CommuniTea Highlight: Laura Taylor Namey

From prose to pastelitos, no one's dishing up Cuban cuteness with heartful YA literary flair like our teaheart Laura!

Author photo of Laura Taylor Namey

Meet Laura Taylor Namey, a San Diego based teacher-turned-novelist, and an overall delightful human being.

 I first met Laura on Twitter way back in the Fall of 2020. A Cuban Girl's Guide to Tea and Tomorrow was nearing its November pub day, and a casual tweet about book & tea pairings turned into a DM conversation about Latinx lit and diaspora culinary culture, which in turn evolved into a scheme to collaborate on a custom Cuban Girl tea to accompany the book launch. It was a very exciting few days, as we're both Latinas (she Cuban-American, myself Chicana) with shared ties to California and mutual passion for the myriad gustatory-linguistic charms of our people: LatAm foodie book dweebs.

While I'd already pre-ordered myself a copy of Cuban Girl (I always keep my finger on the pulse of the Latin lit scene), Laura was kind enough to zip me a digital ARC and I got to work immersing myself in the delicious world of her protagonists and their beautiful, heartful families. We played with samples over the next few weeks, and ended up madly in love with our collaborative creation, Sweaters & Stars.

What an absolute privilege to spend time creating with Laura. I feel uniquely treated to the inner circle of cheerleaders, having shaken my pom-poms as Laura's book not only debuted at THIRD on the NYT YA Bestseller list (an absolute coup for a second novel), but was also picked up at debut by Reese's Book Club. The accolades kept coming, and Laura accepted the attention with giddy grace, modeling the celebration of her hard work and big heart with all the joy and gratitude we could wish on a dear friend.

Imagine my delight when she thought of me again for the sequel to Cuban Girl and invited me to collaborate on a tea to launch with A British Girl's Guide to Hurricanes and Heartbreak! Once again, I was treated to an early look inside the charming, hopeful and complicated world Laura's created with this series, and together we crafted Proof of Life (which quickly became a personal iced tea fave)!

When I tell you how much I brag about Laura's success, and how, having gotten to know her during this project, her shine brings shine to everyone in her orbit, I'm not joking. She has no idea how highly we speak of her around here, both as a verbal photographer of beautiful and complex relationships (both with others and with one's self), as well as her cheeky charm and warmth. Heck, she has no idea I'm writing this about her right now, nor that I've been scrapping together this ode to our communitea dear for months now in my spare moments.

And you know what? Now YOU all know, too. If this absolute treasure of an author sounds like someone you want to know, follow Laura online on Twitter, TikTok, Insta, and of course on her home website for all cuteness Cuban-Amerian Rom Com. I highly recommend as well that you request her books at your local library if they're not already carried!

Two tea photos side-by-side

Sweaters & Stars and Proof of Life

Thanks for joining me for another CommuniTea Highlight, in which I wax BFF enthusiastically on incredible lovelies with whom we've had the delight and honor to collaborate! As y'all know, tea is nothing without like-hearted friends to share it, and I'm so proud and glad that you're here to share tea with me!


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