Arsenic and Adobo by Mia P. Manansala is the first novel in this series and author’s debut novel. ARSENIC AND ADOBO follows Lila, a young girl who has moved back home to help her failing restaurant. Her life seems to be preparing for prime romantic comedy material with a get back, matchmaking guardians, and reconnecting with her ex.

Arsenic and Adobo: By Mia P. Manansala | Food, friendship, and murder
Arsenic and Adobo: By Mia P. Manansala | Food, friendship, and murder

Unfortunately it makes a major turn off the tropes when her ex ends up being a jerk of a food critic ends up dying right before her. Out of nowhere she and her family are suspects in the killing and the restaurant is closed down. Lila is trying to find the answer so she can prove herself and her family innocent and get her family’s restaurant back to business.

I had some mixed feelings about this novel and in the end it was probably not a great fit for me. The story in this one is written from Lila’s POV and it is easy-going and conversational in nature, brimming with slang. Lila is in her mid 20s and the portrayal is therefore appropriately young in nature and that isn’t actually the way of reading that I search for in a book. Lila was likewise reckless, inclined to settle on snap decisions and awful choices that could be frustrating now and again.

I do adore a decent food based book and this book unquestionably satisfied my hopes on this front. This isn’t a novel that you should read hungry! There are some extraordinary sounding recipes at the back of the novel also! The social portrayal in the novel was likewise phenomenal to read. There was a closeness in the community that was presented and every one of the characters felt real. That unquestionably added to the general story that was being crafted. One relationship that I needed more from was between Lila and her closest friend. There were two or three twists I didn’t anticipate which was great!

If you enjoy a casual narrative style and love a good food based mystery. Keep Arsenic and Adobo by Mia P. Manansala on your radar!

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