Lex Sakai’s family is big, nosy, and marriage-minded. When her cousin Mariko gets married, Lex will become the oldest single cousin in the clan. Lex has used her Bible study class on Ephesians to compile a huge list of traits for the perfect man. But the one man she keeps running into doesn’t seem to have a single quality on her list. It’s only when the always-in-control Lex starts to let God take over that all the pieces of this hilarious romance finally fall into place.
Camy writes Christian romantic suspense, contemporary romance, and cozy mystery as Camy Tang and Regency romance under her pen name, Camille Elliot. She grew up in Hawaii but now lives in northern California with her engineer husband and rambunctious dog. She graduated from Stanford University in psychology with a focus on biology, but for nine years she worked as a biologist researcher. Then God guided her path in a completely different direction and now she’s writing full time, using her original psychology degree as she creates the characters in her novels. In her free time, she’s a staff worker for her church youth group and leads one of her church’s Sunday worship teams. She also loves to knit, spin wool into yarn, and is training to (very slowly) run a marathon.
I could not have asked for a better book. Camy Tang is a phenomenal writer! The dialogue was entertaining and had me laughing out loud. Lex Sakai is a character to be reckoned with. She is strong, stubborn, and determined to make her way in the world, regardless of what her grandmother thinks is best for her. Aiden is patient, caring, and a bit close-minded (in the beginning). I loved watching their relationship blossom. I loved watching Aiden's relationship with the Lord blossom as well. Camy didn't make it feel rushed and she showed us, through side characters, how sitting back and listening and really trying to connect with the other person can open their eyes to the Lord.
The story, itself, was absolutely fantastic. I loved getting a look into the Japanese and Chinese cultures. It was interesting to see how Japanese Americans and Chinese Americans still practice some of their cultural norms. The message of the book is waiting on the Lord and seeking Him in all areas of our lives. Trust him with everything. Be patient and wait on Him. It was phenomenal to see how Lex's decisions affected her life and at the end she realized she made her life harder than it had to be. I absolutely loved it. I can't say enough great things about this book and I can't wait to get my hands on the next books in the series, Sushi Series.
**I received this book for free as part of Christian Fiction Devourers group giveaway on Goodreads.com. I was not required to give a review.**
Okay first and foremost, I don’t read many chic-lits. I am not a fan of the genre but I do read one once in a while. I am very selective when it comes to which one to pick. I don’t like books that describe in detail what the girl is wearing every time she goes out. I mean that’s just plain irritating. I understand when she is going to a party or a function or something like that. That’s brings me to the next point. I also don’t like books that describe endless partying. I mean come on. Write something. Where’s the story?
So what’s the point of whatever I have written? Nothing really. I just wanted to tell you that I read a chick-lit and I liked it and well it wasn’t all dresses and parties and that was nice.
Lex Sakai is a Japanese American 4th generation (I think) 30-ish year old woman. Her control freak grandmother wants her to find a boyfriend because after her cousin’s marriage she is the next in line to be married. But Lex is our tom-boyish heroine who has no interest whatsoever in dating because of something that happened to her 8 years back. Her grandmother threatens to withdraw the sponsorship money for Lex’s girl’s volleyball team. So Lex has no option but to find a guy till her cousin’s marriage.
So she prepares a list. As she’s a Christian, she lists some points from book of Ephesians. Sorry I am not a Christian so I have no idea what this book is about. But the points are what most of the girls would like to find in a guy.
She tries her best to date guys who fit her list but she keeps bumping into Aiden who is not exactly the type of guy she wants, mainly because he isn’t a Christian.
This book was good. The characters were fantastic, all of them, even the background ones. The situations were hilarious and the dialogues funny. Although I didn’t like the part at the end. (It’s something related to Aiden) But since this is Christian fiction it’s understandable. Perhaps Christian’s would understand it better. I didn’t. I wanted her to accept things as it is. But that’s not what happens. This book is also marketed as Romance (Romance with a kick of Wasabi). Although Aiden was an extremely adorable character, there should have been more footage (is that the right word) given to them. Otherwise for a chick-lit, this book is a fine one. Oh did I tell you there are descriptions of amazing mouth watering Japanese food in this book? Do not read it when you are hungry.
Sushi for one is actually a part of the Sushi series. This is the first book in the series.
A few too many worn plot twists to be really good. The guy the protagonist likes becomes a Christian. Certain family members seem one-dimensional. Too many "bad things" happen and are not really dealt with.
I think it's great though that this novel explores Japanese and Chinese culture and how Christianity fits in with it. I just believe it deserved a better plot and ending
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Camy Tang’s writing was definitely entertaining and had a lot of fun parts but also some serious scenes. I enjoyed Lex’s humorous and creative descriptions of the men everyone threw at her.
I also appreciated the way the author took Aiden’s journey from atheist to being interested in Church and Jesus. His best friend was a christian and gently pushed but never forced Aiden to church or made him feel less worthy because he was not Christian. Also the way the Pastor handled Aiden’s curiosity was very gentle but also challenged Aiden to search for answers.
I struggled a bit to connect with Lex. She was a very strong and driven person on one side (volleyball, work) but then also vulnerable with one big weakness (sensitive stomach). I think the way she tackled the finding a boyfriend was one of the main things I struggled to connect with. I enjoyed seeing how she overcome a very bad event in her past and also that when she finally realized she can’t control everything and should trust God and actually ask for His help how everything started to fall in place.
For me there was one thing I was a bit disappointed with and that was how Christian men were portrayed. They were either good and boring or handsome, interesting but players. Yes you do get both unfortunately but you also do get Christian guys who are good-looking, with great personality and interesting hobbies and who really strives to be Godly men.
I will continue this series because I enjoyed the dynamic and antics of this family and would like to see what happens with the other cousins.
Sushi for One is a rollicking, witty, romance novel and had so many things I really liked about it. At thrity, Lex is being told by her grandmother that she needs to find a serious boyfriend and gives her a deadline or else she will withdraw sponsorship from Lex' junior high girls' volleyball team. Lex is very much a tomboy as well as a "sportsaholic" and has some history in her past that makes it difficult for her to be comfortable in relationships with men. So everyone in her family decides they will help out. But all they seem to send her way are a bunch of "frogs." Lex is looking for a man who fills the requirements from her Ephesians "list" of qualities. As she goes from one "frog" to another, her list expands. Meanwhile one calamity after another takes place to send Lex' life out control. When she finds her "prince", it's the last person she ever expects and just "maybe" doesn't have all the qualifications on her list. Lex finds out that when she gives control to God life turns out a whole lot better.
I enjoyed the fact that Lex tried very hard to be herself and not let her family change who she was. She also had strong values and would not change them for her family either. The multicultural facet and the change in Lex' perspective on her own family members as well as her growth in faith were added bonuses in this story.
Great job Camy Tang. I look forward to reading more of your books.
I picked this up at the library looking for a quick "chick lit" read. I didn't notice that it was considered Christian literature until I got home. The story was cute, and kept moving. The "Christian" agenda wasn't my bag, but it was relatively minimal. A little brain candy with a predictable ending.
It’s good to read something outside of your normal reading box, and Camy Tang’s Sushi for One? fit the bill. A fun romp into Chinese culture, this novel gives an readers an interesting look into how life is for those stuck between generations, still trying to please the elderly members of their family, but at the same time bucking at the long-held traditions that come with them. Her quest to find a boyfriend to appease her very traditional grandmother starts out innocent enough, but then of course, complications arise, and that’s when the story really takes off.
Lex Sakai is a prickly yet sensitive character whose antics either had me laughing out loud or had my heart crying for her. Don’t be fooled by the quirky, light-hearted summary – at the heart of this novel is a story of healing and redemption. Lex’s journey to come to terms with traumatic events from her past was heartrending yet uplifting at the same time. And on a side note, I wasn’t expecting to be into the details about volleyball, but they were very well done & added a great layer to Lex’s character.
The romantic aspect was understated but fit wonderfully in the natural flow of the story. Aiden was a great compliment to Lex, being both patient and light-hearted in the times she needed it most. His character was more than just on the surface. His earnest search for faith never came across as preachy or on the nose, but rather came about in a natural progression that really hit home for me.
One thing I especially enjoyed the relationship between Lex & her also-prickly cousin Venus. Their grudging love for each other was often very funny and really rang true. The other surrounding characters were a colorful bunch, some I loved, some frustrated me to no end, and others I itched to know more of their story. We get hints of their stories to come, and I’m really looking forward to reading about Trish in book two!
Just a heads up - the back cover copy for this novel doesn't even begin to do it justice.
Volleyball fanatic Lex Sakai is single and just fine with that until she inherits the infamous family title of "Oldest Single Female Cousin" and her Grandma issues an ultimatum. She threatens to pull funding for the beloved girls volleyball team Lex coaches unless she buckles down and finds a boyfriend in time for her cousin's wedding in four months. Armed with her "Ephesians list" - requirements a guy has to meet in order to be "dateable" - Lex embarks on her quest to find a boyfriend and satisfy Grandma. Then job-wise she takes a significant pay cut, Grandma sabotages her efforts to land outside team sponsors so she can avoid the whole "dating" thing, and Aiden, the one man she's sure she should write off as unsuitable, keeps intruding on her life in unexpected ways. When her carefully constructed life comes apart at the seams, Lex is forced to re-evaluate who she's really been trusting with her future - herself or the Lord?
Probably one of the best ways to describe Sushi for One? is to think My Big Fat Greek Wedding, change the "Greek" to "Asian-American," throw in a deftly handled spiritual thread, and voila! - you have the recipe for a great chick-lit novel. Camy Tang delivers all of the humor, outrageous mishaps, witty dialogue, romance, and great food fans of the chick lit genre could wish for in spades. Lex is a wonderfully prickly, sassy heroine with a take-no-prisoners attitude towards life that masks heartbreaking hurts and fears. It's a great stroke on Tang's part to write the novel in third person instead of the first person point of view generally found in chick lit novels. While most of the novel is told from Lex's view point, the use of third person allows Tang to pepper the novel with scenes from Aiden's perspective, which walk the delicate line of being incredibly sweet without being sappy - it's wonderful to watch him fight his attraction to Lex even as he longs to be the one to break through her emotional barriers. The family dynamic is also one of the novel's greatest strengths. Lex doesn't come from the typically Christian background found in most CBA fiction - she and her best friends, also her cousins, (Trish, Venus, and Jennifer) are the only Christians in a mostly Buddhist family. Tang does a fantastic job of showing Lex negotiate the line between living her faith and being a witness and respecting her heritage and a family that doesn't understand her beliefs.
Sushi for One? is the hilarious, often poignant story of a woman who learns to cede control of her life and allow herself to be held in the arms of the God who loves her, whose plans for her life, romantic and otherwise, are far greater and more fulfilling than she could have ever dreamed. Camy Tang's debut novel shines with life and energy. I can't wait to read more about the "Sushi" cousins and thankfully the wait won't be a long one - the second novel, Only Uni, releases in February 2008!
This was one busy story. Not a dull moment at all. In fact, I think Lex is the unluckiest and clumsiest chick lit character I've ever met, poor thing. I wanted to scream, "no, no, no" right along with her when she kept getting hurt. Like she belonged to the bad luck (rather than joy luck) club. She had a lot of spunk and determination, though, or as someone else described her...pluck! At times her thoughts seemed younger than her stated 30 years--like when she referred to guys as boys. And I think I've learned more about volleyball reading this book than I ever learned watching the sport during the Olympics.
Sushi for One? was a romp through the eyes of a character who had a lot of reasons to be angry, and that came out often in her thoughts. As with most people who love God but are feeling hurt, she closed her heart off to prayer and fellowship to protect herself. As a result, she missed sensing God's safe touch on her life, though He never left her side.
The hero in this story was truly lovable. I think the fact that the author used third person POV and slipped the reader into the mind of this man helped a lot. He seemed absent often when Lex needed him, but considering he hadn't allowed himself to get close to Lex, this made sense. She needed space and he gave it to her. What a great guy! The author's tag line fits this story to a "T".
Sushi for One? is the kind of chick lit story that demonstrates...sometimes romance needs a kick of wasabi. And the powerful, touching ending should bring tears to your eyes. It did mine. I can't wait for the next installment!
Lex is a sports-obsessed 4th generation Japanese-American Christian who has been mandated by her grandmother to find a boyfriend in 4 months or funding the Lex's young girls volleyball team will be cut off.
Aiden is a non-Christian Physical Therapist who falls for Lex the moment he sees her -- though there are complications because he can't stand her best-friend/cousin Trish.
Oh there are always complications. I was hoping to get more insight into the cultural differences the of Japanese-American characters, but instead we are treated to the typical stereo-types without much explanation as to why the characters are that way.
It was a pleasant enough read, and I liked Aiden from the moment he was introduced, but I never warmed up to Lex and because of that I thought the book was only so-so. The ending felt rushed; Lex seemed rude and inconsiderate; and there were too many holes in the character development of the secondary characters. I understand that the cousins will probably be each getting their own book, but again, I think if the author had filled in some background of the Japanese-American culture it would have explained a lot about the characters and why they behaved the way they did.
Sushi For One? By Camy Tang Sushi Series Book 1 Alexis Sakai's life has just taken a few unexpected turns. The biggest one is that her grandma has declared she gets a serious boyfriend or else. And yes, her grandma has the power to enforce or else. Lex finds that going against Grandma can be like trying to climb a waterfall. She does keep running into one guy but he just don't fit her list of what she wants in a man.
This story is both serious and humorous. Four cousins have become Christians and they still struggle with their new beliefs at times. This series is about these four gals and their struggles with life and family. As the next four oldest single girls they are in the sights of the family. And it's a very, very large family. I find the story to be captivating and held my attention so it was hard to put it down.
Book 1.1 is The Sushi Toss, which is a short, free read on Camy Tang's blog. The Series continues with Trish's story in Only Uni, Venus's tale in Single Sashimi and finishes with Jennifer in Weddings and Wasabi. http://justjudysjumbles.blogspot.com/...
Lex has been given an ultimatum from her Grandma - find a boyfriend before her cousin's wedding or Grandma will pull funding for Lex's high school girls volleyball team. Lex is not particularly keen on finding a boyfriend but will do anything for her girls, so either she finds another sponsor for the girls or (gulp!) she needs to find a boyfriend.
Will Lex give the problem to God & let Him guide her - or will she go her own sweet way?
I was so bored reading this, really... the story just went round in circles, Lex complaining she couldn't find a guy, meeting some weird guy, then complaining again, meet lousy guy, complains about grandmother... Too many characters and none of them had any significant character developments.
I love the chick lit genre, but this was just flat & not funny at all. Sorry for this harsh review, this book just doesn't click with me :(
I've been wanting to read one of Camy Tang's novels for a while now, simply because there aren't a lot of non-Caucasian protagonists in Christian novels. This might sound like an odd complaint coming from the whitest girl on the planet, but I'm actually 1/8th Indian and have always thought of myself as Anglo-Indian.
That said, I did struggle to relate to Lex at the start of this novel. I might have a big Indian family, but we don't have the same stereotypical pressures that you'd imagine - instead of a doctor, lawyer and a minister, my grandparents ended up with a nurse, a graphic designer and a musician. And I don't think they mind! As for Lex herself, she and I have very little in common. I am the least athletic person in the world, and had horrible flashbacks of primary school volleyball games while reading this book. I might be clumsy, but nowhere near as bad as Lex, and I couldn't relate to her complaints about being too skinny because my struggle is that my figure is far more curvaceous than that of the average white British woman. And of course, I'm not a thirty-year-old single woman living at home. I'm a twenty-one-year-old married woman renting a house with my husband.
But I can definitely see how this book would resonate with women in Lex's position. At times it seemed like she had a lot going on in her life, but the issues she faced were typical of single women of her age in today's society, particularly when it came to struggling to buy her own home when her salary at work was cut, and navigating the dating pool. I never really saw much of the dating scene, having married the first guy I dated in college, but it did not sound fun from this book. Even if I couldn't relate to her situation, I could definitely sympathise.
I initially thought this was going to be a fun chick-lit novel about a woman hunting for her ideal man in an attempt to appease her grandmother, but it ended up being a lot more deep than that. The spiritual side of the novel seemed light, but towards the end I began to realise that Lex's desperate search for what she thought was her perfect man had a lesson to teach anybody, single or married. Taking matters into your own hands can be dangerous, and sometimes we do this simply because we don't want to ask God for help and receive an answer we don't like. Whether you're waiting for a boyfriend or a job or a miracle, it's difficult, and sometimes that forces us to make rash decisions and rush into situations we know very little about. This was a definitely a message I needed to hear, since my husband and I are currently looking for a new house, while waiting to hear back from an editor about my manuscript. It's tempting to leap into something, but sometimes it really is best to wait.
Despite my initial worry that I wouldn't find anything to relate to in this book, I was pleasantly surprise by the universal message that came out of Lex's man-hunt. Although I find Lex's big, crazy Asian family a little intimidating, I would rather like to read more about them sometime, even if just for the descriptions of the food. My husband and I probably cook Asian food more often than we eat traditional British meals, so that was definitely one of the appeals with this book. I might not be rushing out to buy the next book in the series, but it will certainly be going on my wishlist. Camy Tang definitely brings something new to the chick-lit market, even if some aspects of this book felt a little over-the-top at times. 3.5*
When I was helping Aunty Florence return her books (yes, she connects me to a lot of books), I came across this book called "Sushi For One"? Since I like basically anything Asian (fine, anything Japanese), I figured it couldn't hurt to buy this book. As a bonus, my sister was looking for some clean romances, which I think as a Christian rom-com, this book is perfect for her.
After a lot of dilly-dallying, I picked up the book and finished it amazingly quickly. This book has quite an interesting premise: Lex, our protagonist, is being forced by her grandmother to find a boyfriend within a month, or funding for the girl's volleyball club that she coaches will be cut off.
The closeness of the Japanese-Chinese American community was one aspect of the book that pleasantly surprised me. Here, it seems that no matter what, the Chinese (at least my family, or the older generation), harbours some bad blood due to World War II. Perfectly legitimate, although the snide remarks about me somehow being a traitor gets to me sometimes. After all that, it's quite adorable to see a closely-knit Chinese-Japanese American community.
And because most of the main characters are Asian-Americans, there are quite some interesting family dynamics at play. What wouldn't be out-of-place in a Hong Kong/Taiwan/Singaporean drama serial appears here, such as the domineering matriarch, the calling-in-favours thing (Lex lost a potential sponsor because her grandma has more influence than here), all sound familiar. I guess some things never change.
Besides all the Asian aspects of the book, which I thoroughly enjoyed, I think the God-aspect was also brought out pretty well. Lex isn't a perfect Christian and Aidan (the other main character) isn't even Christian to begin with. But their struggles seem very real, and Aidan's slow progression to Christianity, didn't seem very forced, although I would have liked to see more definite turning points in his spiritual journey.
I also admired the way she painted the Christian and non-Christian communities, warts and all. One really interesting episode happens when Lex is at a Church trying to get funding for her Volleyball team. One guy refuses to donate unless it's overtly evangelical, and the other will only donate to overseas missions - to which, Lex mentions how she wants the rest of her family (who are mostly Buddhist) to come to Christ and they live in America, not some far-away country. I think this is a really good lesson for us. When I was reading it, it painfully brought back the foibles of us, even (or should I say especially) here in Singapore. We really should take note and try to change it.
This is one of the few books in the recent time period that I completely praise. It's rare, since although I like/love most books, my reviews (for some reason or another) tend to focus on the -sometimes minuscule- flaws present. It's a nice change I think.
I wanted to like this book so much, but in the end I was just frustrated with the sections of awkward and disjointed writing. The parts written well come off and on.
My biggest peeve is the ending. So are you saying that Christians can date/marry non-christians as long as the non-christians are attending church? Aiden ends up "understanding Christ a little more" over two weeks of service and suddenly he's Christian? The book never explains what that means - was he converted? Did he ever actually hear the gospel? Being saved means more than "understanding a little more." I'm not being legalistic here - there are people who attend church their whole lives and are not necessarily saved.
I'm not saying one can't come to Christ over the course of two weeks or even a day. But Aiden isn't shown to be a very convincing convert - more like Lex is grasping at straws. To be honest, this book is full of characters who claim to be Christian but don't act like the gospel has any effect on their lives - Ike, Oliver, Spenser.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
I knew this was going to be a great book when the crazy grandmother showed up in chapter one. Camy Tang’s first book, Sushi For One?, is a great start to a budding career. We don’t see a whole lot of Asian chick-lit, so this book, while maintaining what we love about chick-lit, gives a taste of something new and different.
Fresh as good sashimi, this chick lit with an Asian twist was a fun, fast read with some just enough spiritual depth to keep you pondering. I haven't read the other books in Camy's series yet, but I imagine they show Camy's bubbly personality, wit and love for Jesus in the same way as Sushi for One. Recommended for anyone who loves Christian chick lit.
I read this because it was free on the Kindle. Really badly written...seems like the author is forcing 'challenges' that the characters face. Way too many 'bad things' happen to the main character and the problems are resolved really quickly and easily - this story lacks imagination.
Lex Sakai has committed a serious social gaffe; she's late for a family gathering. It's a Chinese Red Egg and Ginger party--a baby shower for those of us not up on our Chinese/Japanese culture. Truth be told, she'd rather be playing volleyball (that's what made her late in the first place), but Lexi's attendance is mandatory. Her plan is to say 'hello' to her marriage minded Grandma and then escape to the back of the restaurant, where all of her unmarried cousins have fled. The plan is simple, but the execution is anything but.
Lex breaks away from her grandmother and struggles through the jungle of chairs and tables to find her cousins and best friends, Venus, Jenn and Trish. The foursome became close as college roommates and Christians in a family dominated by a Buddhist matriarch. But this time her allies have failed her. The chair they had saved for her had to be removed to make room for a "portly aunty" at the next table. Forced to seek another chair, the only one she finds is at her cousin Bobby's table—he with the six kids all under the age of five. As she tries to make chitchat with Bobby's wife and recall the name of the infant squirming in the the frazzled mom's lap, the first missile is launched. Chicken smothered in sauce departs the fork on which it was impaled and hones in on Lex's new silk sheath. The sight sets off a younger brother. Partially chewed bok choy in garlic sauce sails through the air to join its chicken counterpart in the middle of Lex's chest.
The mess is more than Lex's stomach can take. She leaves to head for fresh air, but diminutive grandma materializes by her side. Closer inspection at the mess on Lex's dress reveals two things to Grandma, both of which she announces to the assembled throng. Lex can't catch a man because she has no chest and Grandma will remedy this most unfortunate flaw by paying for breast implants. What Grandma lacks in size is more than made up for in personality.
Jenn, Trish and Venus rush to Lex's rescue and hustle them out to the parking lot. An attempt to sidetrack Grandma off Lex's single status fails. The duo square off in the parking lot, but Grandma has a trump card. Either Lex has a boyfriend by her cousin Mariko's wedding or she'll pull the funding for Lex's junior high girls' volleyball team.
Lex has four months to accomplish the impossible. Armed with a list of must have traits lifted straight from Ephesians, she begins her hunt for the ideal mate and savior of her volleyball team. Her foray back into the dating world awakens an old nightmare, adding to the pressure. Life spikes one event after another onto Lex, threatening to break her spiritually and physically.
Camy Tang's debut novel, Sushi For One? is a funny and fun look at Asian American culture through the eyes of a single woman in a marriage minded family. The novel does deal with a serious subject, but it is handled well within the natural flow of the story. The point of view fluctuates between Lex and Aidan, the man smitten with Lex, but leery of her Christian faith. The reader is immersed in the story and the lives of these well-written characters.
Chick lit is not a genre I generally read, but Sushi For One? is an exception. Some plot points were predictable and at times Lex's difficulties seemed a bit over the top, but those were minor bumps in this novel. In fact, I'm looking forward to reading the next book in the Sushi series, Only Uni (February 2008).
Sushi For One is a witty, hysterically funny romance full of multi-cultural traditions, drool worthy food, and a sharp, three dimensional protagonist who will keep you glued to the developing story from page to page. Camy Tang really brings this original story to life with her well developed characters, crisp storytelling, and her references to the younger Asian culture growing up under the expectations of their elders.
Lex is not your typical do everything she's told young woman. She believes in what she believes in, and none of her circumstances throughout the course of the story really changes this. She's hard a traumatic incident in her past, and it's made her hesitant to trust any guy enough to start dating, and instead she throws herself into her favorite pastime, volleyball. Whether competing herself, or coaching her girl's volleyball team, Lex lives and breathes the sport, but finds herself in an unexpected dilemma when her Grandmother threatens to cut funding to the team she coaches unless she shows up with a boyfriend for her cousin's wedding.
Rather than give in to Grandma's demands, Lex begins a creative search to find a new sponsor for the team, and also chooses to leave the matchmaking up to her Heavenly Father, instead of her grandmother. She compiles a list from the book of Ephesians of the characters she's looking for in a perfect match, but she soon learns that God often takes us on unexpected detours on our journey, and life seldom works out according to our perfect plan.
I wasn't honestly sure what to expect when I picked this novel up, as I wasn't familiar with the author, but I was definitely pleasantly surprised. Lex was the kind of witty, confident protagonist I found myself wanting to root for, and I enjoyed reading about the way she was determined to keep pushing on no matter what obstacles were thrown her way. I actually liked Aidan right from the start, and the building chemistry between him and Lex was definitely one of the elements that made this story so intriguing from page to page. But in all actuality, even more so than the romance element, it was the familial connections and sense of responsibility that kept me wanting to come back for more. Growing up with certain expecations towards her elders makes Lex's situation that much more complicated, and I really enjoyed reading about the way Camy Tang made this such a prominent plot point. The reader is really treated to lots of insights and understandings of the Japanese and Chinese cultures, and the way that while Lex still aims to make her family a top priority, she also wasn't going to back down on what she truly believed in for the sake of keeping her family happy.
All in, Sushi For One is a refreshing, quirky romance with a heartwarming message, a kick butt protagonist, and enough hilarity and hi jinks to keep me entertained from start to finish. I gave it four out of five stars, and I recommend it to anyone who's looking for a humorous chick flick with a heroine you can root for, or for anyone who's looking for a mutli cultural inspirational read. I just give everyone the word of warning that you should not pick this book up while you're hungry, as the mouth watering descriptions of the yummy Asian cuisine will leave you wanting to order take out ASAP!
I won this book from a giveaway on the author's blog. Yay! I think I won it over the summer and I've finally got around to reading it. I have so many book in my to-read pile, but this one got a good boost thanks to the praise of my friend Kim, who raved about how great this series is. Kim and I are both members of a Christian reading group on Goodreads, called Christian Fiction Devourers, and she and I were discussing how Christian Fiction often is so predictable. The books always seem to be the same themes and types of characters. Most Christian readers are familiar with the Wild West and prairie themes. Poor white woman who has just experienced some mildly traumatic event, must rely on her faith to propel her through life on the vast and lonely prairie where she subsequently falls in love with a kind man (and with a little bit of money to boot!) whom she probably has, for most of the book, disliked.
Camy Tang is definitely a breath of fresh air. The first thing that drew me to this book was that the main character is Asian and not white. That is beyond unique in Christian book. Another thing that drew me towards this book is that after telling Kim how I often feel like Christian books "dumb me down" and how I feel like I'm reading a few "grade-levels" below my actual reading level, she raved about how Camy's writing does not give her that feeling at all. She was certainly correct, Camy Tang's writing is smart, sassy, witty, and really humorous. The main character, Lex, is always finding herself in embarrassing situations. The character was reminiscent to me of Janet Evanovich's popular, accident-prone character, Stephanie Plum (whom I adore). However Lex was totally her own person, not like a borrowed, Christian version of Stephanie.
Honestly, Lex wasn't always likable. I did like her, but she wasn't perfect and sweet all the time, which was a good thing. She was stubborn and frustrating and she herself was frustrated with how life was going. Her grandma, who is like Cruella Deville, is going to stop funding Lex's girl's volleyball team. The team is everything to Lex, she coaches the girls just as her mom did before her death. Grandma will pull funding if Lex doesn't find a boyfriend by the time of Lex's cousin's wedding, which is something like a mere 2 months away. Lex then goes on a man-hunt (literally) looking for someone to pose as her boyfriend, all the while various family members try to set her up with a myriad of total losers. None of which fit her "Ephesians List". On the top of the list is that her boyfriend has to be a Christian, which Lex soon finds doesn't immediately make a man desirable...
I certainly enjoyed this book and I'm looking forward to eventually getting around to reading the rest in the series. I think I already own one on my Kindle, but it's the third or fourth book. I am giving Sushi For One? 4 out of 5 stars. I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a fun read that occasionally touches on serious subjects.
Cute christian novel. But it could have been better. This book has much potential, yet it wasn't quite good enough to get four stars. Lex was a very well-written character. Sassy, outspoken, and totally not afraid of offending anybody who happens to be in her way. I liked her, though she did seem to complain a lot. I also liked Aiden, her friend that just can't help wanting to be more. The dialogue was also witty and knowledgeable. However, there were several points of this book that kept it from reaching the excellency that it could have achieved.
Firstly, the book was told almost always from Lex's point of view and only occasionally from Aiden's. I wanted to know why Aiden was an agnostic and felt that I didn't get to know him quite as well as Lex. The book could have delved into that farther and made Aiden's conversion more impactful. If he even was converted. The book wasn't all too clear on that point either. Aiden saw a realistic painting of Jesus on the cross, and it hit him to his core. However, he never really gave his life to Christ. I would have liked to have seen that. All Aiden said was that he was thinking about Christ more, not that Christ had any impact on him.
All throughout the book, Lex kept on saying that she would only marry a Christian. Define Christian. Most of the people in America say that they are "Christian" yet have no relationship with God. I believe most people believe to be Christian is to be just live a good life, go to church on occasion and so on. So Lex had somewhat of a flawed view there.
There were many volleyball terms that were not explained. Not everybody knows volleyball. I kept on wondering what the word shank means because I have never really played volleyball.
This book had deeper qualities and could have been truly more powerful if the author had dealt with them. However, Tang seemed to shy away from the deeper aspects of the book. I was somewhat disappointed in that.
I thought it was strange that the grandmother was so adamant on Lex getting a boyfriend. Even to the point of threatening to take away funding for Lex's volleyball team, getting Lex's dad's car repossessed, and kicking Richard (Lex's brother) out of his apartment. This seemed wholly unrealistic. However, it was hilarious to find out all the quirks in Lex's family, and I found myself smiling often.
All in all, Sushi For One? was entertaining. It didn't seem to drag at all. It had more of a lighthearted tone. Lex learned that she had to rely on God rather than on herself in the long run.