Review: Cup of Joe (Bold Brew #1) by Annabeth Albert

Title: Cup of Joe (Bold Brew #1)

Author: Annabeth Albert

Publisher: Self-publishing

Publication Date: February 25, 2021

Genre: Contemporary, Romance

Format: eBook

Rating: 3 Stars 


Sometimes an ordinary Joe is all you need…

Newbie barista Levi Miles is having a bad day in the middle of a bad month. He’s trying to figure out post-graduation life, and a recent breakup hasn’t helped. The one bright spot? The charming blue-collar customer with the simple order and reassuring voice.

Electrician Joe Simmons can make anything light up—except his love life. As he gets older, he remains unsure about what he wants from a relationship. But an innocent flirtation with the fresh-faced barista is exactly what his ego needs.
Levi doesn’t need a boyfriend. Or a Daddy. But bantering with Joe feels so good, and when their tentative friendship takes a turn for the sexy, a summer fling seems fun. Exploring long-held desires brings them closer with each steamy night, and the idea of parting gets harder.

But Levi’s only in town temporarily, and the end of summer is approaching. Both are reluctant to disclose their feelings, but pushing past their fears may be the only way to keep this special thing going. Can they order up a happy ending before time runs out?

Cup of Joe is a stand-alone novel in the multi-author Bold Brew shared universe centered around an inclusive coffee shop set in a fictional small city. Each steaming hot coffee shop romance can be enjoyed alone, but collect all ten for the most fun! This 53,000 word age gap story contains a reluctant Daddy, lots of fluffy steam exploring new desires, low angst, and a guaranteed happy ending!


The first entry in a new multi-authors series, Albert’s A CUP OF JOE set the premises that would be the center as well the name of the series – Bold Brew – rather nicely. Taking the spot on this fast pace, mild-kinky, and steamy age gap romance were on his summer break barista Levi and electrician Joe. The attraction between the two leading men were off the chart from the start. 

A CUP OF JOE is a feel good read for me; no radical baggage on either men’s side (other than the usual crappy ex). I loved the complementing traits between the two characters, each served as the yin to the other’s yang. The alternate POV gave voice to both men’s insight – often laying bare their feeling and insecurities. The teasing play that developed was cute; even when the love scene was a tad too much to my liking. Nothing too kinky, though. 

What I come to expect of Albert’s books was the support system one or (as the case oh here) both characters had. Levi and Joe’s close relationship with their family was the cream of the top! I guess I’m at that age where I found malicious on a contemporary romance tiring. 

This book also introduced a number of interesting characters that I suspect would have their own stories on the next books. I’m just hoping (as it was hinted Bold Brew catered to BDSM community) that the kink wouldn’t be too heavily featured on the next stories for me to read. Here’s hoping 🤞🏽. 

Copy of this book is kindly given by the author in exchange for an honest review.