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Riverhead Books

Land of Milk and Honey by C Pam Zhang (Hardcover)

Land of Milk and Honey by C Pam Zhang (Hardcover)

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Fiction - Literary - Dystopian


The award-winning author of How Much of These Hills is Gold returns with a rapturous and revelatory novel about a young chef whose discovery of pleasure alters her life and, indirectly, the world.

A smog has spread. Food crops are rapidly disappearing. A chef escapes her dying career in a dreary city to take a job at a decadent, mountaintop colony seemingly free of the world's troubles.

There, the sky is clear again. Rare ingredients abound. Her enigmatic employer and his visionary daughter have built a lush new life for the global elite, one that reawakens the chef to the pleasures of taste, touch, and her own body.

In this atmosphere of hidden wonders and cool, seductive violence, the chef’s boundaries undergo a thrilling erosion. Soon she is pushed to the center of a startling attempt to reshape the world far beyond the plate.

Sensuous and surprising, joyous and bitingly sharp, told in language as alluring as it is original, Land of Milk and Honey lays provocatively bare the ethics of seeking pleasure in a dying world. It is a daringly imaginative exploration of desire and deception, privilege and faith, and the roles we play to survive. Most of all, it is a love letter to food, to wild delight, and to the transformative power of a woman embracing her own appetite.


C Pam Zhang is the author of How Much of These Hills Is Gold, winner of the Academy of Arts and Letters Rosenthal Award and the Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature[CE1], long-listed for the Booker Prize, a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award and the National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Prize, and one of Barack Obama's favorite books of the year. She is a National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 honoree and a New York Public Library Cullman Fellow.

“Richly lyrical and chillingly propulsive…With sentences as decadent as the meals they describe, C Pam Zhang brilliantly exposes how, in a climate of scarcity, sensuous indulgence always comes with a side of moral complication.” —Oprah Daily

“Exquisite and seductive…Emotionally captivating and raw, this masterpiece will be enjoyed to the last bite.”—Publishers Weekly, STARRED review

“[C Pam Zhang] reminds us of what it’s like to be embodied and living on Earth with sumptuous scenes of food and sex. . .Mournful and luscious, [Land of Milk and Honey is] a gothic novel for the twilight of the Anthropocene Era.”—Kirkus, STARRED review

“A book of appetite, rich with ideas and emotion. Zhang possesses a wonderfully bold and playful imagination; this novel is further proof of her extraordinary talent.” —Katie Kitamura, bestselling author of Intimacies

“The way Zhang writes about food and desire and human failings is exquisite—sensually detailed, at times visceral. This is a tremendous novel that explores the way people will break when the world itself is broken. Land of Milk and Honey is truly exceptional.” —Roxane Gay, New York Times bestselling author of Bad Feminist

“It’s rare to read anything that feels this unique. A richly imagined, ambitious, and haunting novel that is striking for its deft juxtaposition of small, human moments with larger concerns about the world.” —Gabrielle Zevin, New York Times bestselling author of Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow


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