Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Meet the Authors 2021 – #Thriller Ted Myers, #Mystery Nola Nash, #YA #Magic Doug Parker

Thanks, Sally Cronin, for showcasing my existence to your massive audience!

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Since the last series of meet the authors in June last year another 25 authors have joined the Cafe and Bookstore. This is an opportunity to get to know them and their books a little better. I will also include their blog social media links and it would be great if you could follow them there too.

Meet Ted Myers

After twenty years trembling on the brink of rock stardom and fifteen years working at record companies, Ted Myers left the music business–or perhaps it was the other way around–and took a job as a copywriter at an advertising agency. This cemented his determination to make his mark as an author. His nonfiction has appeared in Working Musicians (Harper Collins), By the Time We Got to Woodstock: The Great Rock ‘n’ Roll Revolution of 1969 (Backbeat Books), and Popular Music and Society.

His short stories have appeared online at Literally…

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Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Share an Excerpt from a previous books 2021- #Scifi #Cats – Fluffy’s Revolution by Ted Myers

My thanks to my new best friend, Sally Cronin, author and blogger extraordinaire. https://bit.ly/31TMunQ

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

We put a great deal of effort into promoting our new, recent and upcoming books but often our previous releases get sidelined.

In this latest series I am offering authors in theCafe and Bookstorea chance to promote an earlier book (not your most recent) by sharing an excerpt from the book of 500 words. At the end of the post you can find out how to participate.

Today Ted Myers shares and excerpt from his first novel, Fluffy’s Revolution, an animal-centric sci-fi adventure starring a cat. The book is not exclusively for kids (as the title may suggest), but appeals animal lovers of all ages. In this scene, the GABs’ (Genetially Altered Brain animals) hideout, an old warehouse, has been discovered by the cops, who are bent on destroying these unique animals…

About the book

“Brisk sci-fi futurism with a feline star and a positive outlook.” –KIRKUS REVIEWS

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Smorgasbord Blogger Daily – Wednesday 31st March 2021 – #Funnies The Story Reading Ape, #Cars Trev, #Decluttering Jane Sturgeon, #Bookoffer Ted Myers

Prolific blogger Sally Cronin comes through for me again!

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Here is a small selection of posts I have enjoyed over the last few days and also a book offer valid for tomorrow April 1st on allNON-US Amazon sites.

The first post is the regular Monday Funnies over at Chris, The Story Reading Ape and will brighten any day of the week..

Head over to enjoy all the funnies courtesy of the Story Reading Ape:
Story Reading Ape Funnies

The next post is from Trev on Silly Old Sod and is both entertaining and a lesson about not tinkering around in places you should not be…

About Me

Poof!! What Was That?

I’ve never been interested in cars, yet I’ve made a decent living out of the things.

Working Life

My working life consisted mainly of working in a huge car plant in the West Midlands, manufacturing those gas-guzzling four by four monsters. It was a great company to work…

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Smorgasbord Book Reviews – #1960s #Thriller – Paris Escapade by Ted Myers

Thank you, Sally Cronin, for the kind, perceptive, and spot-on review!

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

This second review this week  is for the1960s thriller – Paris Escapade by Ted Myers.

About the Book

In the summer of 1963, seventeen-year-old Eddie Strull goes off to Europe with a supervised camp group of New York Jewish kids. But Eddie, ever the rebel, has other plans. Eddie wants to live as an adult. A writer. Right now. When they arrive in Paris, the last stop before heading home, Eddie sneaks out of the youth hostel and disappears into the bohemian labyrinth of the Left Bank. There he encounters a colorful array of artists, writers, actors, and one extraordinary prostitute, who draws him into a risky adventure. Ultimately, he becomes a wanted man. Instant adulthood turns out to be much more than Eddie bargained for.

My review for the book February 6th 2021

A fast paced, adventure filled thriller set against the backdrop of 1960s Europe, and in particular…

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MADE FOR LOVE by Alissa Nutting (Book Review)

I was initially attracted by the Amazon blurb, which appears on the flyleaf of my edition.

The premise involves a lifelike sex doll belonging to Hazel’s septuagenarian father. Hazel, our protagonist, has serious self-esteem problems. In spite of this, she is courted by Byron, a young tech billionaire whose many inventions have revolutionized technology and scare the hell out of Hazel. As flattered as Hazel was when Byron first pursued her, the marriage did not turn out as she would have wished. She escapes from Byron’s clutches, but is surveilled wherever she goes, and with no money or employable skills, she has no choice but to invade the domain of her widowed father and Diane, his sex doll.

This was one of the few books I’ve found that actually made me laugh out loud. My literary hat is off to Alissa Nutting, a truly funny writer. I do have a couple of criticisms: 1) The various characters all seemed to speak with the same voice—everyone was very erudite and articulate, regardless of their background or station in life. 2) There were a lot of question marks where they were not needed. I know this was a conscious choice by the author, but still, I found them an unnecessary distraction.

In spite of these relatively minor complaints, I hail Alissa Nutting as a first-class wordsmith and I highly recommend this charming and funny book to everyone with a sense of humor.

Paris Escapade: Some Nice Reviews

When reviews start to come in for one’s latest book, the tendency is to wince and expect the worst. So far, with Paris Escpade, I have been pleasantly surprised. The reviews I’ve received so far are all extremely positive. Of course, it’s early yet, but I wanted to reprint the ones that have been published so far:

From Joseph Carrabis, author of The Augmented Man (5 Stars on Goodreads)

Myers’s opening line – “Even before we got on the plane, I was planning my getaway.” – defines this amazing novel. We know the viewpoint (1st person), the theme (v Self), the setting (modern…ish. A plane is mentioned), and the mood (the passive voice shows disdain, contempt).
That one line is the entire opening paragraph. The second paragraph gives you all the backstory you need and the third (and still on the first page) provides a delicious overdose of the character. I write “delicious overdose” because it’s completely over the top and so in the narrator’s tone, voice, and style that I laughed out loud (and this character read the same books I did? Wow!).
And the best part? Pay attention to that third paragraph and you have the entire, wonderful novel laid out for you.
Go for it!
(and fwiw, I found much of this book to be a future anthropologist’s/archaeologist’s goldmine, literally a guidebook to a time and place I remember well and nostalgically (much like Terry Melia’s Tales from the Greenhills )

From L.S. Papovitch, author of Undertones and The Arden (5 Stars on Goodreads)

Novel as entertainment. An absorbing series of mishaps. A bildungsroman that appeals to an escapist audience. T. M. Has the ability to put you right in the action. And I was not bored for a single page.

It reads fast, goes down smooth, and definitely radiates authenticity. The city of Paris (and other locales) feels lived in. Through the author’s mesmeric storytelling, I felt transported across several European countries. The cheeky first person narrator is young, naive, but intelligent and full of potential, towing overblown notions, and a perpetual novel-in-progress-cum-memoir. The adventure is an exercise in nostalgia for the 60s, and is infused with cool detachment. Also, simultaneously a comment and an homage to ex-pat Narcissistic literature.

Charming, witty, intrigued by every passing looker, our prototypical writer-narrator is surprising, and quick to decide on the next step in his self-directed destiny.

With convincing realism, including plenty of French phrases, with proper context to aid the reader’s understanding, a very detailed backdrop is set constantly in motion by the shifting fortunes of the main character. Tense urgency accompanies every scene, from the clash with pseudo intellectuals, amid the cultural innuendoes and the spectacle that always arises from Americans setting foot in Europe, to the hormone-fueled tangled plot wrapped up in crimes and prostitution.

The times I have spent in Europe made me wish I could stay, could run away and forge some alternate reality for myself. Yet, I see the sights, devour the food, and leave, always vowing to return. This book is the next best thing to taking a vacation, and acting on a few of those impulses. It was great fun to gallivant around Paris and the other gorgeous cities, to hang out with this eclectic crowd and mingle for a while with the vanished past.

From Gail Kaufman (5 Stars, Reedsy Discovery)

Myers’ ability to limn each scene so that you feel you are there and inside the head of the protagonist is remarkable.

This coming-of-age story surpassed my expectations. Written in the first person, I was immediately drawn into the escapades of a 17-year-old boy, Eddie Strull. It was as if I were reading a memoir, not a novel. When the story begins, Eddie has already planned his escape from New York via a supervised teen trip to Europe before venturing out on his own in Paris. The author weaves in real-life historic events, landmarks and tourist destinations. The book underscores the inevitability that we pay dues for the consequences of our actions. How we reconcile that reveals who we are.

“It’s not for me to forgive you Eddie. You have to forgive yourself.”

Early on, we learn about Eddie’s frustration with the hebetude of his life and his longing to be a writer. We know his plan. But we cannot anticipate the events that unfold as he befriends unique characters, falls in love, takes risks and perseveres on his mission. He makes decisions out of desperation and fear, ultimately making him a fugitive of the law. As he tenaciously and fortuitously continues to escape danger, the pages of this book turn swiftly. As Eddie stumbled from one multifarious situation to another, I wanted to catch him before he fell.

The ending threw me for a loop. I never saw it coming. It’s not the ending I was hoping for, and I am left with unanswered questions. I didn’t want to let Eddie go just yet, which is what makes the author’s style so appealing. The book is well-edited and a great read for all fans of coming-of-age novels. I think the story is particularly relatable to people familiar with a New York/Jewish background in the 50s and 60s who fantasized about or lived through the youthful backpack-through-Europe experience. This story takes you on that expedition albeit with many twists and turns.

Disclaimer: I received an Advanced Review Copy (ARC) on Reedsy Discovery.
Also posted on Reedsy Discovery.

From Edith Wairimu (5 Stars, Readers’ Favorite)

Paris Escapade by Ted Myers is an engrossing young adult novel that follows a teenager’s adventures in Paris and other parts of Europe. Eddie Strull, a Jewish teenager, is given a six-week camping trip in Europe by his parents for graduating high school. Eddie, who had always longed to free himself from the clutches of his parents’ authority, escapes from the group he is touring with and decides to build a life of his own in Paris. He falls in love with Martisse, a prostitute based in the French capital, who leads him into a deadly drug-related scheme and other dangerous events. Eddie spends time trying to evade the authorities across Europe until he decides to face his fate. As each adventure unfolds, Eddie begins to discover that maybe adulthood is not what he assumed it to be.

Unable to sit still and wait for things to happen, Eddie impatiently moves fast from one adventure to the next. His restlessness makes his story even more captivating. Told from Eddie’s perspective, Paris Escapade by Ted Myers offers extensive details of its main character. I also loved that other characters were compelling and had fascinating backgrounds. Their portrayal in the story is also realistic and the events that happen, though surprising and sometimes shocking, still feel believable. Set in 1960s Europe and the U. S., the novel also incorporates interesting details and events associated with the era. Many scenes are hilarious and they enliven the story. Paris Escapade by Ted Myers is a fast-paced novel that features exciting events and interesting characters.

From Eileen Jennifer (5 Stars on Goodreads)

A great read! Ted Myers delivers a sensitive coming-of-age tale with plenty of plot twists and fascinating characters. Don’t expect a romantic romp, although romance is woven throughout the story; Myers is unflinching in allowing his characters to drive the plot forward, often with difficult outcomes. Paris Escapade is an engaging read which allows the reader an inside glimpse of the burgeoning 60s counter-culture, from someone who was there.

Some of my beta readers have been unable to post their reviews on Amazon for some unknown reason, but if you read and like Paris Escapade, please try to post a positive review on Amazon (and Goodreads, if you’re on there).

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – New Release – #Fairies Teagan Riordain Geneviene, #Family James J. Cudney, #1960s #Thriller Ted Myers

Thanks again, Sally Cronin, for spreading my words.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Welcome to the Cafe and Bookstore update with new releases and reviews for authors on the shelves.

The first author today with a new release is Teagan Riordain Geneviene and the lovely fairy realm Thistledown – Midsummer Bedlam

About the book

Thistledown ― Midsummer Bedlam is a wildly whimsical tale of faeries. It was originally written for a grownup audience, but it is suitable for children ages eight and over.Thistledown is a world of color and light. It has faeries, hummingbirds, and ancient books of magic. Bedlam Thunder is a misfit faery who is afraid of heights. She is also a seer who has terrible visions of a parallel world devoid of color and brightness. The hate and darkness of that colorless world is seeping into Thistledown. Will Bedlam and her friends be able to save their home?Thistledown ― Midsummer Bedlam, with its radiant creatures and faeries will lift your…

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Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – Christmas Book Fair – New Author on the Shelves – #1960s #Thriller – Paris Escapade by Ted Myers

My thanks to Sally Cronin and the Smorgasbord Cafe & Bookstore for this lovely promotional boost.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

It is my pleasure to welcome Ted Myers to the shelves of the Cafe and Bookstore with his books. Today I am featuring his soon to be released novel set in the 1960s, Paris Escapade. The book is on pre-order on Amazon for December 17th and direct from publisher Black Rose Writing, with a 15% discount code (PREORDER2020)

About the Book

In the summer of 1963, seventeen-year-old Eddie Strull goes off to Europe with a supervised camp group of New York Jewish kids. But Eddie, ever the rebel, has other plans. Eddie wants to live as an adult. A writer. Right now. When they arrive in Paris, the last stop before heading home, Eddie sneaks out of the youth hostel and disappears into the bohemian labyrinth of the Left Bank. There he encounters a colorful array of artists, writers, actors, and one extraordinary prostitute, who draws him into a…

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Book Review: I’m Traveling Alone by Samuel Bjork

I was attracted by the title. The cover depicts a pair of little-girl feet dangling in midair. It seemed intriguing. But it turned out to be a Netflix-style murder mystery that centers on Norwegian detectives trying to solve a series of bizarre child murders.

Maybe the translator shares some of the blame—I’ve rarely read books translated from a foreign language for fear something will be lost in translation. For me, the writing was the weakest aspect of the book. It was all on a very simplistic, elemental level. (So is mine. But this, I’m afraid, was even worse). The story, however, was woven together well. It’s what my writing teacher called a braided plot. Each chapter started with a character’s name. The very short chapters bounced from thread to thread, each following the actions of a different character, all weaving together at the end.

I never review a book to which I would give less than three stars. This is because, if it doesn’t grab me in the first few chapters, I drop it and move on to something else. So it says something that I actually finished this one. I like this kind of stuff in movies. I’ve watched several foreign-made crime genre films on Netflix and other cable channels and enjoyed them. But from books I expect more. As an author-in-training, I’m always looking for authors who can teach me something about writing. I’m Traveling Alone did not do this. But the story grabbed me enough so I stuck with it to see how it comes out. I found the ending less-than-satisfying. No startling surprises.

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LOVE PARIS?

My new novel, PARIS ESCAPADE, will be published December 17, 2020, but it’s available for preorder NOW, only at Black Rose Writing: https://www.blackrosewriting.com/literary/parisescapade

Get a 15% discount by using the promo code PREORDER2020.

The book is a bit of memoir and a LOT of fiction. Here’s the blurb:

In the summer of 1963, seventeen-year-old Eddie Strull goes off to Europe with a supervised camp group of New York Jewish kids. But Eddie, ever the rebel, has other plans. Eddie wants to live as an adult. A writer. Right now. When they arrive in Paris, the last stop before heading home, Eddie sneaks out of the youth hostel and disappears into the bohemian labyrinth of the Left Bank. There he encounters a colorful array of artists, writers, actors, musicians, and one extraordinary prostitute who draws him into a risky adventure. Ultimately, he becomes a wanted man, sought across Europe by the police and the ruthless henchmen of Mme LaBrot, a trafficker in prostitutes and heroin. Instant Adulthood turns out to be much more than Eddie bargained for.

I, in fact, did go on a camping trip in Europe with a camp group of New York Jewish kids when I was sixteen in 1962. This formed the basis for the fantasy Paris Escapade. I made my protagonist a year older (seventeen) and the year 1963 — the year of JFK’s assassination and The Beatles. So this is more what I wish I had done rather than what I actually did. If I had gone when I was seventeen instead of sixteen, I might have actually pulled some of this crazy shit.

UPDATE: Just a few more days before the OFFICIAL PUBLICATION DATE, Dec. 17th, 2020. That’s when it will be available for order on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Goodreads, Black Rose Writing, and all the usual online book retailers.