Review

Review of Afternoon Tea At The Sunflower Cafe by Milly Johnson

Published: 18th June 2015
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Pages: 512

Blurb:

Connie Diamond has always been her husband Jimmy’s best girl or so she thought. But then she discovers that he s been playing away for the past twenty-four years, and that the chocolates she believed he bought her as a sign of his love were just a cover-up, and she is determined to get revenge. Along with Della Frostick, Jimmy’s right-hand woman at his cleaning firm, Diamond Shine, Connie decides to destroy Jimmy’s life from the inside. Together they will set up a rival business called Lady Muck, and along with the cleaning ladies who meet at the Sunflower Café, they’ll make him wish he had never so much as looked at another woman. Then Connie meets the charming Brandon Locke, a master chocolatier, whose kind chocolate-brown eyes start to melt her soul. Can the ladies of the Sunflower Café help Connie scrub away the hurt? And can Brandon cure her affliction and make her smile again…?

Review:

Thank you to Simon & Schuster for kindly sending me a #TeamMilly review copy.

Connie, Della and Cheryl have had enough of men. From being cheated on to being lied to and stolen from, the final straw that broke the camel’s back has finally snapped. Within ten chapters, it’s all kicked off and I loved it. It was feisty and full of girl power which was brilliant. When Connie and Della team up to work against Connie’s *insert swear word here* husband, that was only the beginning and I couldn’t stop laughing due to how much fun it was going to be to read about a man finally getting what he deserved. Never, ever mess with an angry woman.

“Even Jimmy had said before that Cadbury’s would be out of business if it wasn’t for his wife.”

I really liked how the chapters changed in point of view between Connie, Della and Cheryl. We were allowed to get to know them individually, to learn about their likes and dislikes as well as their own lives. I did expect the Sunflower Cafe to be based at the forefront of the plot, but it wasn’t – the cleaning business and the revenge was. When Brandon Locke, a chocolate maker popped onto the scene – the sparkle in Connie’s eyes returns and despite her vow not to eat any more chocolate, I did have high hopes that Brandon would somehow manage to turn that around.

“Never again would chocolate pass her lips.”

When Milly introduces the Sunflower Cafe, the description is absolutely idyllic and I fell head over heels in love with the quaint little paradise spot. The women of Diamond Shine meet up every now and then at the independent cafe to have a gossip about their employers, talk about cleaning products and eat the heavenly afternoon teas. There were a wide range of mixed characters from Meg the Human Hoover to Hilda the Queen Bee to Astrid the Self Defender – they were all brilliantly placed and I found them to be exceptionally hilarious.

“Then the temperature plunged to Siberian-type numbers in the early hours of Monday morning…”

The plot may be focused on the revenge but there was a lot more to it than that, such as heartbreak, broken families, betrayal, rotten eggs (yup!), death, new friends as well as old, love, romance and fresh beginnings. The narrative flowed perfectly and it swept me off into the life of the three main women who were just an utter joy to read about. They felt real, relatable and that’s exactly what I expect from a Milly Johnson novel. It really was amusing in quite a lot of places but I’m not surprised – Milly writes comedy brilliantly!

“…Jimmy not Ivanka had any idea they were soon to be savaged by a Pitbull.”

It truly was a roller coaster of a narrative – there were many high points which I embraced but several low moments that allowed readers to connect deeper to the characters. The plot ended with so much drama which was the icing on the cake that allowed Connie, Della and Cheryl to receive the ending that they rightly deserved. It was such a warm, comforting narrative that I could happily read time and time again. The only aspect I would change is the title – we didn’t see as much of the Sunflower Cafe as I had hoped.

“People with Tourette’s haven’t used half as many ‘f’ words as I have this past week.”

Twitter: @millyjohnson

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