Christmas with the Teashop Girls by Elaine Everest (Review)

Christmas with the Teashop Girls by Elaine Everest

Blurb

It is late 1940 and the war feels closer to home than ever for Rose Neville and her staff at the Lyon’s Teashop in Margate. The worry of rationing hangs overhead as the Nippies do their best to provide a happy smile and a hot cup of tea for their customers. When a heavy bombing raid targets the Kent coastline, Lyon’s is badly hit, throwing the future of the cafe into jeopardy.

The light in Rose’s life is her dashing fiancé Capt. Ben Hargreaves and planning their Christmas Eve wedding. But she must also plan to take two new step-daughters into her life and get on the right side of her wealthy mother-in-law, Lady Diana. Is Rose ready to become a mother so soon?

When Rose’s half-sister Eileen makes contact, it seems that Rose’s dreams of having a sibling are coming true at long last. But her friends begin to suspect that something is not right between Eileen and her husband: just what are they hiding?

As the Christmas Eve wedding draws near, the bombings intensify in Kent and London, putting everything and everyone Rose loves in danger. Only one thing is for sure: it will be a Christmas she never forgets . . .

Review

I read a Christmas book by Elaine Everest last year and really enjoyed it so I thought I would read another one this year as well. 

The story centres around Rose Neville who is the manageress of the Margate Lyon’s Teashop. However, Rose is trying to manage the teashop in the middle of the Second World War, with the constant threat of bombs landing and rationing making it ever harder to keep the teashop well stocked. But she also has her wonderful mom Flora to help her keep her spirits up and all her wonderful family as well as the love and support of her fiancé Ben. 

The story opens with rather a dramatic scene that left me desperately wanting to know more and I must admit that meant I could not put the book down until I had all the answers. As the story progresses we get to meet Rose’s future mother in law and the new family she will be joining. But at the same time Eileen, Rose’s half sister makes an appearance and things start to look a bit suspicious to Rose’s friends.  

My favourite character of the book is Mildred. Mildred stands no messing whatsoever and spends her time at sea on her fishing boat. She helps Rose, Lily and Katie and treats them as if they were her own daughters. She will fight for justice and will stand up to any man. I just couldn’t help but like her. My second favourite character was Anya who is also stubborn, determined and has a fiery temper. She also comes out with some fantastic lines. 

I really enjoyed this book and definitely plan on reading more books by Everest in the New Year. I give this book 4 out of 5 Dragons. 

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Purchase Links

Book Depository | Foyles | Waterstones | Wordery

(All purchases made using one of the above affiliate links gives a small percentage of money to myself with no extra cost to yourself. All proceeds go towards the upkeep of this blog. Thank you ever so much, your support is gratefully received.)

About the author

Elaine Everest was born and brought up in northwest Kent and has written widely – both short stories and features – for women’s magazines. When she isn’t writing, Everest runs The Write Place creative writing school in Dartford Kent, and the blog for Romantic Novelists’ Association. 

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Christmas at Woolworths by Elaine Everest (Review)

Christmas at Woolworths by Elaine Everest

Blurb

Even though there was a war on, the Woolworths girls brought Christmas cheer to their customers

Best friends Sarah, Maisie and Freda are brought together by their jobs at Woolworths. With their loved ones away on the front line, their bonds of friendship strengthen each day. Betty Billington is the manager at Woolworths, and a rock for the girls, having given up on love . . . Until a mysterious stranger turns up one day – could he reignite a spark in Betty?

As the year draws to a close, and Christmas approaches, the girls must rely on each other to navigate the dark days that lie ahead . . .

With so much change, can their friendship survive the war?

Review

I picked up this book before Christmas last year from a book stall at a Christmas fair but I never got around to reading so it was added to my Christmas list for this year and finally I have managed to read it.

I will be honest I struggled at the beginning of this book and I wasn’t entirely sure I would continue reading it but thankfully I carried on as I could see it was going to be a good story. The reason I struggled was due to Everest’s writing style, when there are a lot  of characters all talking Everest doesn’t make it very clear who is saying what and in several instances there aren’t even quotation marks to show there is a dialogue going on which really put me off. However, once I got used to it I soon got into the story.

My favourite character of the book is Ruby who is Sarah’s grandmother. Ruby looks after everyone and includes everyone as family even people she has just met. If she sees they need help she is there doing whatever needs to be done. She is also a big believer that any problem can be solved with tea and is regularly making a brew.

Freda is a wonderful character who I really felt for as she seems to get the worst luck in this book but bless her all she wants to do is do her part for the war effort and keep on going. Sarah who is married to a Spitfire pilot and has a baby daughter is also the same and happily goes the extra mile for anybody in need. 

I will be honest I would have loved a bit more about Betty because she was a fantastic character that I really wanted to see more of. Betty is a leader and a strong woman who is a true friend to Sarah, Maisie and Freda. 

This book is detailing the run up to Christmas through these friends’ lives and it is beautiful and really enjoyable. I absolutely loved the story and the excessive use of tea because as a massive tea drinker myself I believe that tea solves most problems. I give this book 4 out of 5 Dragons just because I struggled with Everest’s writing style but I do intend on reading the rest of the series.

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Purchase Links

Amazon

(All purchases made using one of the above affiliate links gives a small percentage of money to myself with no extra cost to yourself. All proceeds go towards the upkeep of this blog. Thank you ever so much, your support is gratefully received.)

About the author

Elaine Everest was born and brought up in northwest Kent and has written widely – both short stories and features – for women’s magazines. When she isn’t writing, Everest runs The Write Place creative writing school in Dartford Kent, and the blog for Romantic Novelists’ Association.