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Month in review

Reviews
A.D.: New Orleans After the Deluge by Josh Neufeld
Big & Little Questions (According to Wren Jo Byrd) by Julie Bowe
Bitter Seeds by Ian Tregillis
Black Cats and Evil Eyes: A Book of Old-Fashioned Superstitions by Chloe Rhodes
Bruja Born by Zoraida Córdova
Cat Got Your Diamonds by Julie Chase
Classified as Murder by Miranda James
The Clue at Black Creek Farm by Carolyn Keene
Death by Dumpling by Vivien Chien
Espresso Shot by Cleo Coyle
Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles by Mark Russell and Mike Feehan
Farm City: The Education of an Urban Farmer by Novella Carpenter
Giant Days: Extra Credit by John Allison
The Great Shelby Holmes and the Coldest Case by Elizabeth Eulberg
The Ice Witch by Joel Ross
It All Comes Down to This by Karen English
Kraken by Wendy Williams
The Legend of Korra: Turf Wars Part One by Michael Dante DiMartino and Irene Koh
Lost and Fondue by Avery Aames
Mabel Jones and the Forbidden City by Will Mabbitt and Ross Collins
Marcus Vega Doesn't Speak Spanish by Pablo Cartaya
Midnight Without a Moon by Linda Williams Jackson
The Million by Karl Schroeder
Monoceros by Suzette Mayr
Paradox in Oz by Edward Einhorn and Eric Shanower
Pride by Ibi Zoboi
Restart by Gordon Korman
Running With Lions by Julian Winters
Still Missing by Chevy Stevens
Weather or Not by Sarah Mlynowski, Lauren Myracle, and Emily Jenkins
The Wicked Will Rise by Danielle Paige

Miscellaneous
Cybils Update (October 16)
Cybils Update (October 23)
Cybils Update (October 30)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (October 01)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (October 08)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (October 15)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (October 22)
September 2018 Sources
September 2018 Summary

Road Essays
FFCC99: Orphan Uhoria Labyrinth
FFCC33: Orphan Uhoria Blue Highway: A comparison of The Sentinel and Three-Quarters Dead
FFCC00: Orphan Uhoria Interstate: The Polar Express, Waiting for Augusta, and Winterhouse
FF99FF: Orphan wildlands cornfield
Road Narrative Update for September 2018

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5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish


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Death by Dumpling: 10/06/18

Death by Dumpling

Death by Dumpling by Vivien Chien is the start of the Noodle Shop mystery series. It's set in an Asian strip mall in Cleveland, Ohio, a refreshing change from the usual either famously large cities or fictional small towns.

Lana Lee, a Chinese-American (of Chinese mother and English father), has been working at her mother's noodle shop after quitting her stressful job. She is the one who ends up delivering the last meal to the mall's owner, Mr. Feng.

This mystery is one of location and one of shared history. The mall opened in the 1970s and has managed to keep most of its original businesses. The Lees were one of the first. As are all the suspects.

At first glance Mr. Feng's death is a tragic accident, food poisoning by extreme allergy. At second glance it looks like an act of revenge by the Noodle House's unconventional cook — a young man who loves to call everyone "Dude." But it's not that either.

I love that Chien avoids so many of the cozy tropes while setting up her world and her characters. For instance, Lana as the protagonist and one of the last people to see Mr. Feng alive could be a prime suspect, the detective in charge isn't set up as the antagonist who is going to do everything in his power to prove that she did it. There is no violent ex-boyfriend for Lana. Her parents aren't bugging her to find a husband. Lana has a good, healthy relationship with her family.

Anyway, it's a great start to a new series. The second book just came out, Dim Sum of all Fears.

Five stars

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