The Fortune Cookie Chronicles

  • #26 on the New York Times Best Seller List
    and featured on The Colbert Report, Martha Stewart,, CNN, The Today Show, Good Morning America, Charlie Rose Tomorrow, Newsweek, Entertainment Weekly, and NPR stations coast to coast. Also selected for Borders Original Voices and Book Sense. Follow me on Twitter! Fan me on Facebook.

  • Reader Feedback

    From a UCLA Asian American studies professor

    Friday, April 1st, 2011

    I got a lovely note from an Asian American studies professor at UCLA. It’s exciting to think of the book as a “staple.” I am writing to say how much my students and I enjoy your wonderful book.  It has become a staple reading in a seminar I teach on Asian American history through foodways. […]

    A photo collage from a reader, Kenneth Cronk

    Thursday, December 23rd, 2010

    The above image was submitted from a reader, Kenneth Cronk. I did a photo-collage of one of my favorite Chinese Restaurants called Mee Mah. I mentioned this place in a previous email and you said you had never been there. BUT – Isn’t that you I see sitting there? Sitting in front of those two […]

    Reader Feedback from The Netherlands

    Wednesday, November 25th, 2009

    Just finished reading your book. What a lovely, well-written, well-researched joy! Thank you! I received this fun email today from an American living in the Netherlands. Who knew the book had traveled so far? It’s one of the fun aspects of being an author, little pieces of you goes all over. I actually do remember […]

    Sometimes You Just Need a Picture of a Dog

    Wednesday, September 2nd, 2009

    This picture was sent to me by Roy Zuckerman. It is Lola from Basel, and she is apparently a big fan of my book.

    The Rubber Bands Are Heading in the Right Direction.

    Sunday, May 24th, 2009

    This is a fortune that was sent to me by a reader: I’m sending you a picture of a fortune I got out of a cookie about five or so years ago. It’s the strangest fortune I’ve ever received and I thought you might like to see it. I’ve kept it pinned on my bulletin […]

    A Fortune Cookie Chronicles-Inspired Halloween Costume: Takeout Box

    Thursday, November 13th, 2008

    Jed Lam send me this photo of his Halloween costume, which was inspired by The Fortune Cookie Chronicles. Originally he wanted to go as a fortune cookie but that proved too difficult to make. But he happened to have a takeout box in the fridge. And using that as a model, he just cut up […]

    Fortune Cookie Chronicles, a catalyst for love?

    Saturday, April 12th, 2008

    This is the most adorable fan mail a writer could have hoped to get. My girlfriend and I love you. You were actually part of the reason we ended up a couple and The Fortune Cookie Chronicles was one of the first gifts we bought each other. He promised to tell me the story another […]

    Washpost: Where Lee really shines, though, is in describing the people who have cooked, served and delivered America’s favorite cuisine

    Wednesday, April 9th, 2008

    Christine Y. Chen writes a lovely review in The Washington Post (so she too is not excited about the round-the-world chapter). So now The Fortune Cookie Chronicles have been reviewed by all the major papers (+ the AP!) except The Wall Street Journal…which I doubt would review it anyway (and we haven’t heard any rumblings […]

    My first reported airplane sighting…

    Monday, April 7th, 2008

    An email from a friend, Dan Rosenheck. I’ve had subway/BART/commuter transit sightings before, but this is new. Yay. I’m sitting down at JFK next to this girl who’s flying down to Buenos Aires…and she’s ripping open a copy of The Fortune Cookie Chronicles! She said she got it because she’s a fan of your work […]

    A childhood of Chinese moms and dessert struggles

    Sunday, February 24th, 2008

    In my Food and Wine piece, I talk about how desserts totally mystified my family growing up — specifically these “bake sales.” Then I got a note from Patricia Ryan telling a sweet but sad story of her mother struggling with making desserts in her childhood.