Legends & Lattes by Travis Baldree

“Legends & Lattes,” by Travis Baldree. Copyright 2022, Cryptid Press (305 pages, $12.00).

Legends & Lattes by Travis Baldree

Picture this: You’re sitting at home, reading your fantasy novel, and it ends. Do you ever ask yourself, “What about after? What happens next for those beloved characters that are always in high-stakes scenarios?”

In his debut novel Legends and Lattes, Travis Baldree answers this very question. Enter Viv, a mercenary who is wanting to do one final job, get that big pay out, and then retire to a quiet place and open up her own coffee shop. Once she’s retired (she literally hangs up her sword), Viv moves on and settles in the town of Thune, where she converts an old livery into the town’s first coffee shop, and tries her best to just immerse herself in the simple life, a tall order for the tall orc. Viv befriends other “outcasts,” like Calamity, the hard working and genius hobs; Tandri, the misunderstood succubi; Thimble, the pastry chef extraordinaire rattkin; and Pendry, the farmhand who just wants to become the bard he was born to be. With every one of Viv’s new friendships, her shop begins to flourish – from kitchen expansions, to new pastries, and even an open mic night! Don’t think that this novel of high fantasy and low stakes doesn’t have its trials though. Viv has to figure out how to run a new business for a market that didn’t know they needed a coffee shop (and were apprehensive at first), all while working around a corrupt government system in her town that wants to collect extra taxes from the top of her funds.

This cozy-fantasy book has opened a new genre to me that is only continuing to grow. Who wouldn’t love a “normal” kind of life but where magic and creatures roam? If you love this idea too, then put Legends & Lattes on hold with your library card!

Kayleigh Dyer is a library technical processing assistant at May Memorial Library. Contact her at kdyer@alamancelibraries.org.