Most men know they have to be careful when picking out flowers for women. Though there are different interpretations, most people agree that red roses declare passion and love, while yellow roses mean you are firmly in the friendship zone, and white roses conjure up thoughts of weddings.

In the fictional town of Spinning Hills, both men and women have to be very careful when they’re choosing desserts at the Gypsy Fortune Café and Bakery. The three elderly owners of the popular hangout have devised a system for figuring out how their customer’s truly feel, and it involves analyzing their cravings. And when those cravings come from the heart, these matchmaking meddlers do not let up until they’re sure they’ve got you all sorted out.

According to Ruby Meriwether (a descendant of the Miami Valley Gypsies—who really did exist) and her peculiar brand of logic, a craving for crabapple pie means that you want to work things out with someone else. This is because crabapples are sour, but when you add sugar, vanilla, and cream, it all works out and becomes a very rich experience. The purpose of blueberry pie is to juice up and give a distinct flavor to those areas of life that feel vague. A craving for Irish cream pie means you have a need to sweeten the water of life. This is because the recipe for Irish cream pie calls for whiskey, and whiskey means “water of life” in Gaelic. The pie also contains loads of sugar, and the purpose of all that sugar is to sweeten life’s water.

I happen to think there’s a little truth in it all, and maybe even some science. There are times when I crave chocolate so badly, it feels as if one bite will straighten my entire life out. And there are quite a few studies that link this particular craving to our need for magnesium, and magnesium is involved in over 300 biochemical reactions in our bodies, so this makes sense to me. At least that’s what I tell myself every time I reach for chocolate!

In Needs a Little TLC, dandelion root tea is what helps sort Cassie out. Dandelions tempt people into picking them up and blowing the pretty white seeds all over the place, allowing more and more to grow and take over, and they can be real bullies. Cassie has a few dandelions in her life, and those dandelions helped tear her and Sam—her childhood best friend and first love— apart years before. But when she finds out how beneficial dandelion root tea is, she gains new perspective. And when Sam walks into the café … things come together.

Do you have any weird comfort foods or drinks? Have you ever analyzed why that particular food or drink makes you feel better?

About the Author

Inés Saint was born in Zaragoza, Spain. She’s bilingual and bicultural and has spent the last decade raising her fun, inspiring little boys and sharing her life with the man of her dreams. Her greatest joy is spending quality time with the family members and close friends who happen to provide the inspiration for both the nutty and wise things her characters say and do.

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Ines Saint Cover ArtNeeds A Little TLC

The Amador brothers are committed to a new beginning for their quirky, storybook town. But they’re learning that every house needs a heart to be a home…

Growing up, Cassie McGillicuddy was the one person who consistently made Sam Amador lose his steadfast outward cool. She was always full of both brilliant and harebrained ideas, and being around her had made him feel more alive.

Until her biggest harebrained idea of them all. Asking him to teach her how to be a good kisser. Soon after, they’d broken each other’s hearts, and she’d disappeared.

But now Cassie was back. And she meant business.