The Teashop Girls by Laura Schaefer (Simon & Schuster, 2009)

February 24, 2010 at 6:56 pm Leave a comment

Ever since elementary school, Annie, Zoe and Genna have spent many afternoons in Louisa’s, (Annie’s Grandmother’s) teashop, The Steeping Leaf.  As 8th grade comes to a close, they are beginning to drift apart; boy obsessed Genna is going to acting camp, Zoe has become more involved with the tennis team, and Annie takes on a part-time job as a barista at the teashop only to find out that it is on the brink of closing due to a lack of business.  Toss in Annie’s crush, who has a crush on her older sister, and the popular Seattle coffee shop chain in town absorbing more of “The Leaf’s” business, all creating an interesting brew.  What keeps the friendship bound is not a pair of jeans that fits each friend, but a teashop girl handbook with official rules, such as, “No Teashop Girl can say anything mean about another Teashop Girl,” and their celebrated reputation that a group of younger girls would like to take on as the next generation of Teashop Girls.” But can they save the tea shop before it goes bankrupt? Sprinkled throughout the narrative, are interesting facts and stories about tea, recipes for scones, cakes, tea smoothies, flavored iced teas, and old print tea ads.  At the end of the book there are even tea party themes, games and discussion questions about the book.  The plot is light, but fun and addresses the issues girls of this age encounter with a different twist.  The relationship between Annie and her Grandmother is endearing and realistic.  This could be the beginning of a new series steeping. For 5th to 8th Grade.

J Fiction, Recommended—Anne Beier (HenHud)

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Wild Card by Tiki and Ronde Barber and with Paul Mantell (Simon & Schuster, 2009 Dear Pen Pal (Mother Daughter Book Club Series, Simon and Schuster, 2009)

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