A remarkable little gem. If you are searching for something thought-provoking for your next airplane ride or lazy afternoon, I recommend "A Cup of Tea." The ending sneaked up on me. Exquisitely structured!
What a surprising delight this short novel was. It tells a story in a very minimalist style. You get to know the characters, as the story builds, through their actions and thoughts rather than detailed descriptions of traits and physical qualities. A self-involved woman decides to do a kind deed, but for narcissistic reasons, and this decision sets off a slow chain of events that impacts the lives of many. At its core, this is a short and powerful story of the impact of selfish decisions. You will find it hard to put down, as you'll sense the impending train wreck, and it's easily finished in one sitting. Highly recommended.
Set in 1917, when the world is profoundly changing, this book tells the story of two women from totally different circumstances and the man they both love. It has a bit of an "Upstairs, Downstairs" feel. It is inspired by the famous Katherine Mansfield short story, by the same name. Darkly romantic and compelling.
Set in 1917 NYC, Rosemary, a very prominent society girl, decides to help a young woman, Eleanore Smith, by getting her off the street corner and out of the rain, to bring her home for a cup of tea and some dry clothes. While there, Rose's fianc Philip comes by, and an unmistakable look of want passes between he and Eleanore. Rose quickly gets the girl out of the house and thinks nothing more of the incident.
But Philip hasn't forgotten about the beautiful young woman, and what takes place in the following pages forever changes the lives of everyone one involved. I finished this book in a day, just picking it up in between chores and other things. It was very hard to put back down. The chapters are very small, only a few pages, and you'll become engrossed in this book from the first one. I highly recommend this book as a great afternoon read. You won't be disappointed.
bellorri reviewed A Cup of Tea: A Novel of 1917 on
Helpful Score: 1
I read this book in one afternoon and it was marvelous. The characters are true to the period. I love this time frame and the character of Eleanor is very well fleshed out and realistic. As were the characters of Rose,Jane and Phillip. It is a very interesting snapshot of how things were then and the giant leaps in social mores we have made yet how things remain the same.
This book is truly worth reading, but it keep in mind it is short about 200 pages and it was written by Amy Ephron.
Amy is a screen writer. She wrote for the Electric company and was the producer for The Secret Garden. She comes from a Hollywood background so her book reads more like a movie in some ways.
For instance in a movie there is foreshadowing. The beginning relates to the end. Not all writers do this. This doesnt make the writing bad, just different. I could see another author using the same story and it would be written very different. No big twists or turns in this book. But not every book needs that either.
I do like that there are some themes about Duty and honor, and crumbling rolls of women around the time of world war one.
This book takes place in New York city in the turbulent year of 1917. This darkly romantic novel engages us with impeccable plotting and a deep sense of foreboding, propelling us toward its shocking conclusion.
A slim volume but loaded with interest! I simply couldn't put it down. It has depth,true love and tragedy, immorality and deceit, and an ending that will shock you. I should have seen it coming, but I didn't. I can't quite categorize this novel, it has something of everything. But I guarantee you will read it in one or two sittings, non-stop.
From Amazon.com: A Cup of Tea adds a touch of class--and a love triangle--to the classic theme of parallel lives and their accidental crossing. New York City, in the uncertain days of World War I, is home to Rosemary Fells, who is the sort of woman with the time to strike stunning poses and rearrange her curls; Eleanor Smith, whom Rosemary finds under a street lamp, miserable and shivering, is certainly not. Miss Fells indulges a whim of beneficence, whisking "the creature" home to share warmth, tea, and a change of clothing. Once clean and dry--fortified with sandwiches and brandy--young Eleanor and Rosemary's fiancé meet in the hallway and exchange a look, the kind of look that will forever change the course of their lives.
A Cup of Tea is a well-crafted, terse novel that reads like a good short story. It's a refreshing step back to yesterday, a time when the fates picnicked on the glass slopes of privilege.
New York City - 1917. On the verge of entering the war. A young socialite is engaged to be married. She sees a young woman standing outside on the corner in the rain and offers to take her home for a cup of hot tea and some warm, dry clothes. Their lives are altered by a chance encounter. Touching, moving story.
While the story line kept me reading, I wasn't all that pleased with the book. Mainly because the set of morals that was lacking in this book made me uneasy. It was hard to imagine some of these things. But, as I said, it was interesting story, just not one that I hope to ever hear from a reality perspective.