Natalie Tan’s Book of Luck & Fortune
Brought to you by OBS Reviewer jerjen
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 out. She’s even more surprised to learn she has inherited her grandmother’s restaurant.
The neighborhood seer reads the restaurant’s fortune in the leaves: Natalie must cook three recipes from her grandmother’s cookbook to aid her struggling neighbors before the restaurant will succeed. Unfortunately, Natalie has no desire to help them try to turn things around–she resents the local shopkeepers for leaving her alone to take care of her agoraphobic mother when she was growing up. But with the support of a surprising new friend and a budding romance, Natalie starts to realize that maybe her neighbors really have been there for her all along. (Goodreads)
Natalie returns home after the death of her mother, whom she has not spoken to in seven years. They argued about Natalie wanting to be a chef, her mother did not want her to do that. Now her mom is gone, and Natalie feels a lot of guilt and regret. And she cannot help but notice how her neighborhood is declining and businesses that were vibrant before she left are left in disarray. When she learns that her grandmother’s restaurant is still intact, she realizes that she can still make her dreams come true. She has to cook for three people before she can open the restaurant, and once she figures out who to cook for, she does just that. At first she thought her cooking had helped the neighbors, but then everything backfires. She has to learn some lessons about life and people before she can really help her neighbors and herself.
This story has a little bit of magic, a little bit of love, a little bit of friendship and a lot of recipes. You should not read this book if you are hungry because by the time you are done, you will be starving. The recipes sound so good.
The story is really about not giving up and fighting for your dreams. Even if things do not work out the first time, keep trying because you never know when things will turn out right. Natalie learns a lot about her family and her friends, and she realizes how important those things are to all of us.
I would recommend this wonderful magical book to anyone who enjoys a well crafted story. Pick up a copy and enjoy the ride.