Driving home after being kicked out of college, Tucker meets and picks up the mysterious Corinne Chang at a rest stop. Infatuated, and with nothing better to do, he ends up with her in St. Louis, where he gets a job as a chef in a Chinese restaurant. Even though he's a gwai lo -a foreign devil-his cooking skills impress the Chinese patrons of the restaurant, and his wooing skills impress Corinne when she joins him there as a waitress. But when Chinese gangsters show up demanding diamonds they believe Tucker's kind-of, sort-of, don't-call-her-a-girlfriend stole, he and his friends-which luckily include a couple of FBI agents-have to figure out just who is gunning for Corinne and how to stop them. Good thing Tucker is a Mandarin-speaking martial arts master who isn't afraid to throw the first punch. With its one-of-a-kind hero, Chinese Cooking for Diamond Thieves is perfect for anyone who loves cooking, Chinese culture, bad jokes, and young love. Diamonds are forever . . . unless Chinese mobsters decide they want them back.
"Lowry's wry debut combines a caper story with foodie culture in an entertaining mix...a zestful first novel." - Publishers Weekly "Lowry's fast-paced tale is reminiscent of Kurt Russell's Big Trouble in Little China , or an off-center Philip Marlowe from a Raymond Chandler story. That is, it's a chaotic, intriguing, and fun read that delivers quite a punch." - Booklist "Lowry's engaging first novel is as accomplished as its young hero-smart, skillful, self-possessed. And who wouldn't love a hipster martial arts devotee who cooks authentic Asian cuisine? Warning: do not read this book without a good Chinese restaurant on speed-dial!" -- Hilary Fields, author of Bliss "The clever and unique mix of martial arts, Chandler-worthy banter, mouth-watering feasts, and an extremely likable protagonist made me want join chef Tucker and his coterie for Chinese food and late-night sleuthing. Absolutely delicious." -- Sarah Skilton, author of Bruised " Chinese Cooking for Diamond Thieves is a road-tripping love story spiced with snappy repartee and a dash of running-for-your-life, told by a memorable narrator who never picks up strangers at a highway rest stop -- unless they speak Mandarin. An enjoyable, witty, comic adventure that will also make you very, very hungry." -- Kristina Riggle, award-winning author of The Whole Golden World