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Natalie Tan's Book of Luck and Fortune

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3.62  ·  Rating details ·  1,251 ratings  ·  450 reviews
At the news of her mother's death, Natalie Tan returns home. The two women hadn't spoken since Natalie left in anger seven years ago, when her mother refused to support her chosen career as a chef. Natalie is shocked to discover the vibrant neighborhood of San Francisco's Chinatown that she remembers from her childhood is fading, with businesses failing and families moving ...more
ebook, 320 pages
Published June 11th 2019 by Berkley
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Roselle Lim This book is written for anyone who reads YA or adult fiction.

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3.62  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,251 ratings  ·  450 reviews


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Jennifer
Culture, family, romance, magic, and food. Oh, the food! Everything about this story can be felt and tasted, and it was such an enjoyable reading experience. I especially appreciated the generous attention given to the importance of preserving heritage and community as shown throughout these pages. However, this review does come with a warning: You most certainly will experience intense cravings for the fragrant dishes referenced here. But some risks are worth taking. Check it out.

My favorite qu
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Helen Hoang
Dec 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book. It's warm and bubbly and filled with magic, community, and great food. They need to make a movie of it, and you want to read it. And then watch it.
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
On sale now! Review first posted on Fantasy Literature:

A bitter, ongoing quarrel with her mother about her career plans to be a chef led Natalie Tan to leave her San Francisco home in anger. Seven years of stubborn silence and globe-wandering later, Natalie is called home by a neighbor at her mother’s passing. She still deeply desires to be a chef and to have her own authentic Chinese restaurant, like her grandmother Qiao had done many years earlier, and now she’ll have the chance: Natalie has i
...more
Hamad
Jun 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019-reads, arcs, e-books
“Wishes are worth nothing because there’s so many of them. If they turned into stars, there will be no sky left.”

🌟 There is something magical about books in the magic realism genre, I mean not literally because that would be obvious but I mean in my relationship with these books. The first book I read in this genre was a big NO for me, the same for the second when I decided the genre is just not for me and I won’t be reading more books in it. I read 3 books after that because I always realize
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Tucker

Many thanks to Berkely for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review
Such was the beauty of sadness. It turned the hollowness of the heart into something as beautiful as the loss it suffered.

Well, this is awkward. Being sent ARCs is such a blessing that I can’t even begin to describe but it always makes me feel so bad whenever I end up hating a book I’m sent. That said, they ask for honest. And they’re about to get it. (sorry, Berkley)

So, what’s this book about?
Natalie Tan’s Book o
...more
Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
Such a cute, whimsical read! ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ 🌉

Natalie Tan is a chef, though her mother never accepts the idea of that career. The two have been estranged for more than seven years when Natalie finds out her mom has passed away.

When Natalie returns home to her beloved Chinatown in San Francisco, she finds it not as exciting and well-performing as it was in her youth. She also finds out she’s the beneficiary of her grandmother’s restaurant.

Natalies visits the neighborhood seer who reads her tea leaves.
...more
Toni
Jun 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019
This book was a delightful surprise. Light, enjoyable, magical and, above all, delicious, as food and savouring food is an integral part of this wonderful debut novel by Roselle Lim.

Natalie Tan gets the worst kind of telephone call. Her agoraphobic mother Miranda was found dead just outside their family house in Chinatown of San Francisco. Natalie left home seven years ago, having committed the worst sin in her culture, the sin of not respecting her mother's wishes. Natalies has always dreamt of
...more
Susanne  Strong
5 Lovely Stars!

Be Still My Little Heart “Natalie Tan’s Book of Luck & Fortune” was completed unexpected, an absolute gem! Once I started reading I completely fell for it and I think you will too!

Natalie Tan returns home to Chinatown upon the loss of her mother to whom she had not spoken in seven years. Both had a falling out over Natalie’s chosen career - she wanted to be a chef like her Grandmother, Laolao. Upon returning home, she finds that Chinatown is no longer prospering as it once wa
...more
Katie B
This was a cute story that worked quite well as a lazy Sunday afternoon read. And while the cultural aspects certainly enhanced the story, I do think some other elements fell flat in terms of providing substance. I guess what I'm trying to say is I didn't feel a meaningful connection to the main character and storyline as much as I assume the author was aiming for.

Natalie Tan left the San Francisco Chinatown neighborhood she grew up in with dreams of attending culinary school. Years later she r
...more
Alexa
Apr 16, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Buddy read with Madalyn & Melanie!

3.5 stars. I truly enjoyed a lot of the aspects of this novel - the depictions of food and the process of cooking, the culture that wove itself into the tale, the mix of characters as well. I do think it might translate even better as a film, because it would be so fun to see all the cooking parts in front of my eyes!
Corina
With each new debut author from this publisher comes an even more gorgeous cover that just invites the reader to pick it up.

Natalie Tan’s Book of Luck and Fortune was a sweet and charming debut novel.

It was light on romance, which doesn’t make this a traditional romance novel, but also just confirms that illustrated covers can be a bit misleading. Also the romance is built on insta love which was surprising to me – I never would have expected it in this novel. But it makes sense since the romanc
...more
Vicky Who Reads
Jun 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a book that absolutely demands to be savored. And savor, I did.

It's beautiful and a little heartbreaking and absolutely a masterpiece. Sentimental, but subtle in its execution, Natalie Tan's Book of Love and Fortune is something truly extraordinary with how Natalie explores grief, intergenerational family, and culture, all wrapped up with subtle hints of magic and poetry--and delicious recipes too.
Hollis
Apr 23, 2019 marked it as did-not-finish  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook, arc
DNF at 46%

I hate to be mean but I'm pretty sure I requested an ARC, not a cookbook. While there is a certain amount of magic described by Lim and the healing art of cooking and connection as found in Chinese culture, I'm sorry to say I was bored instead of bewitched.

This would probably make a great tv adaptation or movie but it fails to enthral as a novel.
Dani - Perspective of a Writer
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The Buzz

I actually saw this listed on a #YARC2019 twitter recommendation and was so happy that I went for it. I've been neglecting contemporary reads and this was just what I needed. I like that its adult but that new adult aged readers will super identify with it to.

I will admit that the title is a mouthful! I wouldn't have chosen it but it does totally suit the story. And there is something totally perfect about the cover. It suits the atmosp
...more
Linden
Apr 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Natalie, living in Montreal when she learns that her estranged mother has died, goes back to San Francisco’s Chinatown to attend to the details. Her mother suffered from agoraphobia, and Natalie learns how much the people in the community had helped her. Natalie loves to cook (and provides the reader with many recipes), but does she have the talent and the strength of her late grandmother to reopen the family restaurant which closed many years ago? This book had so many things I liked: vividly d ...more
Madalyn (Novel Ink)
*3.5 stars*

I enjoyed this one, and it definitely made me hungry, but some of the plot threads felt a bit disjointed, and I think I wanted to love it more than I did. i did really appreciate how the author brought Natalie’s Chinatown neighborhood and all its residents to life. It’s a debut that reads very much like a debut, if that makes sense— which isn’t a bad thing! Just something to know going in. Full review TK!
Nafiza
I read an early copy of this and enjoyed the way magic and reality met and were woven together to create a truly delicious book that will be a gourmand's delight. I look forward to reading the finished version as I reckon it's going to be even more amazing.
Katie Zhao
Aug 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Sometimes you read a book that makes you cry, that's so deeply personal to your lived experience that it crushes your heart and fills it up at the same time. NATALIE TAN'S BOOK OF LUCK AND FORTUNE is one such book for me.

This book has everything my Chinese diaspora heart could ever want. A strong Chinese heroine who harbors a deep appreciation for her immigrant parents and grandparents; the use of food to bring love and people together; magic in both life, and that which exists beyond our world
...more
Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)
Lim's debut novel is indeed every bit as magical, emotional, and heart warming as it claims to be.

Full of grieving, moving on, finding oneself, and a community coming together to help their own, it truly is one you don't want to miss out on and will leave a lasting impression.

Realistically told with issues that anyone can relate to, it truly was beautifully told as it slowly unfolded and family issues and secrets were revealed and one woman learned to move on, become someone she was always mean
...more
Sophia
The idea of exploring the world beyond the dragon gate of San Francisco's Chinatown through a heartwarming story of loss, love, and a dying neighborhood's hope seemed like just the thing. I read this book knowing it was a debut novel and shook my head with surprise because it felt rich in background, setting, situation, and characters in a way that one doesn't normally experience in a first book.

Natalie has been kicking about around the world for the last seven years carrying around hurt pride t
...more
Anna


I had high hopes for this, and sadly ended up disappointed.


Overall, this felt like a wholesome Lifetime movie with a heavy dose of magical realism, and steeped in Chinese culture and cuisine.

Plot: Natalie Tan grew up in San Francisco's Chinatown with her agoraphobic mother. She left home when she was 21 and has been estranged from her mother ever since. Natalie wanted to attend culinary school, but her mother strongly opposed it. In Asian cultures, filial piety is really important and the two n
...more
Jenna Friebel
Lovely and heartwarming and charming and magical. <3
Toya
Jun 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: edelweiss
My heart is still bursting at the seams after reading this incredible debut novel by Roselle Lim. I started this book yesterday morning and finished it in the same day. I even worked yesterday, but I keep stealing moments to get more of this delicious story. I just couldn’t put this book down.

Natalie Tan is a 28 year old Chinese-American woman who was born and raised the Chinatown district of San Francisco. She left in hopes to pursue her dreams of attending culinary school, but after failing ou
...more
Simone
When I first picked up this book, I thought I was picking up a romance. I think being published by Berkley always has that reflex of assuming the novel is a romance. While it's not entirely a romance with two protagonists that fall in love, it is a book about love. It's about the love you have for your family, for your neighborhood, for your roots, and for food.

Here's more about the book
Natalie Tan just found out her mother died, but as an intense agoraphobic, she hasn't left her house in years.
...more
Angela (Reading Frenzy Book Blog)
2.5 stars

I think I set myself up for disappointment with Natalie Tan’s Book of Luck & Fortune. I expected an epic Like Water for Chocolate meets The Joy Luck Club tale. What I got was a cute story, but one that failed to hold my interest.

If you read the synopsis, you pretty much know the entire first half of the book. Nothing substantial is added to the plot and the characters are not particularly developed. The second half of the book is perhaps a bit stronger, but I never felt truly invest
...more
Grace Li
Jan 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: yes
This feels like the book I've been waiting for my whole life. It is about food as healing, the way families fall apart and together, and the magic hidden in the corners of the world, all set against the fight to save a gentrifying Chinatown. Your life will be richer for having read this book.
Basic B's Guide
May 24, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Deliciously delightful I give this book 3.75 stars.

Do you remember the 90’s movie with Sarah Michelle Gellar called “Simply Irresistible”? If you thought that movie was cute you will probably appreciate Natalie’s story. Get ready to salivate over yummy recipes and smile when food feeds the souls of friends and family.

“At the new of her mother’s death, Natalie Tan returns home. The two women hadn’t spoken since Natalie left in anger seven years before, when her mother refused to support her chose
...more
Laura (lauralovestoread) Gelinas
When it comes to books, I have to admit I am always drawn into a story that involves food. I loved Natalie Tan’s Book of Luck and Fortune based on the cooking segments alone! Natalie Tan is a fan of cooking, so it comes as no surprise that she has plans to help her grandmother reopen the family restaurant in San Francisco’s Chinatown after learning of her Mother’s death.

This book resonates with the Chinese community and culture of Chinatown, and brings one another together through food. I think
...more
J. R.
Apr 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is so lovely. It is unlike anything I've ever read, yet it has elements that make me think of some of my favorites stories (Chocolat, anyone?). It has heart, family, love, and a touch of magic. Natalie was very relatable as a character and I was rooting for her the entire way. The people she meets along the way leap from the page, that you feel like they're real, your friends and family, and right there with you. I'm a tremendous foodie and have a soft spot for a sweet love story (and ...more
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Roselle Lim was born in the Philippines and immigrated to Canada as a child. She lived in north Scarborough in a diverse, Asian neighbourhood.

She found her love of writing by listening to her lola (paternal grandmother's) stories about Filipino folktales. Growing up in a household where Chinese superstition mingled with Filipino Catholicism, she devoured books about mythology, which shaped the fan
...more
“If my regrets and wishes were fireflies, the brilliance of their dance would turn night into day.” 0 likes
“Wishes are worth nothing because there’s so many of them. If they turned into stars, there will be no sky left.” 0 likes
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