January 28, 2015

Review: The Teashop on the Corner

The Teashop on the Corner
The Teashop on the Corner by Milly Johnson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was such a charming little book. I'd never read anything by and never heard of Milly Johnson before, so I didn't know what to expect. I assumed it would be a light and fluffy romance. It was much more than that: yes it is a romance, but it also has some dramatic elements to it. Even though there are some happy endings, they're not cheesy at all; they're quite realistic. And not everyone is fortunate to get a 'happily ever after' ending. The book totally reminds me of the movie Love Actually. Several characters are introduced at the beginning, and the chapters alternate between the different plots. But then, some way or another all the characters find their ways to the Teashop on the Corner, so their stories intertwine. New friendships and love relationships develop. And at this point, the book started to make me think about what I call the Facebook phenomenon. I have always thought that Facebook is actually a "Fakebook", meaning that everyone on it pretends to have a perfect life, even though everybody has lots of skeletons in their closets. But online you can pretend not to have any. By contrast, in real life you can only hide your skeletons temporarily. But real friendship/love is about loving each other with/despite our skeletons. All the characters have their skeletons, and of course they try to hide them, but life forces them to reveal their secrets. But thankfully they have people around them who don't mind their skeletons at all. And those are the moments when highly sensitive people (like me) start crying, and then cry and cry... (And then the book becomes a favourite...)

What I also liked about the book that there are lots of literary references (especially to Jane Austen), which I totally enjoyed. And the teashop is the teashop of my dreams. A teashop where there are some fantastic desserts and you can buy stationery (bags, bookmarks, notebooks etc.) related to classics. (If I won the lottery, I'd totally open a teashop like this.)

But most important, I loved each and every character (except of course the villains). However, my favourites were (whose not, I wonder) Molly and Harvey, who were apparently based on real characters. So, let me finish of this little review with my favourite quote (attributed to Harvey), which is also the last sentence of the book: "It’s never too late to have a happy ending".

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