Title: The Espressologist
Author: Kristina Springer
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Concepts: jobs, marketing, demand, consumers
Review: As a barista at a local Wired Joe’s coffee-shop franchise, Jane Turner made it a point to observe her customers and keep notes about their personalities and their favorite drinks. One day it occurred to her that the personality type who drank a medium iced vanilla latte (smart, sweet, gentle, sometimes soft-spoken) formed a perfect match with the personality for a medium dry cappuccino (smart, simple, a good friend). Why not act as matchmaker and introduce these customers to each other? The match made in coffee heaven turned out to become a happy and compatible couple, thus sparking Jane’s new role as the Wired Joe’s espressologist.
The franchise’s manager recognized a good idea when he saw it, and after just a little marketing, Jane’s reputation as a talented and unique matchmaker quickly grew. New customers poured into the store and coffee sales ballooned, particularly when the espressologist was in. However, the ultimate challenge of appearing on television wound up rattling Jane’s nerves. She would need to confront some of the insecurities and blind spots in her own life, particularly with her attitude about school and relationships, in order to get her mojo back.
Sit back and relax with your favorite mocha drink and enjoy this satisfying novel for young adults. Blended into the fun is a good dose of economics, particularly with the focus on sales and marketing. With the sweet love stories and the substantive lessons, the book makes for a nice, refreshing pick-me-up.
Review by: Rutgers University Project on Economics and Children