I was skeptical before I started reading, expecting something along similar lines to Elaine's Woolworths Girls series, just in a tearoom, not a shop. Although there was a touch of familiarity about it, there was also quite a collection of interesting characters that really made this story stand out.
It's an unexpected piece of writing, in a time when we are well used to being able to predict what comes next, or at least read speculation from characters in the story. This is a novel with more interesting characters than I expected, and more action too.
Mr. Cardew, before his fall from grace, was a resident of Seaview Guest House, a place many of the interesting characters, such as Polish-born Anya, and fisherwoman Mildred calls home. It's run by Flora with help from her daughter Rosie and provides a comforting backdrop to the action.
The Lyon's teashops where Rosie and her friends worked was another key focus of the plot, although I think this was the only slight downfall in an otherwise excellent novel. I wanted to feel immersed in the world of Lyon's teashops, just as I did with Woolworth's in Elaine's other novels, but it just didn't happen for me.
Apart from that, I was fully engaged with the plot with no temptation to skip pages, and enjoyed the amount of action in every chapter. There are no page fillers here, just a....?
a somewhat aspirational love interest, so if you revelled in the movie star boyfriend in The Butlins Girls, then look out for Captain Hargreaves.
|Have You Read Any Of These?|
The Teashop Girls is out now, published by Pan Macmillan. Many Thanks to the publishers, Elaine Everest, and ed pr for the opportunity to review this novel, it's been a great read. Apologies also for the delay getting this up, I got swallowed up into an all-consuming freelancing black hole, but I'd rather read and devour every page, and put up the review how I want it to be. Find out more about the Pan Macmillan roster here.