Review written for MM Good Book Reviews
Ah, look now, another one of Ms. Llewellyn’s books that I liked. I’m so confused by this author since she has no specific genre in her writing. She seems to go on all directions, but this time I finally detected a style that is a constant in her books. She has this uncanny ability to merge day-to-day life with magic. It seems so effortless for her and this novella does not disappoint.
Flip is a young man having quite a bad luck landing a job. He’s been in so many interviews and always ending empty handed. That is until he finds a strange ad for a job that oddly enough has not yet been snatched away. Mr. Chen, a tea shop owner, wants to see Flip the next day and have him work the day as trial leaving only the vaguest of descriptions about the job and no name for the shop either beside it’s address. An address that when Googled showed… nothing.
The next day is the beginning of a series of strange things waiting to happen. Flip finds himself in extraordinary situations that should only exist in Paranormal/Fantasy novels, and his new boss keeps the mystery going by constantly avoiding and defecting questions. But amidst the chaos around him there is a miracle waiting for Flip and his name is Balthazar Starblitz.
His sister, juggling two part time jobs and her college studies, worries for her brother and his “luck”. When she finds out that her brother’s claiming have no base in reality she panics and tries to help Flip by calling a doctor to check him out. Meantime, the chaos in Flip’s job and life continues to grow and things seem to take the down path.
Just when everything seem to collapse though, Flip finds his purpose and is determined to go through and help the man he has fallen for.
Now you should keep in mind that our protagonist, Flip, has this incredible experience of flowing through past-future-present and between werewolves/immortals and other paranormal creatures in a wonderful blend that strangely enough does not cause vertigo or an overabundance. As I said, the uncanny ability of this author to make all that happen is remarkable. But what had my vote in first place was the fact that there was TEA and I’m a lover of tea. I couldn’t get enough of this read and the magical place tea had in this story. For me was dreamy and quite superb, the plot was interesting and in its way funny. The way Flip took things in stride had me smiling and I quite liked the character. As for Balthazar himself, well we didn’t have much of a chance to really get to know him, but I didn’t find that a bad thing. Kept the mystery going and in the end I loved him.
But my eternal dissatisfaction with A.J’s novels is perhaps the intimate scenes approach. While they are sweet and lovely, they are never intense. They just don’t reach that spark that will make them memorable. There is some sort of meekness about them, and while it goes with the dream-like touch the story had, I’d rather have them mind-blowing, which of course is never the case.
Never mind, that is perhaps of lesser importance when the story was quite well worth reading, and I’m happy to recommend it to lovers of the genre.