The Last Chinese Chef (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

“Caution: don’t read this one while hungry! Chinese food is a family experience - you plate up an assortment of tastes off the shared Lazy Susan in the middle of the table. And food is a love language just as surely as giving gifts or encouraging words. Eat up!”

— Lisa

Fictional food writing. Susan has a personal crisis (paternity claim against her late husband) and has to go to Beijing.  She's a travel writer and her editor says “while you're there, write about this guy who's opening a restaurant”.  It gets into the food culture of Chinese cooking; for example, family style eating with lazy Susan. Nicole Mones writes food to a degree that you can almost taste it as you read.  Caution: don't read hungry. --Lisa

— From 3-2-1 Spring


In her satisfying, sensual third novel, Nicole Mones takes readers inside the hidden world of elite cuisine in modern China through the story of an American food writer in Beijing. When recently widowed Maggie McElroy is called to China to settle a claim against her late husband’s estate, she is blindsided by the discovery that he may have led a double life. Since work is all that will keep her sane, her magazine editor assigns her to profile Sam, a half-Chinese American who is the last in a line of gifted chefs tracing back to the imperial palace. As she watches Sam gear up for China’s Olympic culinary competition by planning the banquet of a lifetime, she begins to see past the cuisine’s artistry to glimpse its coherent expression of Chinese civilization. It is here, amid lessons of tradition, obligation, and human connection that she finds the secret ingredient that may yet heal her heart.

Product Details
ISBN: 9780547053738
ISBN-10: 0547053738
Publisher: Mariner Books
Publication Date: June 1st, 2008
Pages: 278
Language: English