Publisher: Macarons & Tea Publishing
Release Date: November 28, 2016
Received From: Amazon
Nao hides from his violent past in the Japanese mob by opening a teahouse in Japan’s cultural center, Kyoto. His past comes flooding back when he discovers a gravely injured man with a tattooed chest, a bloody knife, and a Korean business card.
Saehyun would’ve died if not for Nao’s help. He knows nothing of his savior’s connection with the local mafia, but Saehyun has his own secrets. He commands the Korean mafia, the mortal enemy of Nao’s former syndicate.
As Nao and Saehyun grow closer, so does the strength of the Korean mob. A shocking murder pulls Nao back into a past he’d all but abandoned. War is looming, and Nao must choose between protecting Saehyun or avenging the honor of his old mafia family.
GENDER: presumed cisgender
TROPES: turf wars, enemies to lovers, rival syndicates
TAGS: queer romance, organized crime, crime fiction
If there is one thing I love more than coke a cola–it’s tea. And you now what I love more than tea? Blood Stained Tea.
Amy Tasukada did not hesitate as she started the book off with violence and steamy action while introducing the main characters, Nao Murata and Saehyun Park. With elaborately placed tea metaphors and plot, Tasukada weaved an amazing tale about the Japanese and Korean yakuza and romance.
It was a slow build at first–trying to know the characters before everything spread like fire around the 15th or so chapter. But once everything had gone into motion, I couldn’t put this book down. I wanted to know every characters’ next move and I wanted to see how the relationship between Nao and Saehyun evolved. I was not disappointed until that one scene until the end where my heart was torn from my chest and doused in oolong tea–but I can’t tell you what happened because spoilers are no fun.
There were a few cringe-y parts where I had to put the book down, but with a book featuring violence, one has to expect that. There was also this one character that was too creepy even for my tastes but that didn’t stop me from reaching the ending and crying my heart out.
Now I really want tea.
Amy Tasukada lives in a catless home in North Texas. (She enjoys cats but can’t quite make that kind of commitment yet.) As an only child her day dreams kept her entertained, and at age ten she started to put them to paper. Since then her love of writing hasn’t cease. When she’s not chasing after stray cats, she can be found drinking hot tea and filming Japanese street fashion hauls on her Youtube channel.