When Mary, my mother-in-law up in Yorkshire, told me she was going to include a book with my Christmas parcel, she said I was going to love it. And she was not wrong: I did love "The Teashop on the Corner" by Milly Johnson.
Don't be put off by the "Chick Lit" cover design. Yes, it is "light reading" and nothing high-brow, but it is well written - much, much better than a lot of the "light reading" I have been doing lately. In fact, there are times when this book has strongly reminded me of Frances Garrood's "Dead Ernest" and "Basic Theology for Fallen Women", both of which I truly enjoyed. (You can find my reviews for these books by clicking on the titles here in the post.)
The recipe - tested and proven, but nearly always interesting - for the story is quickly told: A group of people who normally would not come across each other, let alone form friendships, are thrown together by chance. In this case. "chance" is visiting a newly opened teashop.
Soon, circumstances make the customers who first come in on their own start talking - to the lady who runs the teashop as well as to each other. With their relationships developing, things come to light about each of the main characters, and with one exception, they all turn out to have something in their past (and even present) that nobody guessed at.
The old adage "Nothing is at it seems" is true for the people in this story, and I am sure we all know similar people (or maybe even are one of them ourselves). Nearly everything that happens, and the decisions the characters take, are credible. The teashop is well described, as are other locations, without overdoing the details.
One can read such books merely to be entertained after a long day at the office, but one can also read the message the characters have for us. I like to do both.
You can find out about the author and her other books here.