A Stella Review: Love & Tea Bags (Pink Rock Series #1) by C.F. White

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RATING 3,75 out of 5 stars

Fate can be written in a tea bag too.

Mark Johnson is hitting his forties and is stuck in a rut.

He’s had the same boring office job for ten years, with no motivation or inclination to change it. The same crumbling house for ten years, with no cash or know-how to fix it. And the same Facebook status for five years—it’s complicated. It isn’t. He’s single. He just doesn’t want to correct it. That would be admitting defeat.

The day a tea bag splats onto his face whilst he’s emptying the dregs of his morning cuppa at Macy’s Tea Shoppe is the one that makes him question each of his current life choices…the tea bag and that the shop is currently being run by one rather friendly, rather hunky, but rather young Australian named Bradley Summers.

Tea has never tasted so good.

I picked this new release because the title and te cover interested me and the blurb sounded good too, plus I’m always on the lookout for new to me authors and I had never read CF white before. I read Love & Tea Bags and liked it a lot.

Mark and Bradley were so different, still from the beginning it was clear they were made for each other. I fell for Mark so easily and quickly, since the first chapter I found his smart mouth so endaring, sometimes a little cynical, moreover too funny.  Instead Bradley was so young and firm in his wish to woo Mark and took him from his boring life.  I appreciated how brave and stubborn at the same time both of them were; when finally Mark understood the amazing opportunity at finding a HEA he had, I had laughed and cheered on them so much, my cheeks hurt. This novel showed how literally life can change when you meet love, it is a dreamy concept, but not so far from reality.

Love & Tea Bags was a great reading, engaging, with interesting characters, with some baggage on their shoulders. I didn’t give it an higher rating cause I didn’t feel satisfied ,I wanted a little more, especially I missed Bradley POV, I think it was necessary to better enjoy the reading. That said, this is just the first installment in a new seris, I can’t wait for more.

The cover art by Erin Dameron-Hill is cute and well done, I like the colors and the font a lot.

Buy Links:  Amazon |  Pride Publishing

BOOK DETAILS

ebook, 307 pages

Published July 16th 2019 by Pride Publishing

ISBN13 9781786517951

Edition Language English

A Lucy Prerelease Review : Love & Tea Bags (Pink Rock Series #1) by C.F. White

Standard

Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Fate can be written in a tea bag too. 

Mark Johnson is hitting his forties and is stuck in a rut. 

He’s had the same boring office job for ten years, with no motivation or inclination to change it. The same crumbling house for ten years, with no cash or know-how to fix it. And the same Facebook status for five years—it’s complicated. It isn’t. He’s single. He just doesn’t want to correct it. That would be admitting defeat. 

The day a tea bag splats onto his face whilst he’s emptying the dregs of his morning cuppa at Macy’s Tea Shoppe is the one that makes him question each of his current life choices…the tea bag and that the shop is currently being run by one rather friendly, rather hunky, but rather young Australian named Bradley Summers. 

Tea has never tasted so good. The very best part of this book Mark’s inner musings.  He is pretty much a mess – stuck in a job that is going nowhere, in a house that is falling apart around his ears, listening to a mother who is just vile, and really only having one really good thing he can depend on.  Tea.  “Tea.  There was the answer to everything.  Everything.”  It is this good thing that leads him to Macy’s Tea Shoppe, owned by his one real friend in the world, Macy. 
“Macy was possibly the only one in Mark’s life who seemed to accept him for who he was.” He is 39 and sometimes talks like he is 79.  “…services we have to offer such a young whippersnapper like yourself.”

When he finds out his roof has to be fixed and he doesn’t have the money to do so, he sets off for Macy’s to drown his sorrows in tea.  After basically venting his spleen to Macy in the back of the shop, it turns out the one listening isn’t Macy, but her young cousin, Bradley.  Bradley, the Australian Adonis who is covering for Macy while she is with her parents and who happens to be a stripper.  A 21-year-old free spirit stripper.  The Adonis who forgets to take the tea bag out of the cup he serves Mark, which splats onto Mark’s face.  And so they meet.

Most of the story is Mark trying to find reasons why he can’t be with Bradley, why Bradley doesn’t really want to be with him, why friends only is the way to go and how he can ignore the longings of his own heart.  Someone has done a real number on Mark and he has lost all self confidence and sense of self worth. 

Bradley is sunny, sweet and YouTube famous as a stripper.  He believes in reading tea leaves, of all things and he is all about adventure and living life to the fullest. He is also in England short term.  Mark doesn’t want to have anything with Bradley.  Especially when he remembers Bradley is Macy’s cousin.  It’s complicated.

Some times Mark just made me laugh.  His fear sent him to the attic of his house to confront some old ghosts, after having sex with Bradley.  “It seemed for the second time that evening he was going to enter into a hole that scared the utter crap out of him.”

As secondary characters, Macy is really supportive and likeable but Damian steals the show. He and Mark have a physical history but now are just friends and Damian is a good one.  He styles Mark to get him out of the frump and pushes him to understand how good he is.  I really hope Damian gets a story, he deserves one. 

Mark’s parents are complicated beings, Dad lost all their money gambling in a mid-life crisis and Mom does whatever necessary to maintain appearances.  One of the most poignant scenes I’ve read in recent times is Mark’s conversation with his dad about dad’s regrets.  It was so heart breaking.

The ending is very rom-com and was very sweet and funny, if over the top.

Cover art is really pretty spot on with the blond Adonis and the tea loving Mark.

Sales Links Pre Order:  Pride Publishing | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 307 pages
Expected publication: July 16th 2019 by Pride Publishing
ISBN13 9781786517951
Edition Language English