I love a good coffee shop–comfy seating, drinks in warm mugs, ambient conversation and that lingering smell of fresh coffee. It’s the perfect setting for a romance and this week I read two novellas about coffee shop owners who fall for the person delivering their baked goods.
Lisa “Sully” “Sullivan may not have grown up in the small southern town of Sea Port but she’s made a place for herself as the owner of Sully’s, the town’s only coffee shop. She especially looks forward to her weekly deliveries from Bria, the cute baker’s assistant who always brings her something sweet. Bria’s been secretly pining for Sully too and when Sully asks her out their happily ever after feels inevitable. But it could all be over before it starts when a decades-old small town secret threatens to pull them apart.
I super enjoyed this novella. I love Jackson’s small town of Sea Port , it is a majority Black small town and has everything you want in a fictional town; festivals, quirky local businesses, a gossip-y knitting club…a female-only illegal speakeasy. As you do. But it’s not all so quaint. We check in on the characters from previous novellas who have shall we say…have other interests. Jackson is a master of blending kink with sweet.
Small Town Secrets is everything the title promises. and brimming with sweetness and love in all its forms. I can’t wait to read more from Jackson. – ★★★★
In Delivered Fast we travel across the country to Portland, Oregon where 35-year-old Chris O’Neal, the broody emotionally distant owner of the vegan coffee shop The People’s Cup, can’t stop thinking about Lance Degrassi the sunny extroverted college student who delivers his weekly baked goods.
The set up for these two novellas sound very similar but I had a completely different reaction to this one. I wanted to like this book since Albert is rec’d a lot and Jess gave a positive review to another one her books but this story just didn’t do it for me.
I found it boring and couldn’t invest in the relationship. The story is told in first person which is usually my jam but it’s only from Chris’s POV so I had no idea why Lance would be attracted to Chris or what was going on in his head. Chris spends so much of this book sad and brooding alone. Lance is shown to have a richer life with dreams and goals he is working towards. I wish we could have followed him around.
Now that I think about it, I guess this book read like a beat for beat example of the Manic Pixie Dream Girl trope. Lance was more of an idea than a person and it just didn’t work for me. – ★★ .5