Wonton Terror by Vivien Chien Wonton Terror by Vivien Chien
Series: Noodle Shop Mystery #4
Published by St. Martin's Press on August 27, 2019
Source: Gift
Genres: Cozy Mystery
Pages: 294
Format: Paperback
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three-half-stars

The Asian community is kicking off summer with the return of its popular Cleveland Night Market festivities, and Lana Lee is excited to represent the Ho-Lee Noodle House booth with her favorite chef, Peter Huang. Lana is confident that the evening marks the beginning of a great season to come. Not only is she looking forward to the warm temperatures, but her birthday is only weeks away, her handsome boyfriend, Detective Adam Trudeau, is planning a romantic get-away. Life couldn't be better.

But before she can get too accustomed to the idea of a carefree summer, an explosion involving a nearby food truck, Wonton on Wheels, kills one of the proprietors and injures several others in the nearby vicinity.

When the authorities discover that this was no accident, the family members of the dead man become the number-one suspects in a front-page murder story. Lana and her best friend, Megan Riley, fall back into detective mode. But as they uncover family secrets of abuse and angry costumers, Lana's own family drama raises its head. Will Lana be able to juggle everything the universe is throwing at her, or has she jumped from the frying pan to the fire?

Lana Lee is working at the noodle shop’s stand at the Night Market when the pleasant summer evening is disrupted by an explosion of one of the food trucks. The owner of the truck is killed in the explosion. His wife suffered some minor burns, but the police are suspicious that she may have something to do with the bomb, possibly for the insurance money.

Lana and her roommate Megan decide to investigate, in part because Lana’s curious, but the wife is one of her mom’s friends and her mom is upset. It seems like most of the Asian community in Cleveland know each other and/or have mutual acquaintances, which makes gathering information easier, but trying to do it without attracting notice difficult.

I’ve been reading this series in order and enjoying it. Lana’s relationships with her family is great. They love each other, but that doesn’t mean they always get along. And Lana’s aunt is in town, adding a whole nother layer of tension to family dinners.

The mystery was good. There were several reasonable suspects and some well-placed clues. I like that the author portrays women, especially Asian women, as strong and tough and intelligent, without turning them into martial arts mavens.

About Vivien Chien

Vivien Chien

Vivien Chien first started writing simple stories about adventures with her classmates when she was in elementary school. As she grew up, her love of books and the written word increased, leading to the attempt of her first novel at age 16. After many struggled beginnings and several different genres, she found her passion in the mystery world.

When she’s not writing, she can be found frolicking in the bookstore or searching for her next bowl of noodles. She has a soft spot for doughnuts, a healthy love for coffee, and an extreme need to participate in random acts of crafting.

She currently lives in Cleveland where she writes side-by-side with her toy fox terrier.

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