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Book Review: Summer at The Comfort Food Cafe, by Debbie Johnson.

Book Review: Summer at The Comfort Food Cafe, by Debbie Johnson.

Thank you to Netgalley and Harper Impulse for my copy of this book. I would also like to thank Irena from BookDustMagic  for recommending this book to me. Irena has been a lovely bookish friend to me over the past while and I hope we can keep swapping book recommendations and continue our bookish chat. Thanks Irena. 

book friend


The brand new book from best-selling author Debbie Johnson will make you laugh, make you cry, and make you raid the pantry in the middle of the night…

The Comfort Food Cafe is perched on a windswept clifftop at what feels like the edge of the world, serving up the most delicious cream teas; beautifully baked breads, and carefully crafted cupcakes. For tourists and locals alike, the ramshackle cafe overlooking the beach is a beacon of laughter, companionship, and security – a place like no other; a place that offers friendship as a daily special, and where a hearty welcome is always on the menu.

For widowed mum-of-two Laura Walker, the decision to uproot her teenaged children and make the trek from Manchester to Dorset for the summer isn’t one she takes lightly, and it’s certainly not winning her any awards from her kids, Nate and Lizzie. Even her own parents think she’s gone mad.

But following the death of her beloved husband David two years earlier, Laura knows that it’s time to move on. To find a way to live without him, instead of just surviving. To find her new place in the world, and to fill the gap that he’s left in all their lives.

Her new job at the cafe, and the hilarious people she meets there, give Laura the chance she needs to make new friends; to learn to be herself again, and – just possibly – to learn to love again as well.

For her, the Comfort Food Cafe doesn’t just serve food – it serves a second chance to live her life to the full…

Kindle Edition, 293 pages
Published April 29th 2016 by HarperImpulse
comfort food

My Thoughts:

It was the name of this book that attracted me straight away. I love books that are foodie focused. I haven’t read any books by this Author before, but I had an idea of what to expect by the name, cover and blurb. The cover is just lovely isn’t it?

The book begins with Laura and her two children still grieving after the death of their Husband / Dad. Laura applies for a summer job in Dorset at The Comfort Food Cafe, this means leaving their home in Manchester for the summer. 

The way the cafe was described totally lived up to my expectations, it sounds like a really beautiful place and a lovely place to work and enjoy the summer. With its bookshelves, board games, photos and pictures, one which says:

“We will assume you want your hot chocolate with marshmallows and cream, unless you appear to be dead”

Laura meets all kinds of fantastically weird and wonderful people during her stay, and although we meet quite a few sideline characters, they are all easily memorable and add a little extra to the story. 

The idea of The Comfort Food Cafe, is as it sounds to provide comfort food for all the customers. I was hoping that the comfort food would be a much larger part of the book, with loads of foodie descriptions, perhaps a few examples of cake recipes and Laura baking. This was my only disappointment with this book. I wanted more food!!! I don’t know if this is just me being a greedy chocoholic, and the rest of you would find food talk irrelevant? But this is my review, so there! ;-). One of Laura’s treats which sounds amazing is her chocolate bar milk shakes, I would definitely try one of those if I could go to the cafe.

There were many humorous moments in the book too, one in particular involving her underwear. If you read it, look out for that scene! And another where she mentions, ‘The Grand Old Duke of York’, which I will remember myself!! Even Jimbo the dog does things to make us chuckle.

“….he got off his lead at a campsite in Scotland and threw himself right into the swimming pool, splash in the middle of an aquarobics class”

One of the side characters that I liked was Becca, Laura’s sister, a care free single girl, with such a warmth and sisterly love. If there is another book about the developments at The Comfort Food Cafe, it would be nice to hear more from Becca.

This book was heart warming, funny and reminded me that there is always hope. Regardless of what happens in life, there is comfort food, friends, family and the beach!






While I was reading this book, I entered a Harper Impulse giveaway, and was lucky enough to win 4 more Debbie Johnson books. Have you read any of these? What did you think?

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

Posted by on May 28, 2016 in Books


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