Reading Legends and Lattes has gotten me thoroughly obsessed with the cozy fantasy genre, and lucky for me — and you — there are some really great books like Legends and Lattes out there to enjoy. Exactly what makes a cozy fantasy novel cozy can shift a bit from book to book, but there are some similarities across the board. They’re generally full of heartwarming characters, little to no drama, and relatively low stakes. And the addition of bookstores, coffee shops, tea shops, or bakeries doesn’t hurt. That might just be a personal preference, though.
When it comes to books like Legends and Lattes, in particular, I’m looking for books about characters finally looking to settle down, stories set in magical shops, casts of found families, friendship, and maybe a touch of romance. But most of all, I’m looking for books that invite you in and envelope you a nice, warm hug. Because that is what cozy fantasy is, really: the bookish form of pure comfort. And that’s what Legends and Lattes does so well. So brew up a pot of tea or coffee, drag out your fluffiest blanket, and settle in for the coziest of cozy books, just like Legends and Lattes.
Can’t Spell Treason Without Tea by Rebecca Thorne
If you enjoyed seeing girlfriends running a shop together in Legends and Lattes, you’re going to love this book that takes that premise and runs with it. After a close call finally convinces Reyna to quit her job guarding an indifferent queen, she and her mage girlfriend, Kianthe, run away to live out their dream: opening up a shop where Reyna can sell tea and Kianthe can read to her heart’s content. But with a vengeful queen on the lookout for her runaway guard and the most powerful mage in all the land, this little shop at the edge of dragon territory might be just as filled with mishaps as cozy chats by the fire.
Under the Whispering Door by TJ Klune
This cozy fantasy also features a café where all are welcome — including the dead. After dying of a heart attack, Wallace discovers he didn’t make a lot of friends in life. And now a newbie reaper has come to collect him. He’s taken to Charon’s Crossing, an unusual tea shop where the kindhearted owner, Hugo, helps souls cross over. But Wallace isn’t so sure he wants to move on just yet. The life he’s leaving behind isn’t what he hoped for, but it might not be too late to create a future worth dying for.
Coffee, Milk & Spider Silk by Coyote JM Edwards
An 11-foot-tall, battle-worn drider (that would be a sort of humanoid spider) might not be the likeliest candidate to open a coffee shop, but after retiring from the Ember Guard, Gwen’s ready for a change. Her skills on the battlefield, however, aren’t exactly translating into making espresso. And it’s only with the help of some unlikely friends, both new and old, that Gwen might be able to keep this new venture going. The premise is quite similar to Legends and Lattes (though this story predates it), with a heartwarming cast of characters but no romance.
Mooncakes by Suzanne Walker
This sweet graphic novel is just as cozy as it comes and full of characters and settings that fans of Legends and Lattes will love. A hard-of-hearing teen witch helping her grandmothers run their magical bookshop is reunited with her childhood best friend, a werewolf on the run named Tam. And after helping Tam fend off a horse demon in the woods, Nova learns that there are dark forces eager to claim the power of wolves, and it’s only together that they’ll be able to stop it. This graphic novel has it all: sweet, sapphic romance, teen witches, werewolves, magical bookstores, and all the feels.
A Psalm for the Wild-Built by Becky Chambers
It makes sense that most of my recs for Legends and Lattes read-a-likes would be cozy fantasy since that’s the genre that book falls into. But cozy sci-fi hits some of those same notes, and A Psalm for the Wild-Built in particular, has a lot of similarities fans will love. Not only does this novella follow a tea monk (yes, that would be a monk who serves tea from a traveling caravan), but it also features a really lovely and heartfelt friendship between said monk and a wild robot reminiscent of the found family friendships we see in Legends and Lattes. The Monk and Robot duology is full of introspection on what it means to be human — or robot — and to live a good life.
How to Get a Girlfriend (When You’re a Terrifying Monster) by Marie Cardno
A dimension-exploring witch and an eldritch monster find unexpected romance while trying to go unnoticed (and avoid being consumed) by the Endless. Sian is just thrilled not to have been immediately consumed when she managed to get her portal to the Endless dimension to work. But a shape-shifting tentacle monster keeps popping up and trying to flirt with her. And as much as Trillin wants this human witch to notice her, she’s also trying really hard to keep them both from being eaten. What’s a tentacle creature trying to figure out their own personhood to do?
The Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches by Sangu Mandanna
In Britain, witches are a very secretive set. Mika Moon is no different. But when she’s offered a job teaching three young girls how to be witches, she’s too intrigued not to show up. And when it turns out the girls really are witches being raised together by a cadre of nonmagical caretakers, she knows she has to help — even if doing so breaks all the rules. But the more time she spends with the children and their makeshift family, the more Mika falls for them. Even the standoffish librarian who loves the girls like they’re his own begins to grow on her. But there’s a reason witches aren’t supposed to gather. And soon, Mika will have to reckon with whether the consequences of staying together are worse than being separated.
The Cybernetic Tea Shop by Meredith Katz
Instead of a coffee shop like in Legends and Lattes, imagine a tea shop run by a centuries-old robot trying to keep her late owner’s dream alive. Now enter a wandering AI repair technician who’s never settled down in her life, and you’ve got the perfect recipe for a sweet romance. But growing anti-robot sentiment threatens the tea shop, and it’s only if they work together and trust each other that Clara and Sal will be able to make it through.
Vanessa Yu’s Magical Paris Tea Shop by Roselle Lim
As if being able to see fortunes in people’s tea leaves wasn’t bad enough, Vanessa Yu’s parents have decided to address her nonexistent love life by hiring a matchmaker from Shanghai. Even worse: the day before meeting the matchmaker she foresees her own death in a traffic accident. There’s no way Vanessa will be able to move forward with her life as long as she’s stuck with these abilities. So when an opportunity to join her eccentric aunt in Paris comes along, she jumps at the chance. And doing a little matchmaking of her own, trying to set up her aunt with a long-lost love, might be just the thing she needs to figure out her life.
That Time I Got Drunk and Saved a Demon by Kimberly Lemming
What if, instead of settling down after her adventuring days, Legends and Lattes had been all about Viv being dragged on an adventure with a handsome someone when all she’d wanted was to have some peace and quiet? Yeah, that’s pretty much this book. After getting drunk and saving a demon, Cinnamon is dragged on a quest to help Fallon save his people from an evil witch. She’d probably be more annoyed if he didn’t keep burning his shirt off, though, TBH. This is the quirky, comedic fantasy romance of your dreams.
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