If you are having difficulty navigating this website please contact us at member.services@bookofthemonth.com or 1-877-236-8540.

Get your first hardcover or audiobook for just $5.

Join now.
Arsenic and Adobo by Mia P. Manansala

Arsenic and Adobo


We love supporting debut authors. Congrats, Mia P. Manansala, on your first book!

Early Release

This is an early release that's only available to our members—the rest of the world has to wait to read it.

by Mia P. Manansala

Quick take

That awkward moment when your ex-boyfriend gets poisoned in your restaurant and everyone thinks you did it.

Good to know

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Puzzle


  • Illustrated icon, Icon_LOL


  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Whodunit


  • Illustrated icon, Icons_Quest



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…

Read less

Free sample

Get an early look from the first pages of Arsenic and Adobo.

Why I love it

I adore the cozier side of mystery fiction. I seek out that sweet spot where you can be completely swept up in a book, but also know that the story won’t take too dark a turn. I want a terrific mystery with characters I enjoy spending time with and a happy ending. When there’s a multicultural cast and good food thrown into the mix, even better. So I was thrilled to get an early look at Mia P. Manansala’s debut, Arsenic and Adobo, a stand-out cozy mystery full of heart, the importance of home, and tons of good food.

To get over a horrendously bad breakup, Lila Macapagal has moved home to help her family’s struggling restaurant. Unfortunately, when her loathsome food critic ex-boyfriend drops dead while eating there, things go from bad to worse, and Lila and her family are implicated. To save herself and the restaurant, Lila takes it upon herself to discover who the true killer really is.

I wish I could transport myself to Shady Palms to hang out with heroine Lila and her amazing friends—not to mention eat the Filipino-inspired cooking. (Luckily Manansala shares recipes with readers. YUM.) If you’re in the mood for a lighthearted and laugh-out-loud mystery romp, hanging out with a fun cast of characters, and drooling over the delectable food from Tita Rosie’s Kitchen, be sure to pick up Arsenic and Adobo. I’m eagerly awaiting the next book in the series.

Read less

Member ratings (29,294)

  • Amanda S.

    Cedar Grove, WI

    This one took me a little bit to get into, but ended up loving to plot line and all the family intricacies. Loved all the food talk and that recipes were included! Loved the story, well done⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  • Alisha F.

    Hilliard, OH

    Even though this story starts off with a murder - it’s light hearted, fast paced, and such a fun read. I loved the different cultures, cuisines, and characters woven throughout the book. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  • Heather I.

    Lombard, IL

    Though I’m not typically a cozy reader, I couldn’t resist this book! Loved the characters, the setting, the story. Centered on a Chicagoland Filipino family, filled food references—what’s not to love!

  • Samantha D.

    Wales, ME

    I was sick with a stomach flu when I started this. Kind of glad because I couldn’t put it down and I would have missed it if I had to work. The ending wasn’t predictable at all! Well written and fun!

  • Katie B.

    Janesville, WI

    I couldn’t put it down! I loved that the characters were diverse and the story was easy to follow without overwhelming details, but was still a surprise until 2/3rds through! Can’t wist for the next!