant passionate Italian red and part of the eventual glue that creates and solidifies this dysfunctional Jones family. Her teenage daughters Tina and Isa are as different as night and day.

Brooke The Fifth a gold-digger. Green, her color, reflects the color of money and envy. Her young son’s Kyle and Caleb are too young to understand why their world has been turned upside-down.

Mara, as blue as the ocean was the last woman to steal Bruce’s heart. Mother to newborn Baby Peter is the unexpected gift and surprise.

Bruce Jones’ eight children speak out, too. They are as distinctive as the women he loved, their mothers.

Loose ends are tied up by the insights of Sylvia, Aaron’s wife and a trusted keeper of secrets; Scott, the private investigator and family friend; Nona, the quintessential grandmother everyone loves but to whom few are truly related; and Detective Jim Miller who will not rest until he discovers Bruce Jones’ murderer.

One of the recent reviews for the book

I’ll start by saying that this author – M.C.V. Egan – is a new author for me to read and I was definitely NOT disappointed with the story!!!

The story is about a rich and famous artist who is known for his sculptures. Bruce Jones, age 62, dies unexpectedly. Bruce was loved by all of his exes’ and his current wife (5 in all), his mistress and his seven children. Through his art, he has given each wife a different color of his choosing that best describes each women in his mind. Each chapter of the book tells part of the story through the eyes of one of the characters that he so loved. It wasn’t until the funeral that all the exes’ came together and ended up being friends. Especially when a new color was show during the slide show of his life.

The one question that was brought up after the funeral was – Was this a heart attack or was this murder??? I won’t tell you the answer because you really need to read the book and discover his life for yourself!!!

This was an amazing book and I love love loved it!!!

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Death-Sculptor-Hue-Shape-Color-ebook/dp/B01MZ3Z8TC

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Death-Sculptor-Hue-Shape-Color-ebook/dp/B01MZ3Z8TC

Also by M.C.V. Egan

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Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/M.C.V.-Egan/e/B0069W9NY2

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/M.C.V.-Egan/e/B0069W9NY2

61axflh-oml-_ux250_ Connect to Catalina Egan via her website: http://thebridgeofdeaths.com/

The final author today with recent reviews is Tina Frisco with Vampyrie:Origin of the Vampire.

About Vampyrie

What if vampires were not the undead, but rather the dying? What if there were two factions among vampires: the sustained and the unsustainable? And what if those factions were at war with one another over the life of a young woman who promised them a future? Vampyrie brings the myth of the vampire into the realm of possibility. Phoebe Angelina Delaney is a reluctant genius and compassionate hothead. She finds herself in a pitch-dark underground and doesn’t remember how she got there. Did she drink too much alcohol and wander off in a stupor, or was she kidnapped by a malicious element determined to make her life a living hell?

Sir Michael Alan David is a vampire – an enigma, charismatic and mysterious, who weaves in and out of Phoebe’s life. Does he intend to use his title as a ruse to draw her closer to an unearthly fate, or is he a cloak-and-dagger knight in shining armor? Too many secrets have been kept for too long. Phoebe must unravel the mystery in order to survive. Two major characters from the author’s first novel, Plateau join forces with Phoebe to battle the demons in Vampyrie.

And here is the most recent  review for Vampyrie

A very different storyline in the vampire genre.Different, in a densely populated genre, is a good thing. But that’s not the main draw of this telling. It’s well-written and keeps you turning virtual pages. The characters are well-developed and believable. I knew I’d like it after the first few paragraphs. If you like a combination of horror, suspense and thriller, you’ll like this one. It even has a surprise twist that I didn’t see coming. I’m big on twists myself.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Vampyrie-Origin-Vampire-Tina-Frisco/dp/154112720X

and Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/VAMPYRIE-Origin-Vampire-Tina-Frisco-ebook/dp/B01N2UYDG6

Also by Tina Frisco

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Tina-Frisco/e/B009NMOFNY

And on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Tina-Frisco/e/B009NMOFNY

Read more reviews and follow Tina on Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6497599.Tina_Frisco

Connect to Tina via her blog and website: https://tinafrisco.com/

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope that you have found some books that can be added to your TBRs… Thanks Sally

There are approximately 600 books in the Cafe and Bookstore and if you would like to find out more about joining the other authors then please check out this link.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore/

 

 

Smorgasbord Posts from My Archives – Blog Sitting February 2017 – Time is an Illusion by Tina Frisco


I was delighted that my lovely friend and talented author Tina Frisco leapt into action when I invited writers to blog sit whilst I am away with my two sisters last year. Tina is hugely supportive of all her blogging friends and in this post she explores our perception of time.

61drzdpa47l-_ux250_About Tina Frisco.

Tina Frisco is an author, singer-songwriter, RN, activist, and student of shamanism. Born in Pennsylvania USA, she attended nursing school in New York and lives in California. She began writing as a young child and received her first guitar at age 14, which launched her passion for music and songwriting. She has performed publicly in many different venues. Her publishing history includes book reviews, essays, articles in the field of medicine, her début novel – PLATEAU, her children’s book – GABBY AND THE QUADS, and her latest novel – VAMPYRIE. She enjoys writing, reading, music, dancing, arts and crafts, exploring nature, and frequently getting lost in working crossword puzzles.

Please enjoy Tina’s post – Time Is an Illusion

“The dividing line between past, present, and future is an illusion.”
–Albert Einstein

Terri Webster Schrandt

Image courtesy of Terri Webster-Schrandt

What? Had Einstein lost his mind? We all know time flows in an orderly fashion, is quantifiable, and has duration. Therefore, since time can be measured, it must be real, right?

We measure time in a linear fashion: seconds, minutes, hours, days, months, years, decades, centuries, millennia. We give it dimension, quantity, direction, magnitude. Without measuring the passage of time, we would not know how old we are, when to arrive for and how long to stay at work, when to go to bed and wake up in the morning, how to bookmark events, when to catch the train . . . In our fast-paced technological society, without time, we would be lost. Time gives structure and order to our lives yet is no more real than Batman or Catwoman. Or is it?

Some physicists state that time is relative. Others argue that time flows and is ongoing. But both seem to agree that the space-time we inhabit is a construct of the human mind rather than a fundamental of nature. Thus, if time is not a primitive – not fundamental – then it follows that time is not needed to construct reality.

In his article Time, Space and Consciousness, Kevin Ryerson states that how we experience an event is what creates our reality, rather than the event itself.

http://www.kevinryerson.com/News/Articles/time.htm

If there is no clock in the cosmos, then there is no clock on planet Earth. We do not exist apart from the universe, because we are part of the universe. As above, so below.

Because our spirits inhabit material vehicles, we’re under the impression that all things material are in relative position to each other. But if we remove the material from this equation, we’re left with the spiritual. And although quantum physics is approaching understanding, the spirit realm is something science has yet to explain.

So if time is an illusion, then where are we relative to past, present, future? If we exist in no-time, then it would likely follow that the only true reality is the now. And if all that exists is now, then past/present/future must be occurring simultaneously.

The TV series Quantum Leap touched on the theory of time being an illusion. And in his book, The Isaiah Effect, Gregg Braden discusses the mystery of time.

book-gregg-braden-the-isaiah-effectIn one example, he tells of a tour bus traveling from Mt. Sinai to Cairo in four hours, when the trip should have taken seven or more hours. In Another example, he tells of a woman healed of bladder cancer in only two minutes and forty seconds. This was observed on ultrasound while three practitioners stood behind her and repeated only one word in their native tongue, a word loosely translated into English that meant ‘already gone’ or ‘already accomplished.’

We know a bus trip down a mountain, then under the Suez Canal, and then across a desert could not be condensed from seven hours to four. And yet it was. We know a cancerous tumor cannot be shrunken and made to disappear within two minutes and forty seconds. And yet it was. Some might attribute these events to the entity referred to as God and call them miracles. Yet if present and future coexist, and we observe events from the perspective of no-time, then the future becomes the present as concentric circles of absolute reality overlap and superimpose, one upon the other. This theory implies that all possible outcomes to any situation already exist within the now.

In an article adapted from Integrative Health & Healing, Fall 2003, the author discusses the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics, i.e., there’s an interplay between how our reality manifests and how we observe it.

Shamanic Healing: Why it Works

http://www.beliefnet.com/faiths/pagan-and-earth-based/2003/12/shamanic-healing-why-it-works.aspx

It’s not easy to wrap one’s head around the concept of space-time being an illusion, because most of us can’t imagine life without yesterday, today, and tomorrow. But if we view life as circles within a circle rather than a sequence of events, the concept of no-time begins to make sense.

In the video below, Michael Harner explains three experiences of ‘time outside of time’ achieved by shamanic journeying via sonic driving using the drum and vibrational instruments:

Type 1: Simple Experiences
(a) The compression of time;
(b) Going backward in time;
(c) Going forward in time.

Type 2: Simultaneous Experiences
(a) The dreamtime – one is simultaneously in relative time and the dreamtime (the origin of all things), and can move in and out of each at will;
(b) Merging with a beneficent helping entity in absolute time while keeping a foot in relative time.

Type 3: Ecstatic Cosmic Union.

The Transcendence of Time in Shamanic Practice,
Michael Harner, SAND 2011

What I find heartening is once Types 2 and 3 have been experienced, it becomes easier and easier to go there at will. Practice really does make perfect.

What is your concept of time? Namaste, my friends ♥

©TinaFrisco 2017

51mlkwvudcl-_uy250_About  Vampyrie Origin of the Vampire

What if vampires were not the undead, but rather the dying? What if there were two factions among vampires: the sustained and the unsustainable? And what if those factions were at war with one another over the life of a young woman who promised them a future? Vampyrie brings the myth of the vampire into the realm of possibility.

Phoebe Angelina Delaney is a reluctant genius and compassionate hothead. She finds herself in a pitch-dark underground and doesn’t remember how she got there. Did she drink too much alcohol and wander off in a stupor, or was she kidnapped by a malicious element determined to make her life a living hell?

Sir Michael Alan David is a vampire – an enigma, charismatic and mysterious, who weaves in and out of Phoebe’s life. Does he intend to use his title as a ruse to draw her closer to an unearthly fate, or is he a cloak-and-dagger knight in shining armor?

Too many secrets have been kept for too long. Phoebe must unravel the mystery in order to survive. Two major characters from the author’s first novel, Plateau, join forces with Phoebe to battle the demons in Vampyrie.

A recent review of the book

This story by the talented author, Tina Frisco, is anything but a normal Vampire story. The characters come alive and leap from the pages. I liked the Protagonist, Phoebe, but fell in love with her best friend, Lunah. Phoebe uncovers layer upon layer of secrets that have been withheld from her for her entire life. I don’t want to give away what they are, I will just say that the author kept me guessing. And, not only do we get a riveting story, but we get the backstory on how Vampires came to live on earth and the chemistry of their makeup.

I have never read anything like this with such intricate detail and accuracy. There was plenty of action to keep me interested and turning pages and it comes to a climactic conclusion with final big secrets being revealed. I also loved that the author brought two characters into this story from her first book, Plateau. It is a multi-dimensional story layered with spiritual wisdom as well as the character drama. If you love a fast-paced story with lots of surprises, you’ll love this book.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N2UYDG6

and Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/VAMPYRIE-Origin-Vampire-Tina-Frisco-ebook/dp/B01N2UYDG6

Also by Tina Frisco

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Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Tina-Frisco/e/B009NMOFNY

And on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Tina-Frisco/e/B009NMOFNY

Read more reviews and follow Tina on Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6497599.Tina_Frisco

  Connect to Tina via her website: https://tinafrisco.com/

I am sure you enjoyed reading Tina’s post again as much as I did and please share across your own networks.. thanks Sally

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Sally’s Book Reviews – Vampyrie: Origin of the Vampire by Tina Frisco


Welcome to one of my own reviews for the books that reside in a very special place. My TBR is a treasure trove of books that I have bought or have received as gifts for birthdays and Christmas. I no longer wish for things to dust or to wear, and a book brings many hours of pleasure, several times over as they are never discarded.

This week I read Vampyrie: Origin of the Vampire by Tina Frisco in print version. The book traveled a long way to reach me via California, Toronto, England and then to Ireland. A wonderful gift and all the more treasured for being signed by the author.

About Vampyrie: Origin of the Vampire

What if vampires were not the undead, but rather the dying? What if there were two factions among vampires: the sustained and the unsustainable? And what if those factions were at war with one another over the life of a young woman who promised them a future? Vampyrie brings the myth of the vampire into the realm of possibility. Phoebe Angelina Delaney is a reluctant genius and compassionate hothead. She finds herself in a pitch-dark underground and doesn’t remember how she got there. Did she drink too much alcohol and wander off in a stupor, or was she kidnapped by a malicious element determined to make her life a living hell?

Sir Michael Alan David is a vampire – an enigma, charismatic and mysterious, who weaves in and out of Phoebe’s life. Does he intend to use his title as a ruse to draw her closer to an unearthly fate, or is he a cloak-and-dagger knight in shining armor? Too many secrets have been kept for too long. Phoebe must unravel the mystery in order to survive. Two major characters from the author’s first novel, Plateau join forces with Phoebe to battle the demons in Vampyrie.

My review for Vampyrie:Origin of the Vampire.

Like many growing up, I read about and watched the films that featured vampires. Apart from the odd comedy, all painted those with fangs and a craving for blood as evil creatures that deserved a stake to the heart. After watching these demons, most of us opted to keep the lights on at night and wear clusters of garlic around our necks. No wonder some of us were never asked to the prom.

However, thanks to Tina Frisco’s book, it is clear that not all is as it seems when it comes to Vampires. As with humans there are good and evil walking amongst this element of society, and as you meet the various characters of the story, discovering more about their backgrounds, you will find yourself warming to the idea that most Vampires are good people.

Unfortunately, Phoebe Angelina Delaney suddenly finds herself in the hands of the rogue element of this ancient peoples. To this point she has been totally unaware of the forces at play within herself, or around her that have made her a target. She meets the enigmatic Michael who rescues her and then sets in motion an unravelling of the secrets that have been woven to protect her life.  Close friends that have been part of her world since childhood are not as they seemed, and her frustration mounts as she tries to make sense of the increasingly complex deviations from her original path in life.

There are some wonderful characters, whose emerging backgrounds bring colour and context to the darkness surrounding Phoebe. Apart from her father Mitchell and Michael, you will meet Master Po at the dojo where she studies martial arts, Hannah a lifelong friend and work colleague and her best friend Lunah. Bringing their own kind of ancient and mystical element to the story are W’Hyani and RoDinjah, major characters from Frisco’s book Plateau.

As the forces of light and darkness within the Vampire peoples comes to a head, Phoebe and her friends must train tirelessly to prepare for the battle to come. What Phoebe does not realise, is that her growing mental and physical strength, are not just going to be needed in the fight against evil, but will lead to even more startling revelations. One of these being the true origins of those who have walked amongst us for 200,000 years.

The book is listed as horror and occult but I do think that it has a much wider appeal with action and adventure culminating in a brilliantly orchestrated final battle sequence. There are some scenes of violence but I would recommend for young adults upwards.

I enjoyed the story very much, the writing and plot flow easily throughout the book and from the middle of the book onwards, you will find yourself being drawn in and engaged in the build up to the ultimate battle against evil. I am sure that if you read this book, like me, your previous perceptions about vampires will be challenged in a very enlightening way.

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Vampyrie-Origin-Vampire-Tina-Frisco/dp/154112720X

and Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/VAMPYRIE-Origin-Vampire-Tina-Frisco-ebook/dp/B01N2UYDG6

Also by Tina Frisco

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Tina-Frisco/e/B009NMOFNY

And on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Tina-Frisco/e/B009NMOFNY

Read more reviews and follow Tina on Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6497599.Tina_Frisco

About Tina Frisco

Tina Frisco is an author, singer-songwriter, RN, activist, and student of shamanism. Born in Pennsylvania USA, she attended nursing school in New York and lives in California. She began writing as a young child and received her first guitar at age 14, which launched her passion for music and songwriting. She has performed publicly in many different venues. Her publishing history includes book reviews; essays; articles in the field of medicine; her début novel, PLATEAU; her children’s book, GABBY AND THE QUADS; and her latest novel, VAMPYRIE. She enjoys writing, reading, music, dancing, arts and crafts, exploring nature, and frequently getting lost in working crossword puzzles.

Connect to Tina on her blog and social media.

Website: http://tinafrisco.com
Amazon: http://hyperurl.co/3vme2a 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TinaFrisco.Author
Twitter: http://bit.ly/14VXY49
LinkedIn:  http://linkd.in/1aAGwXl
Google+:  http://bit.ly/1Fc1Uzn
Goodreads:  http://bit.ly/165vmVp

I hope you have enjoyed my review and will head over and read Vampyrie yourself. It is available in both print and eBook. Thanks Sally.

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore Update – Toni Pike, Deanie Humphrys-Dunne, Terri Webster-Schrandt, Jaye Marie and Anita Dawes and Tina Frisco


Welcome to the first author update this week and the first featured author is Toni Pike who has recently published The One Way Diet.

About the One Way Diet

Are you searching for the pathway to weight loss?

This is a no-nonsense guide to finding the slender person you dream about, with simple advice on how to lose weight by focusing on your goals. THE ONE WAY DIET is not just a healthy eating plan, but is also about coping with every aspect of your weight loss journey.

People often say to me now that I’m lucky because I don’t have to worry about my weight. How wrong they are! Five years ago, I lost more than thirty kilograms after a lifetime of weight problems. Every day since then, I make the lifestyle choice to stay slim.

I call this THE ONE WAY DIET because, when I followed this method, my weight moved in one direction only until I reached my goal weight of sixty kilograms. I’m giving you the benefit of my personal experience about weight loss, but there are no wild theories in this book. All you will find here is useful information and powerful inspiration.

You’ll find out why most people gain weight and what I believe is the most effective way to lose it. Discover how to keep yourself motivated and how to cope with the challenges of everyday life. Be prepared for each stage of your weight loss journey and learn how to avoid a weight loss plateau.

If your dream is to lose weight, then this book will give you the tools that you need to succeed.

Head over and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/One-Way-Diet-pathway-weight-ebook/dp/B078B64JX2

and Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/One-Way-Diet-pathway-weight-ebook/dp/B078B64JX2

Also by Toni Pike

A recent review on Goodreads for The Magus Covenant – Book 1 The Jonathan Fletcher Mystery Thriller Series.

Nov 07, 2017 richard w calvert rated it it was amazing  · 

Great biblical fiction – This story was a cleverly crafted fictional work that expertly intertwined many characters to make a fulfilling and intriguing start as the first of many new books in series By Toni Pike embarks on a tantalizing new series which is well written and excellent by an exquisite author who I look forward to reading every book in her new series.

Find out more about Toni Pike, read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Toni-Pike/e/B009I70E8Y

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Toni-Pike/e/B009I70E8Y

Read more reviews on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14736589.Toni_Pike

For more information on Toni connect via her website: https://tonipike.com/

The next author is Deanie Humphrys-Dunne with a new review for her memoir – My Life at Sweetbriar: A Life Changed by Horses.

About My Life at Sweetbriar

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

A recent review for the book

This children’s chapter book is truly an inspiration. The author was born with a disability that impacted her ability to walk. As a young girl growing up on a horse farm, she wished that she could ride and jump and win horse shows. Her Daddy, being her biggest fan, helped her overcome her fears and various horses in her life improved her self-confidence. With a lot of practice and perseverance, she made her dreams come true. This book teaches children about following their dreams no matter what disability, fear, or obstacle they may have. While reading the book, I felt like I was right there with the author cheering her on. I love that she included pictures of herself, her family, and her horses. This is a great book for children about never giving up.

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

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

Also by Deanie Humphrys-Dunne

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

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

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

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

Now for a review for a very useful book for bloggers by Terri Webster Schrandt.. Not only does Better Blogging with Photography guide you through using images in your posts, but Terri also offers you free photographs from her portfolio to use.

About the Book

There is truth to the old adage that a picture is worth a thousand words. As a blogger, are you weary of constantly hunting for images to illustrate the subject of your blog posts?

Perhaps you are a new blogger struggling to get more readers. Or a seasoned blogger continually seeking inspiration for quality blog posts.
This guidebook is designed to help you utilize your own images on your blog or website.

While free image sites abound, there are limitations to using so-called “free” images. Gone are the days when bloggers can innocently copy and paste an image from the web and paste it into their blog post.

What will you get out of this guide?

In each chapter I give easy but important tips for maximizing the use of images on your blog’s website and within each blog post.

Seven informative chapters walk you through–

  • the importance of using images;
  • the real dangers of using others’ copyrighted images;
  • easy ways to edit your images using free programs and apps;
  • building unending inspiration and content around your own images;
  • attracting readers with images used in quotations, blog link-ups, and other tools;
  • how social media sites link your images, and why you need them;
  • a list of image resources available.

After reading this short guidebook, you will want to grab your smart phone or inexpensive digital camera and start taking photos!

The most recent review for the book

This is perfect for a new blogger like me because the author lays out her tips very clearly and I was able to make changes to my new website. My website already feels more professional and I have a better idea how to attract more visitors now.

Read all the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Better-Blogging-Photography-Maximize-Images-ebook/dp/B01I2NNLRU

and Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Better-Blogging-Photography-Maximize-Images-ebook/dp/B01I2NNLRU

Read more reviews and follow Terri on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15575050.Terri_Webster_Schrandt

Connect to Terri via her blog: http://secondwindleisure.com/

A new book for the writing duo – Jaye Marie and Anita Dawes.. non-fiction this time....Lazy Days : The holiday of a lifetime… hot off the press today.

About the book

This was our very first holiday. Two women, four kids and two small dogs afloat on a rented boat, 40 years ago. Miles of rivers and waterways to explore. Could we survive for two weeks, or would we end up in a watery grave?

Find out how we survived the holiday and each other in Lazy Days!

Head over and buy the book: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Lazy-Days-lifetime-Anita-Dawes-ebook/dp/B077XX2TH1

and Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Lazy-Days-lifetime-Anita-Dawes-ebook/dp/B077XX2TH1

Books by Jaye Marie

A review for The Apple Blossom

I did wonder why there was a picture of apple blossom on the front cover of this book, which is a very short (14 pages) but factual story of the author’s thoughts and feelings on her diagnosis and treatment for breast cancer (the treatments are not described in too much detail). However, the significance of the apple blossom became apparent as I read on. I finished the book in 20 minutes, and can sympathise entirely with Jaye Marie’s dread of radiotherapy, as I underwent 30 of these treatments myself for a different type of cancer earlier this year.

I would have liked the book to have been a little bit longer, and would have liked to read more about the after-effects of radiotherapy and whether the author suffered from on-going tiredness and lymphoedema (swelling due to bad lymph drainage) for example. After-effects can linger for years, and it would be interesting to find out if radiotherapy for different types of cancers all give similar after-effects.

The book was well formatted, and I found only a couple of typos. Doctors, nurses and radiologists try their best to make us as comfortable as possible during our treatment, but at the end of the day a course of radiotherapy is something that ultimately augments a cancer sufferer’s capability to endure. We can take along CD’s to try and blot out the clicking of the tomography machine, but it is unfortunately an endurance test. Well done to Jaye Marie though, for passing the test with flying colours!

Read the reviews and and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Jaye-Marie/e/B00O2ZUFOK

and Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Jaye-Marie/e/B00O2ZUFOK

Read more reviews and follow Jaye Marie on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8638857.Jaye_Marie

Books by Anita Dawes

One of the recent reviews for The Scarlet Ribbon

It’s rare these days to find an original concept in fiction but Anita Dawes has created an unusual story here. Maggie has been knocked down by a car and is in a coma, aware of her surroundings but unable to communicate. While in the coma, she also occupies an alternate world somewhere between life and death. Here she meets David and Annie, two characters who will continue to haunt her when she emerges from her coma.

The novel is beautifully written and the characterization is strong; the reader is rooting for Maggie from the start. It took me a little while to get into this story but from the point Maggie comes out of her coma I couldn’t put it down. The whole premise is thought provoking and I’d particularly recommend it to people who are interested in concepts of the afterlife. In particular, the ending will stay with me for a long time.

Read the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Anita-Dawes/e/B0034NUE10/

And Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Anita-Dawes/e/B0034NUE10

Read more reviews and follow Anita on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6586480.Anita_Dawes

Connect to Jaye and Anita via their website http://jenanita01.wordpress.com

The final author today is Tina Frisco with Vampyrie:Origin of the Vampire and its most recent review.

About Vampyrie

What if vampires were not the undead, but rather the dying? What if there were two factions among vampires: the sustained and the unsustainable? And what if those factions were at war with one another over the life of a young woman who promised them a future? Vampyrie brings the myth of the vampire into the realm of possibility. Phoebe Angelina Delaney is a reluctant genius and compassionate hothead. She finds herself in a pitch-dark underground and doesn’t remember how she got there. Did she drink too much alcohol and wander off in a stupor, or was she kidnapped by a malicious element determined to make her life a living hell?

Sir Michael Alan David is a vampire – an enigma, charismatic and mysterious, who weaves in and out of Phoebe’s life. Does he intend to use his title as a ruse to draw her closer to an unearthly fate, or is he a cloak-and-dagger knight in shining armor? Too many secrets have been kept for too long. Phoebe must unravel the mystery in order to survive. Two major characters from the author’s first novel, Plateau join forces with Phoebe to battle the demons in Vampyrie.

And here is the most recent  review for Vampyrie

Frisco is a gifted writer who knows how to snare the interest of her reader from the very first page and to maintain that interest until the very last word. Although it is a vampire story with a unique twist, it is so much more. I was fascinated with the growth and maturation that the main character, Phoebe, experienced throughout the story. As I reached the end of the book I realized that this tale of human growth wasn’t just Phoebe’s, it applies to all of us as we struggle with self-awareness and acceptance. Frisco teaches us that our hearts, minds, spirits, and souls contribute to this journey of awareness and fulfillment and that none of us journey alone. This is not just another vampire story. I highly recommend this great book.

 

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Vampyrie-Origin-Vampire-Tina-Frisco/dp/154112720X

and Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/VAMPYRIE-Origin-Vampire-Tina-Frisco-ebook/dp/B01N2UYDG6

Also by Tina Frisco

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Tina-Frisco/e/B009NMOFNY

And on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Tina-Frisco/e/B009NMOFNY

Read more reviews and follow Tina on Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6497599.Tina_Frisco

Connect to Tina via her blog and website: https://tinafrisco.com/

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you will explore the authors and their books further.  Thanks Sally

 

 

 

Smorgasbord Invitation – Most Viewed Author Interview – Tina Frisco with a book reading.


I was thrilled to have so many of you over for the Sunday Interview series .. and this year it was the Author Book Reading and Interview.. My first guest was Tina Frisco and the post is still being viewed, making it the highest viewed interview of the year. I have taken the liberty of updating the reviews today.

Sally's Cafe and BookstoreWelcome to the series that is connected to Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore. After setting the cafe up last year I intend now to use as the focal point for all book promotions here on Smorgasbord. Once in the cafe, authors can be updated in the twice weekly posts with their new releases and also excellent reviews… but they can now also do a book reading and interview as they might do in a real bookstore.

I can think of no better author to kicke this new series off than Tina Frisco who is so supportive of all who follow her blog and on social media.  She is a friend, confidente and at times our conscience. Multi-talented with a deep understanding about all aspects of humanity, Tina is an example to us all of how we should treat people and animals.

This is intended to be an interactive interview with you the reader and it would be wonderful if you could therefore ask Tina your questions in the comments section. Tina will respond to those over the next couple of days.

First something about Tina Frisco

Tina Frisco is an author, singer-songwriter, RN, activist, and student of shamanism. Born in Pennsylvania USA, she attended nursing school in New York and lives in California. She began writing as a young child and received her first guitar at age 14, which launched her passion for music and songwriting. She has performed publicly in many different venues. Her publishing history includes book reviews; essays; articles in the field of medicine; her début novel, PLATEAU; her children’s book, GABBY AND THE QUADS; and her latest novel, VAMPYRIE. She enjoys writing, reading, music, dancing, arts and crafts, exploring nature, and frequently getting lost in working crossword puzzles.

Vampyrie: Origin of the Vampire

Welcome Tina and thank you so much for starting off this new series.

If one of your books was selected to be made into a film; who would you like to play your main character and why?

If my latest novel, Vampyrie, were made into a film, I’d want Julia Stiles to play Phoebe Delaney. She’s a strong dramatic as well as comedic actor, two qualities most evident in Phoebe.

Although Ms. Stiles is a bit older than Ms. Delaney, she has a youthful appearance. However, she’d have to be willing to dye her hair red and wear green contact lenses!

Changing the appearance of a novel’s protagonist in a script for the performing arts somehow invalidates the work for me. This was done when The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown was brought to the big screen, and I spent a good third of the film trying to reconcile the novel’s protagonist with the one before me in the theatre.

My second choice to play Phoebe Delaney would be Molly C. Quinn who played Alexis in the TV series, Castle.

Which four famous guests would you ask to a dinner party and why?

Tina Turner – American-born recording artist, dancer, actress, and author. Music and strong female energy are vital to the survival of humankind. Tina Turner is the epitome of a strong female and dynamic performing artist.

The Dalai Lama – Tibetan holy man and government leader. The world is in dire need of a formidable and compassionate spiritual presence exemplifying nonviolence and absolute awareness.

Woman Chief – warrior and chief of the Crow people. The energy of the Earth is female. As patriarchal dominance comes to an end, strong female guidance is the imperative for transitioning into the Golden Age of Enlightenment.

Oscar Wilde – Irish playwright, novelist, essayist, and poet known for his ostentatious dress, brilliant conversation, and biting wit. Humor is to thriving what breathing is to life.

These four would make for some lively dinner conversation, don’t you think?

If you were offered three wishes to change the world, what would they be?

1. Destroy all weapons of war and prevent their re-creation by dismantling multinational corporations.

2. Encourage worldwide development of sustainable energy, organic farming, and natural forest conservation.

3. Teach children compassion and tolerance for diversity by establishing a weekly gathering, across the globe, where people of different cultures and religions sit quietly across from one another in pairs and do nothing but look into each other’s eyes for five minutes.

plateau-cover-7I was reading through the reviews for Plateau and it is clear that everyone who read the book was touched deeply in one way or another. Here is an extract from one of the reviews

You have the choice to nourish or you have the choice to destroy with your power,” is the statement made by Ruby Plenty Chiefs, and which begins the Prologue of Plateau, a superbly written book by Tina Frisco. In this spiritually guided story, the readers are introduced to the E’Ghali culture and its people in the experience shared by a young indigenous womon, W’Hyani, and guidance of the Power Deck Cards. In these pages, it is learned that to gain insight and meaning of life, one must observe and adhere to the value of each card; in doing this, it allows the individual to connect their physical life and their spiritual life on a conscious plateau.

Can you tell us the inspiration behind the story and also how long it took you to research the story?

In late 2011, I became very disheartened by the number of documentaries focusing on apocalyptic interpretations of prophesies in relation to the 2012 winter solstice. December 21st of that year marked the end of a 5,126-year-long cycle in the Mesoamerican Long Count calendar. For the Maya, the end of a long cycle was always a cause for celebration. But many people today allowed fear to drive their thinking and determined humankind would be annihilated when that 5,126-year cycle ended.

In the early 1980s, I became apprenticed to a medicine woman. I knew the world was not going to end on 12-21-12 and felt compelled to inject a message of hope into our collective unconscious. Plateau was my way of doing that. No research was needed, as the story derived solely from what I’d learned during my apprenticeship, aided by my fertile imagination! This was not the case for Vampyrie, however. Extensive research was required; much more than I’d anticipated.

Apart from humanity you also consider animals to be very much part of our spiritual journey. Can you tell us of any particular experience you have had that touched you deeply and demonstrated this belief?

Much of my compassion for nonhuman animals stems from childhood abuse, both witnessed and experienced, perpetrated against both humans and nonhumans.

A neighbor family of my Sicilian grandmother had a dog who was neglected to the point of abuse. He was kept outside on a short leash, his fur was matted and knotted, and he had a terrible odor about him. Whenever anyone other than immediate family approached, he would growl, bark ferociously, bare his teeth, and eventually foam at the mouth. I felt as much compassion as I felt terror. I knew he behaved the way he did because he was in great pain, both physically and emotionally. I wanted to hug and care for him while simultaneously wanting to flee for my life. One doesn’t forget an experience like that.

It is clear that love and understanding lie at the heart of your writing. Particularly in your posts on your own blog and as a guest. Difficult I know, but could you give us the message you would like spread around the world to achieve peace and unity…. In around 100 words?

If humankind is to survive on planet Earth, we must keep our hearts open. If we close them to one, we close them to all. So no matter how painful, we must keep our hearts open and act from love instead of reacting from fear. We must practice gratitude and compassion within every moment and with every breath. In so doing, we will elevate the human species to a higher consciousness, facilitating peace, unity, and love.

Tina will now give us a book reading from her book Vampyrie.

She struggled to open her eyes against a light that glared with penetrating force. When she realized she was in a strange environment, she bolted from the sofa on which she was lying and ran across the room, knocking into several pieces of furniture along the way. She found the nearest wall, glued her back to it and pressed her hands flat against the surface, ready to spring on a moment’s notice.

“Where in the hell am I?” she shouted to whoever might be listening.

“You are in The Haven,” a voice answered from across the room.

She spun her head in its direction and squinted to adjust her vision. A lean-figured man was sitting in a chair with a book on his lap. He appeared to be in his early forties, with chestnut hair greying at the temples and parted to one side.

“Well how in the hell did I get here?”

“You fainted. I carried you.”

“Fainted? I don’t faint. I’m not the fainting type. And what’s The Haven? Where is it? And who in the hell are you?”

The synapses in her brain fired so quickly that she barely kept pace with her thoughts.

“Forgive my lack of etiquette, madam. I am Sir Michael Allan David. I found you lost in the catacombs and brought you to my dwelling. It is called The Haven, for it is the refuge of The Vampyrie.”

“Vampyrie? What in the hell is a vampyrie?’

“I will tell you all you need to know when I return.” He stood and placed his book and reading glasses on the small table next to his chair. “Now excuse me for a moment while I leave to prepare us some libation.”

Phoebe opened her mouth to respond, but before she could utter a word, he quickly added, “And I would be greatly obliged if you would cease using the word ‘hell’ in every other sentence. Cursing does not become you.”

Then he disappeared out of sight.

Not to be outwitted, Phoebe shouted, “And I would be greatly obliged if you would cease calling me madam. ‘Ms.’ is the correct form of address nowadays.”

She shook her head hard from side to side, attempting to clear her mind. Libation, cease, obliged, dwelling – who talks like that nowadays? And catacombs . . . in North America? The more she questioned the legitimacy of this man, the more she questioned the reality of her situation. As her thoughts collided with one another, she teetered on the brink of overload.

In an effort to wake up from what she hoped was a nightmare, she shook her head hard several more times. It didn’t work. She closed her eyes and repeated the action; but when she opened them again, the scenery hadn’t changed. This was no dream. She was where she was and had better get a grip.

Within that moment of decided resignation, it dawned on her it would be wise to orient to her surroundings in case she needed to make a quick exit. Her eyes darted around the room, looking for doors and windows. It seemed as though she’d entered a time warp.
The furniture was beyond antique, with frayed upholstery and wood that was scratched and worn. Wall hangings were faded black-and-white or sepia prints. A large threadbare tapestry hung over the fireplace. Lamps were cast iron with sickly yellow shades. The wallpaper peeled at the corners and along several of the seams. All windows were covered by heavy drapes drawn from one side to the other, making them appear like oppressive shrouds rather than potential exits.

Had she stepped into a Charles Dickens novel? And where were the doors? Were there any aside from the one through which her captor had departed?

And then, of course, there was Sir Michael. He spoke with a British accent, but Vampyrie sounded Norse. Not only did his home look like a bedraggled portrait of antiquity, he himself looked like a relic. His grey suit bordered on threadbare, and he wore an ascot. His cheeks were a little sunken and very pale. He had an odd odor about him; not repulsive, just unrecognizable, almost mysterious. She wasn’t afraid of him, yet she thought she should be.

The pitch-black, moss-filled tunnels were bad enough, but this place was downright creepy; the kind of creepy that makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand up and run for cover. What on earth had she gotten herself into? This couldn’t possibly be the home of the gentleman who’d rescued her. Yet she knew he and the ash-white token of a man she just met in this room were one and the same.

Her knight in shining armor was at best a vestigial man, a remnant of the past.

Here is one of the reviews for Vampyrie.

A brilliant theory that Frisco brings to this story – good vs. bad (rogue) vampires and a story that takes us through fast-paced action with the protagonist, the impetuous Phoebe who finds herself abducted by a vampire in the beginning of this curious tale.

Although the story revolves around the theme of vampires, the story is a twist on the vampire theory, bringing unpredictable action with the characters who find themselves entangled in this alternative world of secret vampires.

Throughout the story we’ll find ourselves wondering why Phoebe’s father kept their vampire history secret, and why did her mother mysteriously disappear out of her life when Phoebe was a young child. But the events that follow the story keep us engaged and waiting to find out about – The Origin of the Vampyrie and how all the characters involved came to be part of the Vampyrie circle. Through this journey Phoebe discovers who she really is as we watch her grow through the learning process.

This book is far from the average vampire story containing blood and gore, but a delight to read with Frisco’s quick witted writing and her uncanny knack to be able to insert love and compassion even in a story about vampire lore. A recommended read.

Also by Tina Frisco

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Read all the Reviews and buy all the books: https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B009NMOFNY

Here is how you can connect to Tina on her website and social media.

Website ~ http://tinafrisco.com
Amazon ~ http://hyperurl.co/3vme2a
Facebook ~ https://www.facebook.com/TinaFrisco.Author
Twitter ~ http://bit.ly/14VXY49
LinkedIn ~ http://linkd.in/1aAGwXl
Google+ ~ http://bit.ly/1Fc1Uzn
Goodreads ~ http://bit.ly/165vmVp

I hope you have enjoyed this reminder of the interview in July this year… thanks for dropping in.. Thanks Sally

Smorgasbord Christmas Laughter Academy – Time to get the party started.


With only a couple of days left.. with all your shopping completed!!! It is time to put your feet up and enjoy the next three days with family, friends and humour… Merry Christmas and Feliz Navidad…

 

 

Please feel free to share the smiles.. thanks Sally

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Christmas Book Fair – Tina Frisco, Hugh W. Roberts and Darlene Foster


Welcome to the first of the Christmas Book Fairs where authors in the Cafe and Bookstore can feature one of their books and their favourite review. Choosing gifts for family and friends can be a challenge, but most people like books; I know that I do and have a long list that I have given David for his gift run. Let’s meet today’s authors.

The first author is Tina Frisco with Vampyrie:Origin of the Vampire and her selected review from the wonderful feedback she has received for the book.

About Vampyrie

What if vampires were not the undead, but rather the dying? What if there were two factions among vampires: the sustained and the unsustainable? And what if those factions were at war with one another over the life of a young woman who promised them a future? Vampyrie brings the myth of the vampire into the realm of possibility. Phoebe Angelina Delaney is a reluctant genius and compassionate hothead. She finds herself in a pitch-dark underground and doesn’t remember how she got there. Did she drink too much alcohol and wander off in a stupor, or was she kidnapped by a malicious element determined to make her life a living hell?

Sir Michael Alan David is a vampire – an enigma, charismatic and mysterious, who weaves in and out of Phoebe’s life. Does he intend to use his title as a ruse to draw her closer to an unearthly fate, or is he a cloak-and-dagger knight in shining armor? Too many secrets have been kept for too long. Phoebe must unravel the mystery in order to survive. Two major characters from the author’s first novel, Plateau join forces with Phoebe to battle the demons in Vampyrie.

And here is one of the outstanding reviews for Vampyrie

I have always had a fondness for Vampire stories. It began with Dracula. Twilight was mesmerizing. Vampire Diaries captivated me from the start, and The Originals, my favorite, enthralled me. Vampyrie is a complex, contemporary page-turner that I couldn’t put down! Phoebe, the protagonist is a strong, intelligent, compassionate and fearless character and her passion and perseverance make her a compelling character. What makes this story especially fascinating is the in-depth science, woven in with such elegance that it never detracts from the thrilling suspense. I can totally see this book becoming the next off-the-chart TV series. Well done Tina Frisco

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Vampyrie-Origin-Vampire-Tina-Frisco/dp/154112720X

and Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/VAMPYRIE-Origin-Vampire-Tina-Frisco-ebook/dp/B01N2UYDG6

Also by Tina Frisco

Read all the reviews and buy the books: https://www.amazon.com/Tina-Frisco/e/B009NMOFNY

And on Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Tina-Frisco/e/B009NMOFNY

Read more reviews and follow Tina on Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6497599.Tina_Frisco

Connect to Tina via her blog and website: https://tinafrisco.com/

The next author is Hugh W. Roberts whose short story collection Glimpses would always be a welcome gift at any time of the year.

About Glimpses

After publishing some of his short stories on his blog, Hugh W. Roberts, who suffers from dyslexia, received numerous requests to publish his short stories in a book.

Here, at last, are 28 short stories that will take your mind on a rollercoaster of a ride into worlds that conceal unexpected twists and turns.

‘Glimpses’ allows the reader a peek into the lives of everyday people who are about to have life lead them on an unpredicted path. From a mysterious deadly iPad app, to a hole in the fence that is not all it seems, to a strange lipstick that appears to have a life of its own, you will encounter terror, laughter, sadness, shock and many other emotions on journeys which promise a thrilling and gripping climax.

If you are a lover of shows such as ‘The Twilight Zone’ and ‘Tales Of The Unexpected’, then you’re in for a real treat with this first collection of short stories from Hugh.

Dare you take a glimpse into the lives of these unsuspecting characters?

And here is one of the five star reviews for this wonderful short story collection

I was excited to begin reading Glimpses because recently, I have found a new love for short stories – especially written by a British author. I lived in England for a few years back in the early 1980’s, and I think my love of the country and people is rekindled by these stories. I could quickly read a few stories each night which fit my schedule perfectly. The author writes in numerous genres which I also found to be a pleasant surprise.

Glimpses literally gives the reader a brief look into the lives of everyday individuals who experience anything but the ordinary. Each story leads you into a different situation with different characters. Although, there is a four-part murder mystery included that I found to be an extraordinary read. I almost fell out of bed with the final reveal in the serial!

One of my favorite stories was The Last Train to Aldwych, where Grace Simmons meets the same ghost every year on the same date on the London Underground. I shivered in delight anticipating how the story would be told. Instead, I found a surprise ending that left me excited to read more. In fact, each tale had a twist or surprise which made for a satisfying read.

A couple of the stories evoked scary memories of Rod Serling and the Twilight Zone, a show I had watched as a teenager. Don’t be surprised if you don’t hear the haunting melody of the introduction music playing in your mind as you read. I know, I did!

I received this book as a gift from the author. I loved it so much, I had to share my review. I enjoyed this collection of short stories and if you love your fiction filled with a hint of suspense along with some “shock and awe,” Glimpses is the book for you.

MY RATING:

Character Believability: 5    Flow and Pace: 5      Reader Engagement: 5

Reader Enrichment: 5     Reader Enjoyment: 5     Overall Rate: 5 out of 5 stars

Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Glimpses-Hugh-W-Roberts-ebook/dp/B01N757S3P

And on Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Hugh-W.-Roberts/e/B01N40ZABP

Read more reviews and follow Hugh on Goodreads:https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16123684.Hugh_W_Roberts

Hugh W. Roberts

Connect to Hugh via his blog: https://hughsviewsandnews.com/

And now a book for children and Young Adults who have the travel bug. Here is Amanda In New Mexico: Ghosts in the Wind by Darlene Foster.

About Amanda in New Mexico: Ghosts in the Wind

Amanda Ross is on a school trip to Taos, New Mexico with several of her fellow creative students. Join Amanda, Cleo and their funny friend, Caleb, as they visit an ancient and beautiful landscape where a traditional hacienda, an ancient pueblo, and a haunted and spooky hotel all hold secrets to a wild and violent past. Does Cleo really see ghosts? Can Amanda escape the eerie wind that follows her everywhere? Perhaps the Day of the Dead will reveal the mysteries of Taos in this latest adventure of Amanda’s travels.

One of the recent review for Amanda in New Mexico on Goodreads

Oct 07, 2017 Serenity rated it really liked it
This is the sixth book in the series but the first I’ve read. I am intrigued and I’m going to try and find the first book. I think my students might like it. I requested this book from NetGalley because it can be tough to find middle grade novels set in NM. I am not a big ghost story reader so I can’t compare this to other scary books, but aside from Wimpy Kid and Minecraft scary books are my most requested. I will probably purchase this for my library.

Amanda seems like a pretty nice kid. She tries to be a good friend, gets along well with her peers, and is a good student. The kids in this book have a lot of freedom considering they’re in middle school, but they’re also pretty responsible and generally do what they’re supposed to. This book touches on mental illness, grief, and compassion.

Read the other reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/Amanda-New-Mexico-Ghosts-Travels/dp/1771681209

And Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Amanda-New-Mexico-Ghosts-Travels/dp/1771681209

Also by Darlene Foster

Read the reviews and buy all of Darlene’s books: https://www.amazon.com/Darlene-Foster/e/B003XGQPHA

and Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Darlene-Foster/e/B003XGQPHA

Read more reviews and follow Darlene on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3156908.Darlene_Foster

Connect to Darlene via her website: www.darlenefoster.ca

My hope is to feature as many authors in the Cafe and Bookstore as possible over the next few weeks. The Christmas Book Fair will be posted four times a week and perhaps more with one at the weekend.. Here is a post with all the available Christmas Promotions so far and you can promote your books as part of the Christmas Archive series too.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/11/24/starting-monday-27th-november-smorgasbord-free-christmas-book-promotions/

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/11/25/smorgasbord-posts-from-your-christmas-archives-the-custom-and-origins-of-christmas-crackers-from-a-bit-about-britain/

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you will add these books to your gift list. Sally