Amina Ibrahim's Reviews > Natalie Tan's Book of Luck and Fortune

Natalie Tan's Book of Luck and Fortune by Roselle Lim
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it was ok

I received an ARC from netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Natalie tan left home for cooking school. After flunking the course, she started travelling, which she never had a chance to do before because of her mom's agoraphobia. She always had to stay at home to care of her mom and never went out. Natalie still resents her neighbours for never helping her through that time. When she recieves a call from a lawer informing her about the death of her mother, she goes back home, after 7 years. This is a story about Natalie, Chinatown, her dream to own a restaurant and her relationship with her neighbours and family.

One of the problem I had with this book is that I can't understand what is literal and what is not. This isn't clear, is Natalie in a magical world or not? Ssomeone says something hurtful and suddenly there are wounds on her throat? The blood is coming out and her dress is a mess. I had to read it again to understand if he really hurt her physically. The birds flew away. The stone figurines. Flew away. In a non-magical world. And again i was confused if it was literally or figuratively

At the start, I didn't like the main character, Natalie. During the first half of the book, she was blaming others and the second half, blaming herself. Someone would be sneezing and the girst thought she would have was who to blame. Also, nothing is told about her past. She left her fiance on the alter. What was the reason? Why did she did it? Wanted to dnf by 65th page but went on.
The theme of the book is the same as the show Just add magic.
Another confusion is that there is no reason given for the magic in the food. If we see "just add magic", they had magical ingredients which made the recipes magical. That was not the case here. There were normal ingredients but the end result wasn't normal. The only near enough reason was that natalie cooked from her heart, but there is an instance where she cooks from her heart but the recipes don't work. So, the magic is in the cookbook, but how did lao lao, the grandmother, got the cookbook then? Again nothing told about the past. This topic didn't make sense at all.

If logical aspects are swept aside, and you go through the first 80 pages or so, it can be an enjoyable read. That happy ending alone was worth reading the book. One thing absolutely worth mentioning is the FOOD. That description was so elaborative, i could imagine the food in front of me. And yes, I did use google images for some of those dishes.
That lovely and sweet twist at the end was the best thing in the book (after the dishes).
I couldn't care less about Daniel, the "love interest". He had no importance to the story, and book would have been complete even without him. It felt like he was there just for the sake of it. To add romantic elements to the book.
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Reading Progress

January 23, 2020 – Started Reading
January 23, 2020 – Shelved
January 23, 2020 – Finished Reading

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