Daughters and mothers. . .enemies, or allies? Of course, it depends on the people, and Katherine Reay has touched the very heart of the acerbic relationship between a mother and daughter with her characterization exemplified by the connections between Janet and her daughter, Alyssa, and Janet and her mother.
Alyssa Harrison never wanted to return to Winsome, Illinois. However, circumstances and life conspired heavily against her. Now, she not only feels like a loser but must face her mother, too.
Reay pulls you into the story of a prodigal daughter, her parents and the community of Winsome from page one and never lets you go.
Of Literature and Lattes is written from multiple points of view. I enjoy this, on one hand, because you get to know the people and their thoughts better. However, on the other hand, it can sometimes be confusing. I think more so because, even though Of Literature and Lattes works as a standalone, it is a sequel, and I may have understood the people better had I read the first book, too.
Lest you think the book is only about parental relationships, it is not. It is about relationships of all kinds; the good and the not so good.
The novel is serious, thoughtful and at times bleak and desolate. The Biblical themes, though minimal, are weighty and on point. Through it all runs a thread of optimism and the promise of hope.
I received this book from NetGalley. However, I was under no obligation to write a review.
# Of Literature and Lattes #NetGalley
Return to the cozy and delightful town of Winsome, where two people discover the grace of letting go and the joy found in unexpected change.
After fleeing her hometown three years earlier, Alyssa Harrison never planned to return. Then the Silicon Valley start-up she worked for collapsed and turned her world upside down. She is broke, under FBI investigation, and without a place to go. Having exhausted every option, she comes home to Winsome, Illinois, to regroup and move on as quickly as possible. Yet, as friends and family welcome her back, Alyssa begins to see a place for herself in this small Midwestern community.
Jeremy Mitchell moved from Seattle to Winsome to be near his daughter and to open the coffee shop he’s been dreaming of for years. Problem is, the business is bleeding money—and he’s not quite sure why. When he meets Alyssa, he senses an immediate connection, but what he needs most is someone to help him save his floundering business. After asking for her help, he wonders if something might grow between them—but forces beyond their control soon complicate their already complex lives, and the future they both hoped for is not at all what they anticipated.
With the help of Winsome’s small-town charm and quirky residents, Alyssa and Jeremy discover the beauty and romance of second chances.