The Cosy Coffee Shop of Promises by Kellie Hailes
Published: 10th February 2017
Publisher: HQ Digital
Available on Kindle
BlurbMel’s dream of opening a coffee shop is finally a reality! A cosy little place turning out the best flat whites and most delicious pastries in Devon. In the picture-perfect town of Rabbit’s Leap no one can stand in her way – especially local pub owner, Tony. She doesn't care how gorgeous he is, she will not let him steal her customers with his fancy new coffee machine!
There is only room in their small town for one coffee shop…but when Hurricane Val – aka her mother – is due to blow into town, Mel is in desperate need of an instant boyfriend. She can’t face another hunt to 'find a man' and while Tony may be her business rival, Mel can’t help but notice he’d make the perfect fake fiancé…
If they can strike a deal all they need to do is stick to it, no falling in love, no real feelings and definitely no dreams of a happy-ever-after!
Mel has been living in the small Devon town of Rabbits Leap for just over a year and her coffee shop is providing her with a small but steady income, probably because it’s the only place in the village to buy a cup of coffee. So imagine her surprise when she goes to the local pub and sees that landlord Tony has installed a brand new state of the art coffee machine. Mel’s heart sinks as with competition her coffee shop may not survive. So she and Tony make a plan to help keep both of their businesses going. Mel will help Tony learn to cook so he can improve his pub meals and make more income that way and in return Tony must not serve coffee until after three in the afternoon when Mel’s coffee shop closes. Oh and he must pretend to be her fiancé when her mother Val comes to visit. Can these promises help save both their businesses and are their feelings between these two hidden among all the pretence?
This is a lovely light-hearted read which is a great debut for Kellie Hailes. I instantly loved the chemistry and playful banter between Mel and Tony right from the start and it’s fairly obvious how this story will end but I loved the entertaining journey on how they got there.
Mel seems a fairly quite girl who has something troubling her and although being in Rabbits Leap a year has kept herself to herself. I loved how when she helps Tony out in the pub she became more a part of the village community and began to blossom.
Tony himself has the reputation of being the local Lothario and only seems to be committed to preserving the pub exactly as it was when his mum died, despite it desperately needing updating. I loved the way that Mel gave him a new insight into life and showed him that changes aren’t always the worst thing that can happen.
Mel’s mum Val is quite a character, she seems determined to be with a man at all costs and thinks Mel should be too, hence the pretend relationship with Tony. Although coming across as over bearing and in your face I think she had her heart in the right place and just didn’t want Mel to be lonely.
I was expecting more of the story to take place in the coffee shop as the title suggests but it’s mostly carried out in the pub, which I actually enjoyed as loved seeing the transformation it went through. I guess the title relates to where the actual promise between Tony and Mel takes place.
This was a joy to read and I’m very much looking forward to see what Kellie Hailes writes next, perhaps a return to Rabbits Leap with Tony’s sister Jody?
Thank you so much to HQ Digital and Netgalley for the copy, which I have reviewed voluntarily.