5 Stars: Sally Cronin at Smorgasbord Book Reviews September 10th 2022
This is a delightful collection of prose and poetry reflecting on a life tinged with sadness but also a great deal of love and humour. The author celebrates moments from her early life and marriage of over thirty years with stories that will entertain and also bring the reader’s own experiences to mind.
Sometimes it is the simplest things that evoke the warmest memories, such as a silver cutlery set, a toy frog called Sam, a yellowed kitchen chopper and the first time baking a traditional family birthday cake.
We are invited to concerts as a teenager overcomes self-doubt to solo in front of an audience of 2000 and fulfil a dream inspired by her idol Barbra Streisand. There are moments with spiders that might have you looking around your immediate surroundings, but you will also find yourself in some wonderful wilderness areas offering moments of reflection and a dip in a mountain pool.
Love is a central theme beginning with her mother and father’s love story that endured for nearly 70 years having begun in WWII with all its uncertainty and lengthy periods apart, and the author’s own fateful meeting with her husband, involving a kitchen appliance!
The loss of parents, even after a long and wonderful life, leaves a hole in our hearts. Their stories and poetry dedicated to them in this collection are heart-warming and reinforce the extent of their loving influence on the generations that followed.
The final part of the collection reflects on the changes that come when children leave the nest, and whilst this is obviously a time of sadness, there is also pride and delight as new lives are forged with future adventures to look forward to.
I enjoyed all the stories and poems in the collection and I am hard pushed to pick just one favourite but this one touched my heart.
I stare at this page, milk white as the
blanketed ground in winter’s staging
where are the syllables?
I fear they have flown to faraway places,
across desert dunes and boundless oceans
and might not return so that I may tell him
(again) how irreplaceable he is.
Instead, I’ll touch his lips with mine
and steady myself in the arms of a man
who is satisfied with my simple existence.
I can highly recommend this collection to read in one sitting or to dip into when you are in need of gentle and uplifting moments.
5 Stars: Jane Sturgeon – More Than Coffee: So Much More Than a Memoir of Verse and Prose – June 17, 2022
I loved every word in this book. Scott’s style and loving expression took me into the heart of life and to what truly matters. Her thoughts of Wil, her father-in-law, are compassionate and delightful in equal measure. Scott’s love for her family and the life she and Matt have built for their children shine through. Belonging and Riding With The Wind are two of my favourite poems.
More Than Coffee is a delight from start to finish and I highly recommend it to anyone who needs a dip into the magic of life.
5 Stars: Scott Mitchell – Deep and Inspirational April 22, 2022
My favorite poet does it again in this publication. Lauren Scott is a deep end creative soul that finds the very words to pull in the reader. I’ve enjoyed her work for about 10 years.
5 Stars: Resa at Graffiti Lux Art & More (Resa’s review included her art work, so click on the link to see the full, amazing review: https://graffitiluxandmurals.com/2021/11/23/more-than-coffee-by-lauren-scott/)
As a person who enjoys poetry and coffee, the decision to read Lauren’s well written book was a no-brainer. As a matter of fact, I languished over every poem and bit of prose. For 33 mornings, I read one piece with my coffee. Each day’s reading brought me warm thoughts, stirred feelings and created a desire to be creative. What a great and positive way to start the day. In this intimate look at her and her family, nature plays a huge part in stirring memories of irreplaceable experiences, both uplifting and occasionally heartbreaking. All emotions are expressed beautifully in positive light. I couldn’t resist picking my favourite poem.
This poem is an experience I share with Lauren. She could have been writing about me and my mom. I am deeply moved.
There is no copy and paste from the ebook. I wrote this out, and proofed it many times. It seems the word program likes to correct non-mistakes. In the final proof, much to my amazement I saw the title was in blue. All the titles are in blue. Yet, I believed this title was in red. Lauren, I hope you are okay with me keeping the red!
She may have been speaking of her daughter, yet I see Lauren in those words. It’s as though I could have just used those words about her book, about herself.
5 Stars: Stephanie Eder – There’s something to take away from each page! September 24, 2021
More than Coffee: Memories in Verse and Prose is a heartwarming collection of poetry and short stories about love, loss, nature, parenting, and so much more, all with the best friend of coffee close by. My name is Stephanie, and I am Lauren’s daughter. While I have heard these stories told before, written or expressed verbally, and have helped with the editing process along the way, reading these stories and poems hit me in a different way. I was sitting on my couch in the apartment I share with my husband, reading my mom’s newest book, crying hysterically. Every page I turned, re-reading and even re-living through these moments provoked tears. I cried for my mom losing both her parents, but mostly on the short story ‘Ascent;’ I cried on the short story titled ‘1989,’ about my parents meeting even though I’ve heard it told many times before. Lastly, I cried while reading ‘The Way It Was,’ about my mom’s choir and solo singing opportunities encouraged by her teacher, that catapulted me, her daughter, in sharing that same passion for singing and love for Barbra Streisand. There is much more but those are a few examples that capture the raw emotions, authenticity and vulnerability she shares with the reader – aspects to life everyone can relate to. My mom has published two solely poetry books prior, but the amalgamation of the short stories and poems is a fine-tuned balance, one she has hit her mark on. I couldn’t be any prouder! Do her the honor of purchasing and reading this book with a mug of coffee or your preferred drink of choice; you surely won’t be disappointed!
In the midst of all the strive and ugliness and turmoil “out there” in our world, comes lilting lovely prose and poems reminding us that the simple things of life – a cup of coffee, a hug from a child, sweetheart romance, hugging a tree, walking through the forest – these symbolize the reality of most of our lives. Peace amidst the worry, love amidst the stress, and Mother Nature, always Mother Nature here to nurture us. Lauren Scott helps us return to our own selves as we read in her sweet memoir those incidents that cause her peace and laughter and love. Even with an aversion to spiders, Lauren finds a way to smile and helps us readers nod our heads and say yes, yes, this is the sweetness of life.
5 Stars: Robbie Cheadle – A bright ray of sunshine – November 12, 2021
This lovely book is a mix of a memoir about the author/poet’s life with some beautiful freestyle poems included after each prose section to enhance the emotion and moments shared. The memoirs are relatable and cover delightful memories of family brought back through inherited items and stories shared by family members as well as the author’s own life experiences including achievements, romance, parental love, and overcoming fears. The author’s personality and humour comes through strongly in her writing and poetry, as well as her joy and pleasure in the simple things in life.
My favourite poem in this collection and the one that summarised for me the spirit and essence of this book is Fulfilled.
Let me drink from the gaze in your eyes
Eyes that have me wildly mesmerized
Mesmerized under their vivid piercing spell
Spell which only you many cast over me
Me, with a heart madly in love
Love, a whirlwind of euphoric emotions so true
True in not only our hearts, but in our minds
Minds, fully aware of their endless thoughts
Thoughts so amorous of us entwined
Entwined in each other’s arms eternally,
Eternally, still to few seconds for our time together.
I recommend this book to people who enjoy basking in the bright rays of happiness in life.
5 Stars: D.W. Peach – Lovely, personal memories from the author – September 21, 2021
This highly recommended and quick read is a compilation of a number of Scott’s personal and precious memories conveyed in both short prose and freeform poetry. A lot of those memories come with the luxury of a hot cup of coffee, but not all. They capture bits of time from idolizing Barbara Streisand as a kid to camping in the Sierras, and lifelong encounters with spiders. Embedded within many of the stories are heartfelt relationships with parents, spouse, and children.
Some of my favorite stories were “Silver Heirlooms” about how simple hand-me-downs become filled with meaning, “Ascent” about grief and the solace of nature, “Laughing Spiders” about big hairy arachnids, and “1989” a romantic relationship initiated by, of all things, an old refrigerator.
I’ve read poetry books by Scott in the past, and the poems in this collection are some of my favorites. They follow along the same lines as the prose pieces and are in many cases reflections of the same topic. My favorite poems were: “The Right Time”, “Simple Existence”, “To My Babies” and…
Its canary boldness
rises up to the sun
alone, yet not lonely,
but wearing bravery
on each petal –
standing tall with spirit
in lean green attire
as if soaking up the day’s
5 Stars: Holly Moseley – Extremely Heartwarming – October 18, 2021
These stories will make your heart and soul “do a little dance.” They are reminders about the simple things in our lives that mesh together to make us, well us. Lauren Scott is able to capture these moments in her own life so everyone can relate. You feel like you are sitting around a campfire, drinking coffee and laughing with an old friend. I highly recommend!
5 Stars: Beth – Uplifting – October 4, 2021
More than Coffee is a heartwarming collection of memories and anecdotes in which the author reflects on her early life, her marriage, her love for family and friends, and her appreciation for the great outdoors. In poetry and prose she writes poignantly (and often humorously) of love, loss, sadness and joy, and I found myself relating to each section. The overall feeling I had after reading More than Coffee was one of optimism and upliftment. A wonderful book!
5 Stars: Balroop Singh – Heart-warming and delightful memoir – September 23, 2021
More than Coffee: Memories in Verse and Prose by Lauren Scott is a heart-warming memoir that captures lovely moments of childhood, of parents’ love, of attachments, of campfires and hiking with the love of her life. The blissful moments come alive as Scott revels in the good times, letting nostalgia transport her into time machine, to watch the reel unfold like “pictures on a camera roll.” She talks about the value of some priceless gifts that are handed down from one generation to another; she takes pride in the stories that such “gems” tell to evoke fond memories of parents. Only the happy times have been shared in this book.
Written in a simple and straight-forward style, Lauren’s poetry is realistic. ‘To My Babies’ tugged at my heart and I am sure all mothers can relate to this delightful poem. Fragrant memories of “Earthquake Cake” made me smile. ‘Simple Existence’ is thought-provoking and made me pause to comprehend the depth of words that dance across “desert dunes and boundless oceans.” ‘Forever Steady’ too gives you a reflective message to take a breather, look at magical wilderness of nature and see how “delightfully birds sing and trees welcome our company.”
I loved this book and finished it within an hour. If you value relationships and family bonding, this book is for you.