Posted 20 hours ago

A Cuban Girl's Guide to Tea and Tomorrow

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in " The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's membership magazine, and in our weekly " Publishing This Week" newsletter. When Lila arrives in England, she’s quite (internally) critical of everything about it and I get that summer in Miami and summer in Hampshire, England would be very different. This is something that really frustrated me and I couldn't for the life of me fall in love with the rest of the book because of this. Waiting in this reception room with its potted plants and periwinkle wallpaper, I watch as family members are reunited by long-awaited visits, and once again separated by departures that come too soon.

It’s full of sweetness (with not too much sugar), a top notch romantic relationship, letting go friendships, but forming new ones, and tons of cooking and baking. I guess her immediate family sort of managed to accidentally dodge the whole thing so of course it doesn’t figure largely in her writing. I actually tried making pastelitos for Laura’s book launch, but it was such a mess because we don’t have guava paste here so I used guava jelly. And that forms a core part of her personality, taking what her grandmother has taught her and continuing it.And in the middle, my best friend admitted she’d been preparing for a two-year health aid post since November. But with the lack of sun, a grumpy inn cook, and a small town lacking Miami flavor (both in food and otherwise), what would be a dream trip for some feels more like a nightmare to Lila. The story was a little predictable but that’s kinda why I love cheesy Hallmark movies, it’s knowing everything will be just fine.

I haven't been outside of the US except for a vacation to Canada and I need to go to Europe so much.A Cuban Girl's Guide to Tea and Tomorrow is a tale so sweet, savory, and delightful that you'll long to travel, bake, and believe in the possibilities of love. I can see why Owl and Crow guests rave about the afternoon tea served in the parlor, but there’s too much sugar in this scone. Her sister finds Lila passed out miles from home, having run herself to exhaustion in the Miami heat, so her anxious family forces her to spend the summer in England with a friend of the family who owns an inn. And I don’t want to say that Lila’s reaction is disproportionate, because everyone responds to upheaval in different ways.

Lila Reyes doesn’t want to be in England—in fact, she’d rather be where she feels most at home, in her Abuela’s kitchen in Miami, carrying on her legacy.

Her debut novel, The Library of Lost Things, is still on my TBR list and Kindle, and I can’t wait for her third book, When We Were Them. Her worried family decides that she needs a change of scenery and ships her off to stay with extended family in England. I'm really triggered when authors, especially those promoting diversity use the name of the continent to mean one precise place.

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