St. Martin's Press | August 2018 | 320 pgs
Source: Library

In her first installment of the Noodle Shop Mystery series (Death by Dumpling), Vivien Chien introduces us Lana Lee; an Eurasian woman who helps her family run the Ho-Lee noodle restaurant at an Asian Village in Cleveland, Ohio. When a man was found dead after consuming their noodle house's shrimp dumplings, Lana knew it was no accident considering almost everyone knew of his allergy to seafood. Worst of all, Lana was the one who delivered the food to him so she had to find out the truth surrounding his death. During the investigative course, she met detective Adam Trudeau and although they didn't admit it, they've some feelings for each other. 

In this second installment, Lana is left in charge of the restaurant while her parents left for Taiwan for an emergency family matter. She has had plans to look for a job and even landed herself an interview, and it seems she has no choice but to remain where she is. Meanwhile, she has gone on a few dates with Adam and wonder if they're officially a couple. These are what has been occupying her mind until her friend and her new husband are found dead in their souvenir shop, which is just next door to their noodle restaurant. Once again, Lana finds herself in the midst of the mystery. 

Lana knew she shouldn't meddle into the case; after all Adam did mention about his concern especially if it involves her safety but Lana knew there is more than meets the eye. She knew the couple wasn't the suicidal type and on top of it they were newlyweds so there is no reason for them doing so despite the speculations. So to find out the truth surrounding her friend’s death, Lana decides she should look around for more information. It is also at this time that two women began to show up respectively; each claiming to be the ex-wife of the dead man and they're here to settle the shop property. While Lana is skeptical about their statements, she soon finds something more about her friend’s husband which makes this case more mysterious and complicated.  

I was pleased to say that I was captivated by this series so far and Lana continues to intrigue me with her wits and her straightforward demeanour. I'm also interested to find out more about her relationship with Adam as the series go and hopefully the third installment will see both of them has moved on to the next level.  

As for the mystery plot, it wasn't fast paced as compared with thrillers as it focused more on the characters (developments) but the mystery still keep you guessing till the end. Overall it was a satisfying read and I wonder what's in store for her next installment, Murder Lo Mein

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12 Responses
  1. Kay Says:

    I think I told you earlier when you reviewed the first book that I saw the author at a mystery conference last year. I loved her blue hair. So cute! Anyway, I liked what she had to say and I've meant to pick up the first book. I'll try to do that. This one sounds fun as well.

  2. Lark Says:

    This does sound like a fun mystery series. And a nice change from psychological thrillers with dark twists and turns. :)

  3. Melody Says:

    Kay - Yes, I remember you telling me about meeting this author at a mystery conference. So fun to be able to meet them in person! I hope you'll enjoy this series when you get to it, Kay.

  4. Melody Says:

    Lark - I really enjoyed reading this series. Plus the food theme had me salivating, lol.

  5. jenclair Says:

    I still haven't gotten around to the first book you reviewed. I need to do that--not much point is adding books to my list if I never get around to reading them!

  6. Angela Says:

    This sounds like a fun book. I've never read a mystery book before, but I've been wanting to branch out and try a few. I bought a few at the end of last year, but I haven't read them yet.

  7. Iliana Says:

    Thank you for adding the recap from the first book. Helps to give us the background on the characters. This sounds like a fun, cozy series!

  8. Melody Says:

    Jenclair - So many books, so little time, isn't it? Hope you'll enjoy this series, Jenclair.

  9. Melody Says:

    Angela - This is a fun series and I'm glad I read them. I can't wait for the next installment already! Hope you'll enjoy the mystery books you bought, Angela.

  10. Melody Says:

    Iliana - The first book left an impression on me and I'm glad the second book is another enjoyable read as well.

  11. Trupti Says:

    This sounds like a cozy mystery series.

  12. Melody Says:

    Trupti - Yes, it's a cozy mystery series and I enjoyed the first two installments. Looking forward to reading the next one.

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