With its one-of-a-kind hero, Chinese Cooking for Diamond Thieves is perfect for anyone who loves cooking, Chinese culture, bad jokes, and young love. Diamonds are forever . . . unless Chinese mobsters decide they want them back."
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2014-03-24
- Reviewer: Staff
Restaurant critic and nonfiction author Lowry’s wry debut novel combines a caper story with foodie culture in an entertaining mix. The fictitious Beddingfield College in Lancaster, N.H., has just expelled 21-year-old Tucker, who soon after meets beautiful hitchhiker Corrine Chang at an I-93 rest stop and wins her over with his Mandarin. He offers Corrine, who had been working as a gemologist at a Montreal diamond shop, a lift to Buffalo, N.Y., and realizes during the trip that she might be in trouble, when she receives a threatening message on her cell phone. After dropping her off in Buffalo, Tucker proceeds to St. Louis, Mo., to live with his friend Langston Wu and work as a chef at a Chinese restaurant. Shortly thereafter, Tucker learns that Corrine really is in trouble: her former employer, Mr. Sung, has disappeared with $15 million in diamonds, betraying the Flying Ghosts, a Chinese criminal gang. Lowry has produced a zestful first novel, with snappy dialogue, though readers may find the Chinese cuisine and slow-developing romance between Tucker and Corrine more appetizing than the familiar crime fiction ingredients. Agent: Sara Megibow, Nelson Literary Agency. (July)