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The Teashop Girls

The Teashop Girls

Illustrated by: Sujean Rim
For Ages: 8 - 14
The Official Rules of the Teashop Girls

1. Teashop girls are best friends forever.
2. Tea is held every week, no matter what.
3. All tea and scones must be split equally at all times.

Annie, Genna, and Zoe have been hanging out at the Steeping Leaf since elementary school. The Teashop Girls do everything together -- at least they used to. With the end of eighth grade approaching, Genna's too busy with theater, Zoe's always at tennis, and Annie feels totally left out. What happened to tea every week, no matter what?

When Annie convinces her grandmother to give her a job as a barista at the Leaf, things begin to look up. In between whipping up chai lattes for customers, and attempting to catch the attention of her Barista Boy crush, Annie is finally beginning to feel as grown-up as her best friends. But an eviction notice spells trouble for the Leaf and unless they can turn the business around, the teashop will have to close its doors forever.

Fresh, honest, and sweet, Laura Schaefer's debut novel is sure to resonate with readers everywhere.
Choose a format:
  • Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books | 
  • 272 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781416967941 | 
  • December 2009 | 
  • Grades 3 - 9 | 
  • Lexile 710L
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List Price $6.99
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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

“My dear if you could give me a cup of tea to clear my muddle of a head I should better understand your affairs.” —CHARLES DICKENS, MRS. LIRRIPER’S LEGACY

There’s a right way and a wrong way to do many things, and when it comes to tea, my opinion is one should not mess around. My grandmother Louisa first taught me to brew a fine pot of tea when I was five years old. She told me what a nice job I had done, and I announced I wanted to be just like her when I grew up. Louisa laughed merrily at the time. I hoped she wouldn’t laugh today. I couldn’t bear the thought of being... see more

About the Author

Laura Schaefer
Courtesy of Laura Schaefer

Laura Schaefer

Laura Schaefer has been writing almost as long as she's been making tea. She got her start as a contributor to the University of Wisconsin's student paper, the Daily Cardinal, and went on to write regularly for the Princeton Review and She lives in Madison, Wisconsin, where she can usually be found dancing the lindy hop. Her favorite type of tea is English Breakfast with lots of milk and sugar. Visit her online at


Author Revealed

Laura Schaefer
Q. how did you come to write The Teashop Girls?

A. I was vacationing in Florida in the summer of 2005. The small town outside of Orlando where my dad and brother live has a tea shop called Sherlock's. It was when I was sitting there, on its outdoor patio, that the title The Teashop Girls came to me. I'd been a freelance writer for many years by then and always enjoyed taking my laptop to work in coffee and tea shops and cafés. It seemed natural to write about such a lively--yet comforting and peaceful--setting. I remembered how voraciously I read books when I was 10, 11, 12 years old and how the books I loved at that age were warm escape from everyday cares. I wanted to create that kind of world for my readers, and when I looked around Sherlock's that day, I knew I had found my inspiration.

As the book grew, many things that I believe in found their way onto its pages. I've worked for a local business in Madison for many years and knew that supporting small shops was something that I felt passionately about and wanted to explore in my storytelling. It was so right to make The Steeping Leaf, the main setting of The Teashop Girls, a family-run business.

Also, I've always been a person who needs quiet time in life for reflection and relaxation. It was important for me to create a world in my fiction that honored this trait. So many young adult novels are focused on stressful social issues, glamour, or labels and brand names. I wanted my story to be warm, a little old-fashioned, and centered on things in life that matter most...friends, family, good food, and community. I'm proud to say that The Teashop Girls is about all of these things.

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