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Review | The Little Coffee Shop of Kabul

Title | The Little Coffee Shop of Kabul 

Author | Deborah Rodriguez 

Publisher | Little Brown, Sphere 

Publication Date | 11th April 2013 

Source | Review Copy 

Rating | 4/5 

In a little coffee shop in one of the most dangerous places on earth, five very different women come together.
SUNNY, the proud proprietor, who needs an ingenious plan - and fast - to keep her café and customers safe.
YAZMINA, a young pregnant woman stolen from her remote village and now abandoned on Kabul's violent streets.
CANDACE, a wealthy American who has finally left her husband for her Afghan lover, the enigmatic Wakil.
ISABEL, a determined journalist with a secret that might keep her from the biggest story of her life.
And HALAJAN, the sixty-year-old den mother, whose long-hidden love affair breaks all the rules.
As these five women discover there's more to one another than meets the eye, they form a unique bond that will for ever change their lives and the lives of many others.
The Little Coffee Shop of Kabul is the heart-warming and life-affirming fiction debut from the author of the bestselling memoir The Kabul Beauty School.

I have to admit, this is one book that I saw in the bookshops and kept meaning to read it but never got around to it. I heard good things about it and it seemed to be always on show when ever I was in a book shop. I was thrilled when Little Brown offered me the chance to read it along with the new book that follows on Return to the Little Coffee Shop of Kabul

It took me a while to get into the book but once I did I couldn't put it down. I think i'm one of those readers that struggles to get into a book for the first half and then zoom through the last half of the book utterly gripped! 

The characters were instantly likeable, and although a couple made me feel wary of them, it was utterly beautiful how it all played out in the end. I was also made so aware of just how awful life in Afghanistan can be, especially for women. I think it's only natural that in this day and age where we've had to accept terrorism as more normal than it should be, it really made me think just how I can sometimes misjudge people and fear them for no reason.

I love how brave Deborah was with the content of her story, she really brought the life in Kabul alive in the pages, shying away from nothing and revealing all. From the customs and traditions expected and obeyed to the disgusting treatment of women, this book also beautifully captures the friendship and bonds between multi-cultural women and men that centre around the Little Coffee Shop.

Whilst the book does encroach on aspects of romance and forbidden love, I particularly enjoyed how it didn't focus so much on romance, literally teased us with enough information for the romance to be captured beautifully. This book has opened my eyes and my heart to the possibilities and daily life in Kabul.

A wonderful and heartening read that will stay with me forever, I'm looking forward to reading the following book; Return to the Little Coffee Shop in Kabul, and also Deborah's other books. 

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