May 14, 2023

Super Series Sunday: Noodle Shop Mystery

(Noodle Shop #2, #3 & #4) 

Super Series Sunday is a bookish meme hosted by Literary Marie. I encourage all of my fellow book bloggers and bookhearts to play along.
  • Binge read installments of a series.
  • Share your review/recommendations below.
  • Include the titles, authors and series names.

Noodle Shop #2
"Nothing like a little fictional drama to take you away from the real stuff." ~ pg. 11

My 1st Super Series Sunday pick is Dim Sun of All Fears, the second book in the Noodle Shop series by Vivien Chien. Ho-Lee Noodle House is famous for its noodles, tea and take-out. Lana Lee is a dutiful daughter working at the family's restaurant, even though she would rather have a "real" job.

Just when she lands an interview, her parents take off for an extended time in Taiwan, leaving Lana in charge. She knows nothing about running the place but there is no other person her mom trusts—and who's available. Then like a true cozy mystery, newlyweds in the souvenir shop next door are found murdered. With the help of roommate Megan and to the dismay of kinda-sorta boyfriend Detective Adam, Lana Lee pries into the case and ultimately solves it.

I learned more about the main character Lana Lee more in this second installment. Her logic, romance and family dynamic was explained in a show-not-tell way. I did not mind the story including personal life happenings with the mystery taking a backseat. In fact, I didn't even bother to figure out who the murderer was until around 80% through the eBook. And that's when it was a slow reveal until the last few pages and Epilogue. Good writing balance!

Author: Vivien Chien
Published: August 2018
Pages: 291
Edition: eBook
Genre: Mystery
Rating: 🖤 🖤 🖤 🖤

Noodle Shop #3
"He was the professional, and I was just a gal with an overactive imagination and a ratty notebook." ~ 80%

My 2nd Super Series Sunday pick is Murder Lo Mein, the third book in the series. My book binge continues. Lana Lee is officially the manager of Ho-Lee Noodle House. It is time for the annual Cleveland's Best Noodle Contest. Then a local food critic is found dead, face-down in a bowl of lo mein. Lana Lee along with boyfriend Detective Adam dig into the lives of everyone involved in the contest while saving the restaurant's reputation and her own innocence. 

This one is catered to the culinary cozy bookhearts with a surprise double murder. I like how Lana Lee and Megan brainstorm and sleuth their way through the mystery. Having a Detective for a boyfriend, being in a small community where everyone knows everyone makes it all the more personable. It has the theme of "There's a Murderer Among Us." I am definitely moving on to the next right now.

Author: Vivien Chien
Published: March 2019
Pages: 304
Edition: eBook
Genre: Mystery
Rating: 🖤 🖤 🖤 🖤

Noodle Shop #4
"And the Oscar goes to..." ~ 88%

My 3rd Super Series Sunday pick is Wonton Terror, the fourth book in the series. I totally read this series out of order but they can all be read as standalone thanks to the background Vivien Chien writes in the beginning of every book. Promise you won't be lost!

Wonton Terror centers around another popular festival in Asia Village called the Cleveland Night Market. Lana Lee and chef Peter are running the booth when an explosion in a food truck kills one of the workers and injures several others whom were nearby.

Time for Lana Lee and best friend/roommate Megan fall into sleuth mode, against the constant advice of boyfriend Detective Adam to not get involved. They uncover family drama, angry customers and a slew of suspects until the surprising ending.

In the spirit of Asia Village, I dedicated an entire day to reading Wonton Terror and settled in with an order of fried rice. Is that lame? Ah well, it felt appropriate and kept my stomach from rumbling with every mention of delicious food mentioned in the book. Honestly, the food was what kept me reading. Wonton Terror is the weakest of the series so far. Too predictable. Nevertheless, place your orders (food and book) and enjoy!

Author: Vivien Chien
Published: August 2019
Pages: 294
Edition: eBook
Genre: Mystery
Rating: 🖤 🖤

Now I am all caught up and ready to read the advance copy of Misfortune Cookie (#9) due to be published this summer. Bookhearts, at least start this mystery series if you haven't already. Or catch up like I did! Support the noodle-eating, doughnut lover, bookstore browser, colored hair author Vivien Chien.

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