We’re back with another book and beverage pairing! Over the past few months, we’ve paired books with glasses of wine, pints of beer, and piping hot mugs of your favorite winter warmers. Now it’s time for the book-themed tea party of your dreams! If you’re new to our pairings, the process is really quite simple: choose your favorite tea(s) from the list below and find a customized book recommendation that’s sure to fit your taste buds and literary sensibilities. From caffeinated to chamomile, green tea to black tea, and even some brews from around the globe—we’ve matched a variety of popular teas with their literary lookalike. Are you ready to get sipping and reading? Well, put the kettle on and help yourself to a few biscuits. Tea is served, with a side of storytelling.
Everything Inside by Edwidge Danticat
Celebrated for its manifold health benefits, pair an immune-boosting cup of green tea with this collection of short stories, infused with eight emotionally absorbing narratives that celebrate what it means to be alive. Rich with hard-won wisdom and set in locales from Miami to Port-au-Prince and beyond, Everything Inside explores the forces that pull us together or drive us apart, sometimes in the same searing instant.
Winter by Ali Smith
Enjoy this rich, multilayered traditional Chinese tea alongside Ali Smith’s “stunning meditation on a complex, emotional moment in history” (Time). The second novel in her groundbreaking Seasonal Quartet, Winter casts a warm, wise, merry, and uncompromising eye over a post-truth era in a story rooted in history, memory, art, and love.
The Body Lies by Jo Baker
For afternoon tea, sip a cup of Earl Grey alongside this slow-burning suspense novel about a young English professor escaping the traumas of sexual assault. Set in the English countryside, with a riveting psychological suspense story that grapples with how to live as a woman in the world, this book and tea pairing are perfect for a bleary, foggy day.
Disappearing Earth by Julia Phillips
A piping hot cup of minty freshness is the perfect companion for Julia Phillips’s powerful novel that gives us a new understanding of the intricate bonds of family and community. With a refreshing cup of tea in hand, enter the wintery chill of Russia and this exciting, unconventional thriller told from multiple points of view.
The Ministry of Utmost Happiness by Arundhati Roy
Originating from the royal courts of what is now India, this sweet spiced tea complements this dazzling novel that takes us on an intimate journey of many years across the Indian subcontinent—from the cramped neighborhoods of Old Delhi and the roads of the new city to the mountains and valleys of Kashmir and beyond.
Red Lotus by Chris Bohjalian
For a caffeine and adrenaline jolt, read this twisting story of love and deceit with a cup of English breakfast tea. This international thriller about an American man who vanishes on a rural road in Vietnam, and his girlfriend, an emergency room doctor trained to ask questions, is about those who dedicate their lives to saving people and those who peddle death to the highest bidder.
Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel
Earthy, magical, and utterly charming, this tale of family life in turn-of-the-century Mexico blends poignant romance and bittersweet wit. Just like a cozy cup of chamomile, this classic love story is perfect for reading before bed and is sure to bring you fantastical dreams flavored with spicy food, flamboyant weddings, and sweeping declarations of love and loyalty.