What Are You Reading? Abbi Siler

My name is Abbi Siler and I own Abbi’s Teas & Things in Hillcrest on the corner of Ash & Kavanaugh Blvd. While I was born in Little Rock, most of my childhood was spent on the coast of North Carolina, but my mom grew up here and my Grami still lives in the house she grew up in over in the Kingwood neighborhood. My husband and I have been living in Hillcrest for five years and I opened the tea shop a little over two years ago with the hope to share my heart, my family, and my passion for tea with Central Arkansas. I previously worked in advertising and digital marketing where I was an adjunct instructor at Arkansas State University – College of Business and a digital director at a local advertising agency. In every job and every office, I have always had my tea shelf. I would write online copy for various tea distributors and estates across the world and they would, in turn, pay me in TEA! It’s always been a goal of mine to own a tea shop, and after some personal reflection (and some nudging from my mom) I did it! My most favorite thing about the tea shop is sharing my passion with young women who are still in grade school – they have big dreams and big ideas! I love hearing their stories, sharing mine, and letting them feel comfortable to be themselves here at the shop. Mom, Grami and I are all very voracious readers and we are always swapping books around. I also enjoy gardening and anything plant or flower-related!

What’s on your reading table right now?

I am currently reading The Giver of Stars by JoJo Moyes. I am really enjoying it – it’s about a troop of traveling librarians in Kentucky. The characters have so much spirit!

Is there a book you keep coming back to again and again?

There are always two books I come back to: East of Eden by John Steinbeck and The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman.

East of Eden I try to read every five or so years because the lessons I take away are different as I get older.

The Ocean at the End of the Lane is such a me book – I love it so much and it’s a fantastic short novel! Both have a spirit of humility and I love a strong ending with a powerful message.

What children’s book do you wish every child could read?

The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein – I actually don’t remember reading this book as a child, but in my 20s I read it and its message about the give-and-take relationship between friends, the earth, and those we love is so very powerful. I was also very fond of Madeline stories as a kid, too.