Like any good editor looking for a different story, Maggie's gives her a food writing assignment for her journey. She is to interview one of China's great chefs, Sam Liang, as he plans to launch a new venue in Beijing. Maggie hesitantly accepts and is off to deal with news that could shatter her heart-while at the same time, hunt down a delicious story for the publication.
When she arrives, she learns Sam's restaurant will not be opening and he wants nothing to do with being the subject of any story. Personally, she finds herself mapping her way through a web of people and places to get to the bottom of a surprise Matt may have left behind.
As the story grows and Maggie's plot thickens, she edges her way into Chef Sam's world and convinces him to share his journey of preparing for China's Olympic culinary competition and to forget and let go of the failed restaurant opening. And for anyone in love with international cuisine, this is where the story captivates. As Maggie sits back and watches Sam work in the kitchen, she finds herself becoming increasingly interested in the Chinese-American culinary wonder, as well as discovering a world of food that she never imagined.
Though at times a bit predictable beginning as mystery, turned exploration, leading to love and culinary adventure, The Last Chinese Chef is a quick, enjoyable read for anyone who chooses to sit down at Mones' table.
Mones is also the author of the books Lost in Translation and A Cup of Tea, and is a frequent contributor to Gourmet magazine.