Monday, July 30, 2012

TLC Book Tour Stop: The Color of Tea by Hannah Tunnicliffe

Title: The Color of Tea
Author:  Hannah Tunnicliffe
Format: ARC
Publisher: Scribner
Publish Date: June 5, 2012
Source: TLC Book Tours

Why You're Reading This Book:

  • You're a fiction fan.
  • You're an armchair traveler.
  • You're a foodie.
What's the Story?:

From "An exciting debut novel set in the exotic, bustling streets of coastal China—a woman whose life is restored when she opens a small cafÉ and gains the courage to trust what’s in her heart.Lost among the mayhem that defines Macau, Grace’s life is slowly unraveling. Her marriage to Pete is fraying and her dreams of having a family seem hopeless.     With the heralding of a new year she resolves to do something bold. Something her impetuous Mama might do. In this pocket of China, filled with casinos and yum cha restaurants, she opens her own small cafe called Lillian’s. This sanctuary of macarons and tea becomes a place where the women of Macau come together, bridging cultural divides, to share in each other’s triumphs and pain. But Grace’s immersion in the cafe takes its toll on her marriage, and when things start to crumble, her beloved Lillian’s suddenly feels like a burden rather than an escape. The recipe for disaster is complete when Pete does the unthinkable.     Infused with the heady aromas of Macau and peppered with delectable characters, The Color of Tea is a mouth-watering journey of the senses as Grace rediscovers what it is to love, to live with hope, and embrace real happiness."

My Two Cents:

Foodie fiction in China? Yes, please. I was very excited about this book. I love, love, love foodie fiction and I love armchair traveling so this book definitely fit the bill.

I loved the setting of the book. Macau seems like a sort of glamorous place. It has a lot going on and still seems to hold on to its European influence. It was a Portuguese settlement back in the day and is now a special administrative district of China, sort of like Hong Kong. I loved the exotic-ness of the setting. Tunnicliffe paints a great picture of the city and its people. It made me want to visit!!! I definitely thought that the book was at its best when the setting was being described. I loved hearing about how Lillian's (the restaurant in the book) was set up.

I also liked the food part. Lillian's is a sort of bakery come tea house that specializes in macarons, a delicious French treat that can be incredibly temperamental to make. The interesting in the  book is that Grace doesn't know how to make the macarons at first and so Leon, another character who owns another restaurant, helps her make the macarons and then they become the focus of Grace's shop. I kind of wonder why Grace doesn't choose to build a business around something that she already knew. It just seemed to be a big gamble that I didn't really understand the motive behind. I did like the story. It kept me reading, wanting to see what happens. I did wish that I understood a little bit more about the motives of all of the characters. Grace seems to want to set up a cafe very suddenly and I wish that I knew more about why. She seems to hint at the idea that it was something spontaneous that her mother would do but I'm wondering if that was not the only reason.

I did like the food part of the book. Macarons are totally intimidating to me. It's something that I've never attempted to bake. Thus, I loved living vicariously through Grace. Each chapter was named after one of the macarons served at Lillian's and some of them sound absolutely to die for! I did have one regret on this though. The book talks about all those delicious macarons yet there is not a recipe to be found in the book. Throw us a bone, please!!!

Bottom line: A delicious trip!

Don't Forget to Follow the Rest of the Tour:

Monday, July 9th:  Book Club Classics!
Tuesday, July 10th:  BookNAround
Wednesday, July 11th:  girlichef
Monday, July 16th:  Book Addiction
Wednesday, July 25th:  Stiletto Storytime
Thursday, July 19th:  Twisting the Lens
Monday, July 30th:  A Bookish Affair
Thursday, August 2nd:  Suko’s Notebeook
Friday, August 3rd:  Raging Bibliomania
Monday, August 6th:  Savvy Verse and Wit
Thursday, August 9th:  Southern Girl Reads
Tuesday, August 14th:  The Written World
TBD:  Regular Rumination


  1. I love foodie books! Hopefully I will get to read this one soon, it sounds great! Your right, recipes at the end would have been nice.

    1. This was an ARC so maybe in the final version, there are recipes? One can hope!

  2. Oooh -- exotic foodie fiction. I'm definitely in, too. Sounds like a really fun read, and I love macarons! My boyfriend and I made pistachio marcarons on one of our early dates, and I was pretty impressed they came out as well as they did -- especially since I'd never even tried one before then!

    1. Once we move to someplace where our kitchen isn't a glorified closet, I may need to try to make them!


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