Book Reviews

Hungry Hearts: Kings & Queens + Home-cooked Food that Feeds My Heart


Hungry Hearts: 13 Tales of Food & Love (edited by Elsie Chapman & Caroline Tung Richmond)

Hardcover, 352 pages

Release date: June 18th 2019

Publisher: Simon Pulse

Amazon | Goodreads | Barnes and Noble | Book Depository | IndieBound


Hello! I’ll be reviewing Kings and Queens by Elsie Chapman for the Hungry Hearts Blog Tour. I will also talk about my favourite home-cooked food that feeds my heart.

What’s Hungry Hearts About? 

From some of your favorite bestselling and critically acclaimed authors—including Sandhya Menon, Anna-Marie McLemore, and Rin Chupeco—comes a collection of interconnected short stories that explore the intersection of family, culture, and food in the lives of thirteen teens.

A shy teenager attempts to express how she really feels through the confections she makes at her family’s pasteleria. A tourist from Montenegro desperately seeks a magic soup dumpling that could cure his fear of death. An aspiring chef realizes that butter and soul are the key ingredients to win a cooking competition that could win him the money to save his mother’s life.

Welcome to Hungry Hearts Row, where the answers to most of life’s hard questions are kneaded, rolled, baked. Where a typical greeting is, “Have you had anything to eat?” Where magic and food and love are sometimes one and the same.

Told in interconnected short stories, Hungry Hearts explores the many meanings food can take on beyond mere nourishment. It can symbolize love and despair, family and culture, belonging and home.

My Review on Kings and Queens (by Elsie Chapman)

I didn’t expect this story to involve gangs and revenge, so that surprised me. In a good way. I loved how they were all woven together with food, an important element. It enriched the main character and their arc.

From beginning to end, I was hooked by their motives and the importance of family.  Even the minor characters who came and went caught my attention. Chapman is able to convey the significance of food and family and detail the worldbuilding that would speak to my soul in such a short time.

Kings and Queens is a short story I won’t forget.

Rating: 🍜🍜🍜🍜

the editors


Elsie Chapman grew up in Prince George, Canada, and has a degree in English literature from the University of British Columbia. She is the author of the YA novels Dualed, Divided, Along the Indigo, and Caster as well as the MG novel All the Ways Home, and co-editor of A Thousand Beginnings and Endings and Hungry Hearts. She currently lives in Tokyo, Japan, with her family.

Photo Credit: Michael Meskin

Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Instagram


Caroline Tung Richmond is an award-winning young adult author, whose historical novels include The Only Thing to Fear, The Darkest Hour, and Live In Infamy. She’s also the co-editor of the anthology Hungry Hearts, which features stories about food and will come out in June 2019 from Simon Pulse. Her work is represented by Jim McCarthy of Dystel & Goderich.

Caroline is also the Program Director of We Need Diverse Books, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that advocates for diversity in children’s publishing.

After growing up in the Washington, D.C. area Caroline now lives in Virginia with her family.

Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | Pinterest


Home-cooked food that feeds my heart

Food is an important element in Kings and Queens. Food represents or symbolises something or has meaning in Chinese culture. There’s also a recurring line about food shouldn’t only feed you, but also your heart. That struck me and inspired this section. I want to focus on the home-cooked Chinese-Indonesian food that I grew up with and have a special place in my heart.



Better than mie goreng.

Spring rolls


All I can say is that my mum makes the best spring rolls.

Kwetiau goreng

Rice noodles with veggies and meat dipped in sauce and oil. Mmmmmmmm…..



Triangular-ish rice dumplings filled with meat and wrapped in bamboo leaves.


Fried wontons with balls of meat inside – their skin so crunchy I cry every time I have them. Their shapes vary – my mum folds them in her own way.

tour schedule

June 10th – Introduction

Vicky (Welcome + Interview)

June 11th – Karuna Riazi

Naadhira (Review)

June 12th – Rin Chupeco

Bianca (Review + Creative Post) & Kate (Review + Recipe)

June 13th – Jay Coles

Nikki (Review + Creative Post)

June 14th – Elsie Chapman

Kevin (Review + Creative Post) & Natalia (Review + Creative Post)

June 15th – Sara Farizan

Em (Review)

June 16th – Caroline T. Richmond

Lili (Review + Creative Post) & Tiffany (Review + Creative Post)

June 17th – Adi Alsaid

Moon (Review + Creative Post)

June 18th – Sandhya Menon

Aimal (Review + Aesthetic/Mood board) & Nia (Review + Fave Quotes)

June 19th – S. K. Ali

Mish (Review + Creative Post)

June 20th – Phoebe North

Kayla (Review + Aesthetic/Mood board)

June 21st – Rebecca Roanhorse

Lila (Review + Aesthetic/Mood board) & AJ (Review + Aesthetic/Mood board)

June 22nd – Sangu Mandanna

Nandini (Review + Creative Post) & Prags (Review + Fave Quotes)

June 23rd – Anna-Marie McLemore

Nox (Review + Creative Post)

June 24th – Closing

CW (Review + Food Crawl)

3 thoughts on “Hungry Hearts: Kings & Queens + Home-cooked Food that Feeds My Heart”

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