> Bless Their Hearts Mom: Book review: Arsenic and Adobo by Mia P. Manansala
Monday, April 12, 2021

Book review: Arsenic and Adobo by Mia P. Manansala

 Disclosure / Disclaimer: I received this ebook free of charge, from Berkley Publishing via #netgalley, for review purposes on this blog. No compensation, monetary or in kind, has been received or implied for this post. Nor was I told how to post about it, all opinions are my own

The first book in a new culinary cozy series full of sharp humor and delectable dishes—one that might just be killer....

arsenic and adobo cover


When Lila Macapagal moves back home to recover from a horrible breakup, her life seems to be following all the typical rom-com tropes. She's tasked with saving her Tita Rosie's failing restaurant, and she has to deal with a group of matchmaking aunties who shower her with love and judgment. But when a notoriously nasty food critic (who happens to be her ex-boyfriend) drops dead moments after a confrontation with Lila, her life quickly swerves from a Nora Ephron romp to an Agatha Christie case.

With the cops treating her like she's the one and only suspect, and the shady landlord looking to finally kick the Macapagal family out and resell the storefront, Lila's left with no choice but to conduct her own investigation. Armed with the nosy auntie network, her barista best bud, and her trusted Dachshund, Longanisa, Lila takes on this tasty, twisted case and soon finds her own neck on the chopping block…


This is the first Filipino based cozy mystery I have read, and maybe the first period! It's an interesting twist, that allows for a look into a culture that many don't see. Having lived on military bases all my life, and having had friends who are Filipino, it was like visiting old friends, especially when it came to the food! Hint- do NOT read this book while hungry! LOL, but good news, recipes ARE included for some of the dishes! It made me want to break out our ol standbys that we haven't had since our local Asian store shut down (sigh!). The plot is a bit Lifetime lite, but it works thanks to a funny dog, good dialogue and a well-meaning family! It's an enjoyable romp not to be missed!

About the Author

Mia P. Manansala is a writer from Chicago who loves books, baking, and bad-ass women. She uses humor (and murder) to explore aspects of the Filipino diaspora, queerness, and her millennial love for pop culture.

She is the winner of the 2018 Hugh Holton Award, the 2018 Eleanor Taylor Bland Crime Fiction Writers of Color Award, the 2017 William F. Deeck - Malice Domestic Grant for Unpublished Writers, and the 2016 Mystery Writers of America/Helen McCloy Scholarship. She's also a 2017 Pitch Wars alum and 2018-2019 mentor.

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