I don’t think there’s ever been anything quite like this. It’s a love story, it’s a mystery, and it’s also the most thorough explanation of Chinese food that I’ve ever read in the English language.
—Ruth Reichl, NPR


The perfect leisure read. Effortlessly weaves together a fast-paced romantic plot with profound precepts from ancient Chinese food culture…Delicious.
Wall Street Journal


A stunning picture of a country caught between tradition and modern life.
Entertainment Weekly


Using Chinese culinary history, language and tantalizing descriptions of fine cuisine, Mones shows how food can both nourish the body and the soul. Her extensive research takes readers into the philosophy and artistic ambitions of Chinese cuisine – and leaves them hungry for recipes.


Remarkably, Mones entrances both the serious cook and those of us belonging to the “How long do I microwave this?” school. In her care, the lovingly prepared meal is both a conscious act of culinary craft, meticulously described, and a metaphor for meaningful spiritual exploration. As a wise uncle of Sam’s reflects: “Almost anything could be recalled or explored through food.”
– Seattle Times