In “The Vintage Teacup Club,” a debut novel by Vanessa Greene, we are swept away to England for a touching story of friendship and how a vintage teacup can bring three women together for a lifetime. The story begins with Jenny, a bride-to-be in search of teacups to complete her vision for a vintage tea party wedding reception.
She finds the perfect set, but two other women — Alison and Maggie — also have eyes on it.
They argue, but ultimately decide to share the set.
Jenny will use it first for her wedding reception, then Maggie will use it for her demanding bridal client’s Alice in Wonderland-wedding reception, and finally, Alison will use it to fill with her popular candle wax and sell like her other popular vintage tea set candles.
As the novel unfolds, so do the individual women’s stories.
Someone from Jenny’s past appears out of the blue and brings with them many painful memories. She isn’t sure she can move forward in her life and forgive all the damage that has been done.
Alison is married with two teenagers who are constantly challenging her parenting. Her husband, Pete, has been laid off work and Alison realizes their bank account isn’t a full as she thought and she wonders how her family will move forward.
Maggie has built up her flower business and this next wedding could be just the ticket she needs to make it “big time” and open her second shop in London. Then, someone from Maggie’s past also appears and makes her question her future. Plus, the Alice in Wonderland-themed wedding she is planning with a rude landscaper may put her business dreams out of the picture.
These women of different ages and backgrounds have been joined together by this tea set.
They find that they are dependent on each other and each guides the others through crisis and become a lifeline of support.
The book is set in a small village in England and the writing uses British words that American readers aren’t familiar with.
Words like “flat” in place of house and “Mum” in place of Mom and customs, such as stopping for a bit of tea immerse the reader in the story.
Chapters are told from the perspective of the different women. Many, though are narrated by Jenny.
I find this format seems to make the story move along quickly.
I found “The Vintage Teacup Club” to be engaging, believable, and heartwarming.
Even though each of the women were at different stages in their life, they were all able to support, encourage and offer just the right It reminds readers of their own circle of friends and the support they have provided no matter what stage of life you met them in.
I am sure Maggie, Jenny, and Alison will be friends for a lifetime.
For all those teenage girls who read “Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants” by Ann Brashares in 2003, 10 years later this is a more grown-up version of unexpected friendships.