Hello! Nix here! I am truly a sucker for a good James/Lily story! Even though I never write them, I do love to read them! And I also love that this is an AU Lily/James where they're not wizards and didn't go to Hogwarts.
Anyway, this story was super sweet from start to finish. I really love how James and Lily met and slowly got to know each other before they finally got the hint that they were into each other. And I've never had an orange cardamom latte but it certainly sounds delicious.
I especially loved Lily's reaction to James not being one of her bosses and how she openly flirted with him after Sirius told her about James' feelings.
This was truly a wonderful read!
OH MY GOD I AM ONLY AT THIS LINE: “Oh, God bless,” she mutters as she writes his name on a paper cup AND ALL I I CAN THINK IS HOLY EFF SHE LOVES HIM TAYLOR THIS IS AMAZING I HAVE SO MANY THOUGHTS
I HAVE JUST FINISHED THIS WHOLE THING IS AMAZING! the last two lines are amazing, be still my beating heart--the coffee is that much sweeter. you are killing me. i will look back on this piece forever when you decide to break my heart with complex in the next few weeks
Sirius Black the coffee shop owner is amazing and James the coffee snob! It's the best friend duo I never knew I needed. THIS BEGINNING! Lily coming in and surprising them with her amazingly perfect coffee. James trying to convince himself that she'll make terrible coffee because she's already so pretty and perfect and british AND THEN SHE DOESN'T SHE MAKES AMAZING COFFEE AND I CANNOT WITH HIS REACTION IT'S SO PERFECT! They have to hire her and naturally they do and then I was SO SURPRISED THEY MADE IT A MENU ITEM AND SHE WASN'T JUST SNEAKING HIM SECRET ORANGE CARDAMOM LATTES THIS WHOLE TIEM BUT THIS IS SO MUCH BETTER HE GETS A SECRET NAUGHTY LATTE LATER ON!!
I feel like James would be a regular no matter what since it's his bff's coffee shop but Lily makes it THAT MUCH BETTER for him and their flirty banter is SO FREAKING CUTE! i should start adding an extra shot omg i love this. the instagram scene was amazing and that he feels like a 12 year old boy when she follows him is even better!
I think I'm at the end again? I CANNOT BELIEVE LILY DID NOT SEE THAT JAMES IS IN LOVE WITH HER! omg when she has to wheel a date out of him and he responds by kissing her i am dead this is amazing and sirius is all like just dont ruin my countertops.
EVERYTHING IS AMAZING THIS IS PERFECT THEY ARE PERFECT YOU ARE PERFECT!! also for december rvg go gold
Hi Taylor! Here for December's RvG Review Battle!
I have to admit that I've been lurking for the past couple of months and have actually been reading all the wonderful stories that you've been posting - so it's about time you actually get some reviews for them, really. Modern Muggle Jily AUs are the only thing that I've really been reading much of lately, and that's definitely mostly due to your AP :P You write these stories so well - despite the setting around the characters being completely different, you still manage to capture the essence of each character really well and it just makes these stories so fun to read.
My favourite thing about this story was probably your characterisation of James. We know he was one of the Marauders and he loved playing pranks, but I think all too often - particularly when the characters are in a Muggle setting without a war immediately threatening them - people forget the more serious side of his character. His job as an immigration lawyer is so fitting for that, and I can definitely imagine him trying to help people that way when he sees the need for it. (Shoutout to Dumbledore and McGonagall for running the firm, too!)
Him being so flustered when Lily arrived in the coffee shop for her interview was brilliant, too - it contrasted so well with his professional side as a successful lawyer, and fits with his canon character. He seems to do a much better job of hiding how much he likes Lily in this story than in the books, though :P
(I don't drink coffee but this drink sounds so good that it's almost enough for me to want to try it.)
Lily as a feminist who's working alongside her studies and is so passionate about things she believes in fits really well with her character, too. In the books they both care enough to fight for what they believe in and risk their lives for it - there's no way that they wouldn't be passionate about modern politics and all the situations happening at the moment (that's putting it politely - I liked your nods to those, though).
You captured the chemistry between the two of them really well, and it was just so cute to read them flirting with each other and getting closer, and I loved that Lily was the one to make the first move (albeit after Sirius had nudged her in the right direction). I can kind of imagine book Lily being the one to make the first move eventually after rejecting James in the past, and this fit really well. This was just so cute and fluffy and I loved it!
I cannot emphasize how much I love Modern Muggle Jily AUs. They are my FAVE. And AUs in which one of the characters is a lawyer (my future career)? EVEN BETTER!
The imagery you weave into your narrative is unbelievable--I can almost taste the orange cardamom (and where can I get one of those coffees?!) and see the logos on the coffee sleeves. Everything pairs so well with Lily's gorgeous hair and James's lawyer/hipster aesthetic and I. Just. Can't. with this ship in this setting!!!
One thousand kudos to you and your brilliant coffeeshop AU to end all coffeeshop AUs! I will definitely be coming back to your author page to read more!
Wow, Sirius owns a coffee shop, how cool! I seem to remember seeing a little bit of chatter on Twitter about this story concept, and you delivered with gold stars! I can totally see him enjoying store-ownership in a place like this. I love how you make subtle jabs at his organizational abilities, with Remus doing the prep work for his interviews.
And poor James, he had no idea what hit him when that girl walked through the door. It's cute the way he's trying to keep calm in the face of such brilliance. I love the way you keep the progression of things casual in spite of all the inner turmoil. It's fun to read about how unbalanced he is without all the over-the-top flailing. It definitely shows a more mature character than the James from school days that we are accustomed to seeing. Of course, as an associate at a law firm, he's got to have a lot of poker face practice. And aww, they're mutuals on Instagram!
For an AU, you hit all the right notes. James is great, with his career and his awkwardness, but still his incredible fascination with the girl who knocks his socks off. Lily is smart and a little sassy, and takes things into her own hands when she knows what she wants. Sirius is smirky and playful with his friends, and even though Remus never showed up in the fic, he was still very present, keeping Sirius organized behind the scenes.
You had so many little nods to canon that I felt like I knew these people at the beginning of the story. By the end of the first paragraph, I felt like I was reading about old friends, and that's what fanfic is really all about for me. Kudos to you for providing a familiar atmosphere inside a mundane setting. The slow burn progression was spot on. This was a fantastic read, and I enjoyed every minute!
Hey Taylor! Here for our swap! (And for the first time in ages I'm not having to type it on my phone!) I went for this one bc I'm still in love with your other Jily Muggle AU and needed another, haha.
Um so first of all after reading this I suddenly REALLY want a fancy latte with leaf patterns in the foam, but the nearest coffee place is probably like 75 miles away *sobs*
But anyway on to the story. Gah, I just loved this. I loved the little nods to canon and the fact that even though these characters are in a totally different setting, they're exactly the same people. And how even the characters who don't appear in the story still have a presence there (thinking specifically of Remus, who never shows up in the narrative but is still present and perfectly portrayed in his organization of the ingredients list and everything).
James being an immigration lawyer and Lily being a feminist who went to Oxford and loves locally owned coffee and is very political (HA, I loved the dig at brexit and 45) - all this was so perfect and fits in with exactly what i'd imagine of them outside of the wizarding world. James always struck me as the sort of person who uses his privilege to help those who aren't - seeing how in canon the rest of the Marauders were misfits in a way and he sort of took them under his wing, so to speak (idk that's just how I see it?) - but the notion of him being an immigration lawyer fits SO perfectly with that. And of course, Feminist/Activist Lily is and has always been my headcanon. I literally can't get over how perfect their Muggle world selves are in this fic. This story is making me want to find even more Muggle Jily AU's. ARE YOU WRITING MORE? ♥
I also love that the coffee shop is called Padfoot and Prongs! Even the little things like the reason Sirius was able to open the shop was because of financial help from his uncle - I love the way you've woven little canon details to make this NYC coffee shop story still feel familiar like the characters we know and love. And the deer puns on the coffee cups, which I love because it ties in the Animagus thing however obscurely, and also Sirius' fondness for puns based on his own name. (Which... I can't remember if he actually did that in canon or if it's just a fan thing? I know he made puns about the House of Black though. /tangent)
James is so adorable. I loved how you wrote his relationship to Lily as well - like he's still pining for ages, as canon-James does, but he doesn't want to ask her out when she can't walk away (and I mean, as oblivious as he is about her feelings for him, I really appreciate that he is this respectful and is careful not to be a jerk. Men of the world, take notes please) Their flirting and banter is SO fluffy and cute. And ha it's hilarious that nothing would have happened at all if Sirius hadn't told Lily. With the way James was tiptoeing around his feelings and too oblivious to pick up on Lily's flirting, someone had to be obvious, thank Merlin for Sirius who has never heard of the word discreet.
Ok this review is all over the place but just know that i loved this story so much. Thank you for the swap!!
Oh my God, yessss. This was perfect. Flirty and funny and fluffy (all the "f"s!), so it didn't feel like 5500 words at all. You got the banter between James, Lily, and Sirius true to the versions of them I have in my head, which is saying something after so many years of them being my OTP.
I loved the references to canon Marauder stuff - James working for two of the professors, Padfoot & Prongs being the name of the cafe, references jobs similar to their typical canon post-school things outside of the Order.
I am pumped that you plan on doing more Jily AUs in the future, because I am down for more of this sort of thing.
So I read this when you first posted it because how on earth could I refuse a Coffee Shop Jily? But I didn't leave a review because I was on my phone. Now I'm back with the review you deserve because OH BOY. THIS STORY.
First of all, I love all the canon references, like the name of the coffee shop. It's so freaking charming how you can weave those into the story to remind us that we're reading about characters we know and love, but in a new light. AU's are suddenly my jam but it's really nice to be reminded of canon, too. You strike such a beautiful balance.
I also love all the references to modern day, like how politically-involved Lily is and how James is an immigration lawyer. It warmed my heart and it made the characters come to life. Lily is and always has been a spitfire in canon, and they way that translates into this story is magical.
Sirius. Oh Sirius. I love everything about him here. That he owns the coffee shop, that he asks for James's advice, that he's the one to "spill the beans" about James's feelings for Lily. He is the perfect foil to James, who is so freaking clueless in this story that it's actually adorable.
The slown burn, though. THE SLOW BURN. Part of that is James's fault for being an utter idiot, but honestly, it's perfect nonetheless. I love how they dance around each other and how Lily just accepts that James is now a permanent feature in the cafe. I love how he falls in love with her through coffee and how he refuses to pay a discounted rate and how Lily loves him even more for it. You include so many little details that breathe so much life into this pairing. It's not just a generic romance, it's 100% Jily, and I didn't know how much I needed it until I read it.
Please never stop writing. Your prose just kills me every time. <3
You know what was stupid? Reading this at night. Because now I really want a cup of coffee, but if I drink some now, I won't be able to sleep. *sighs* I should have read this in the morning when I could have paused after paragraph six when the cravings hit me. And heck, I don’t even like fruity coffee! But as soon as Lily made that orange cardamom, I was like “Gimme!” So, well done for making me want something I don’t even like!
The thing I love about AUs is that you can keep some things from the canon story and leave out other things. Or change things. And there ends up being easter eggs hidden throughout the story. For example, like how the name of the cafe was Padfoot and Prongs. Or the names Benjy Fenwick and Mary MacDonald. Little things like that made me smile.
What was really different from canon (but I liked anyway!) was James and Lily’s relationship. Lily was the one who had to ask James out, to prompt him to ask her. I think you still managed to keep James’ character intact though. I don’t know how though… like I get a very James-ish vibe from your James, but he didn’t excessively ask her out. Fascinating. I’d love to know how you constructed them, James in particular.
Anyway, well done!
Reviewed for Gryffindor’s RvG Challenge - Go GOLD
I don't even want to talk about how much coffee went into the writing of this, because every time I started, I was just like, 'huh, you know what would go well with this writing? MORE COFFEE.'
That's one of my favorite things about AUs as well - throwing in canon details in their own way. And I definitely did something a little different with their actual relationship, but I'm SO happy you thought James was well-constructed. I just always picture him as this giant dork who's only halfway successful at covering it up, and that's kind of how he came to be this way in this story.
Thanks for the review!!
I'm not repeating my dumb twitter joke of this story being rated M for mmm coffee (oh heck i did anyway) but just know it was at the forefront of my mind the entire time I read this.
Padfoot & Prongs Coffee Co.!!!!! I'm in love.
JAMES IS THE CUTEST. TAYLOR. HE'S THE CUTEST. Look I meant to make this a really nice invoved review, I really did, but I'm sorry. It's too cute for my words.
Hi Paula!! I loved your dumb twitter joke the first time, and I love it this time as well. asdfhkj;l James is a disaster and a really adorable one at that, but I'm so happy you enjoyed this and found it cute. <3
This review is the reason I had to add 'the gym' to the list of public places I'm not allowed to read reviews in, because I turned into a smiley mess and undoubtedly looked a little weird being that happy while lifting heavy things.