COFFEEHOUSE ANGEL by Suzanne Selfors
Reading level: Young Adult
Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: Walker Books for Young Readers (July 21, 2009)
When Katrina spots a homeless guy sleeping in the alley behind her grandmother's coffee shop, she decides to leave him a cup of coffee, a bag of chocolate-covered coffee beans, and some pastries to tide him over. Little does she know that this random act of kindness is about to turn her life upside down. Because this adorable vagrant, Malcolm, is really a guardian angel on a break between missions. And he won't leave until he can reward Katrina's selflessness by fulfilling her deepest desire. Now if only she could decide what that might be . . .
It is said that no good deed goes unpunished, but if you ask Katrina about the good deed she bestowed upon the homeless man behind her grandmother's coffeehouse, she may tell you otherwise.
Katrina is an ordinary high school teenager that does not seem to know what she wants out of life, unlike her two best friends Vincent and Elizabeth whom are the exact opposite. In fact, Katrina does not seem to follow thru with much of anything in her life except for working at her grandmother's coffee shop: An old world style coffeehouse that is barely making it due to the swanky new java shop residing next door.
One morning Katrina finds a homeless man sleeping behind the coffeehouse and decides to leave him some coffee and day-old pastries, hoping that he would soon leave. But fate had different plans for Katrina. It turns out that the homeless man was an angel named Malcolm who was in her area to deliver a message to some one. He decides to pay a visit to Katrina (wearing a kilt) and tells her that her good deed has earned her a wish. She just had to tell him what she desired most and the wish would be granted and he would be on his way. Katrina does not believe him but decides to indulge him because thinks he is cute albeit a bit crazy. But crazy does not begin to cut it when her wish is tied to a coffee bean.
Needless to say the "wish" is not consumed and after another failed attempt follows the same path Katrina realizes that those actions have dire consequences that effect her on all levels. A close relationship changes, the coffeehouse suffers and Katrina is faced with a decision that will affect the rest of her life. To top it all off Malcolm will not leave until she truly tells him what she desires most otherwise it could prove costly for him, but how can she tell him that what she desires most is him?
Coffeehouse Angel was a nice lite read that tips the scales on the sweet side with fairy tale overtones. I liked the small nordic town and it's residents for creating a quaint backdrop in the story of a girl that finds her niche in life and a little romance too. Katrina's character development is well presented and it is nice to see her change from a clueless, needy person to a self thinking, go getter.
Although Malcom's role in the story was vital I did not find the romance between him and Katrina believable. It did not feel genuine and at times I wondered if she was soley interested in him because he was a handsome angel. I also have an issue with unresolved matters magically working all out in the last few pages.
So, if your looking for a lite read that has a mix of magic, personal growth and fairy tale endings then Coffeehouse Angel is the book for you.