ARC Review: Café Con Lychee

Café Con Lychee by Emery Lee
Publication Date: 10 May 2022

I had decidedly mixed feelings about this one. Our main characters, Theo and Gabi, are sons of rival café owners who put their differences aside to save their family businesses from the shiny new World Fusion Café that has moved into town. I absolutely adored Gabi and just wanted to wrap him in a big hug. He’s awkward and sweet and struggling with the idea of coming out because his parents would not be supportive. Theo, however, is pretty much a jerk. And although we get some insight into the root causes of some of his behavior, I feel like the meanness he projects onto pretty much everyone is out of proportion.

I had hoped that this book would have more of a focus on the evolution of the relationship of the two boys from enemies to friends to more. And while we do have that, the book spends a large amount of time focusing on their scheme to sell goodies to their classmates at school to raise extra cash for their parents. Maybe it’s my age or my teaching background showing, but I found that entire plotline to be rather far-fetched. I can’t imagine a school that would allow kids to just wander the halls pulling other students out of class for no other reason than “Homecoming business.”

But overall I did enjoy this story and the way it portrayed the growth of both of our main characters over the course of the book.

Thank you to NetGalley and Harper Collins for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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