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The Various Flavours Of Coffee Paperback – 30 Oct 2008


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Product details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Sphere (30 Oct. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0751539430
  • ISBN-13: 978-0751539431
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 3 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 146,923 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

An erotic, exotic story set at the turn of the 20th century, which builds upon Mr Capella's reputation as a writer of gourmet fiction . . . [an] imaginative storyline and boldly descriptive prose (Economist)

The surprising plot twists and authentic love story will make this a crowd-pleaser (Publishers Weekly)

A fast-paced narrative propelled by Capella's masterful characterizations of his principals, Wallis and Emily (Kirkus Review)

A fruity, full-bodied story (Good Housekeeping)

Book Description

The brilliant new novel from Anthony Capella, author of the bestselling The Food of Love and The Wedding Officer.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By J. Pease on 20 May 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This was the first Anthony Capella book I read and I knew nothing about the book or the author before reading it. I read it over one weekend and everything else was neglected. No housework got done, no university work got done, the children were left, more or less, to their own devices and dinner came out of the freezer!
The main character, Robert Wallis is, at the beginning a foppish dandy, seemingly without any redeeming features. He is offered a job he does not particularly want but ends up falling in love with the coffee merchant's beautiful, enigmatic daughter. He is sent far overseas to catalogue coffee and whilst abroad, becomes obsessed with a slave woman, Fikre. Angst, heartbreak and danger follow.
There are many strands to this story; womens' suffrage, slavery and emancipation, colonialism, 19th Century morals and double-standards and lesbianism. Above all though, it is a love story written with Capella's unparalleled verve and sensual descriptions.Flavours, tastes and sensations come alive. He truly paints pictures with words.
I would have liked to award this book 4 1/2 stars, only because I thought the epilogue was slightly disappointing;the book would have been better without it. As it stands I have given it four stars which is to take nothing away from a truly excellent book.If I could only keep one book...this could well be it...
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Stellastar VINE VOICE on 19 Nov. 2008
Format: Paperback
I very much enjoyed Capella's first two novels, The Food of Love and The Wedding Officer, but this was in a different league again.

Opening in the late Victorian period, the story is set in the coffee trade and travels from London to Africa and back again, with the suffragette movement playing an increasingly important role in the latter part of the book. The descriptions of London around the turn of the century are facinating, particularly if like me you live in the city.

The narrator manages to be quite endearing despite his many faults and the book is rarely less than engrossing. I didn't spot the ending coming, though perhaps with hindsight the signs were there - it was not the obvious one anyway.

I really wouldn't want to spoil the book for anyone by giving away the key plot lines. Just find a free afternoon, turn off your phone and relax and enjoy, you are in for a treat.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Miss B S Cimpeanu on 30 Nov. 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
this was a great book! i love thrillers generally, but this book is very informative about an era that i, otherwise, woulnd't have known about. the romance is complicated, just my kind of drama, and the business world of coffee is extraordinary. some of the basic question that i was afraid to ask have all been answered by Capella: where coffe comes from, how is it procesed, how flavours are selected?! the process is much complicated now, but to see the beging of something as big as coffee is amazing. the characters are all very well defined. adding human flaws like Capella did with the characters of this book just makes everything real. would recommend the book!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Nikki H on 9 Oct. 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book for my mum and had no interest in it whatsoever. Whilst on holiday she convinved me to read it. I couldn't put it down. The story is compelling. A great read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A. J. Facey on 13 May 2011
Format: Paperback
I bought this book by mistake for my Kindle, and I am glad I did! As with its subject matter of coffee, this novel melds together a whole variety of different aromas and tastes: African adventure, commerce, suffragism, politics, love story (or love stories), betrayal, cynicism and finally honesty. Coffee is a main theme, and Capella has clearly done his reading there; but there's so much more to savour here. Buy some fresh Ethiopian coffee beans from an un-Pinker-like specialty coffee house [try hasbean.com if in the UK], grind them, prepare some delicious coffee [buy yourself an Aeropress Coffee Maker if necessary for the purpose!] and sit back and enjoy this book!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Lincs Reader TOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 27 Oct. 2012
Format: Paperback
Well, what a romp of a read! And so very different to The Food Of Love or The Wedding Officer. If you fell in love with Bruno from The Food Of Love and expect another lucious hero then think again. Our hero in 'Coffee' is Rober Wallis - and although he comes through by the end, it takes a long time to warm to his character. This one moves away from Capella's usual romantic comedy and although it is still playful and sensual there is less farce.

The story follows twenty years of Robert's life. From his days as a bit of a waster, hanging around brothels and clubs in London with his rich play-boy friends, through his discovery of the Pinker sisters, his five years overseas and back home to London.

There are some wonderful quotes in this book, some that made me gasp and some that had me giggling. Amongst my favourites; Robert has just landed at Alexandria and quickly found his way to the local bar/whorehouse, where he takes the opportunity to sample the girls on offer. When relaying this episode to a friend at home in a letter, he writes: ".... my first dark-skinned girl. Completely shaven, incidentally. She was pleasantly flexible, I thought, in comparison to London girls, though a little dry."

So that is the sort of guy Robert starts out like. Through the years he mellows, he has many experiences. He lives amongst a native tribe and falls in love with a native girl - head over heels in love - the consequences of this love affair, change Robert completely and this is when he becomes more human and the reader starts to really care about him. The story also centres around the sufragette movement, and of course the coffee industry in the early 20th Century.

Anthony Capella is a talented author who has shown with this novel that he can turn his hand to more than the romantic comedy he is known for.
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