Hungry Hearts Food Crawl Kickoff! Interviews, #OwnVoices Reviewers, & More! (+INTL Giveaway!)

Friends! CW from The Quiet Pond & I had a mini-epiphany together on Twitter one day. We were both so excited for Hungry Hearts and wanted to share our love–and what better way than with #OwnVoices bloggers for this diverse anthology?!

We are so happy to be bringing to you the Hungry Hearts Food Crawl–like a pub crawl, but with food. (AKA a blog tour.)

At each stop, a blogger will be reviewing the short story that represents them–as well as maybe bringing you a little extra magic ✨

To kick it off, today I interviewed Elsie Chapman & Caroline Tung Richmond–the editors–to talk about Hungry Hearts and just how it came to be.

I hope you enjoy this interview and will follow along with the incredible bloggers on the tour! Onwards!

P.S. We also have a very exciting INTL giveaway running, so stay tuned till the end!

(This is me before my hair was cut, haha!)

Hi Elsie & Caroline! So excited to kick off the Hungry Hearts Food Crawl today & chat about the anthology as a whole! Before we begin, can you tell us a little bit about the concept behind Hungry Hearts and its intersection of love, culture, and food?

E: Thank you so much for having us! For my part, I was wanting something in YA that made me feel the way two adult books made me feel when I first read them: The Joy Luck Club and Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother. They’re both very different books, but each resonated deeply with me in how they dug into family, culture, and understanding. So I really wanted to do a YA project that touched on those same themes, and when Caroline and I hit on the idea of using food as the element to convey them, we knew instantly it would be the perfect hook.

C: Elsie summed it up perfectly! The seeds of Hungry Hearts began on Twitter of all places — Elsie and I were chatting about The Joy Luck Club and we talked about how we’d love to see more books that include its themes of food, family, and culture. From there, we developed a proposal and reached out to possible contributors and later on the anthology sold to Simon Pulse! So thank you, Twitter.

Anthologies are so great for short story lovers & to let people read a lot of different writing styles, and I’ve loved seeing the rise of anthologies recently. I’m sure a lot of people are wondering, but what led to the forthcoming publication of Hungry Hearts–both conceptually and publishing-wise?

E: From the beginning, we wanted to be sure to work with marginalized authors whose cultural backgrounds and perspectives often don’t get enough room in YA. Caroline and I also felt it was really important to find an editor and publisher that would connect to the themes behind Hungry Hearts as strongly as we did, and we found both in Jen Ung at Simon & Schuster. From the first stages onward, the team at Pulse that was behind Hungry Hearts has been amazing in helping bring to life this project exactly as we had dreamed of it.

C: I really have to thank Elsie for reaching out to me to see if I’d consider editing an anthology with her! I love reading anthologies and have contributed short stories to a couple of them, but I never considered editing one because it seemed like a daunting task. But I felt less scared at the idea of co-editing one with a friend, and so I’m grateful Elsie invited me on this adventure! And we got so lucky to have landed at Simon Pulse and to have worked with our editor Jen Ung, who really understood our vision and who has been an absolute dream to collaborate with.

I considered asking y’all to pick favorite stories, but thankfully I’m not that mean (heh!), so instead I’ll ask this! Which food in the anthology do you wish you got to eat more often (or try!)? I’m ready to drool while reading!

E: BAGELS. Helping edit Phoebe North’s story “Bloom” and reading about her family’s Jewish deli made me so incredibly hungry for real bagels each and every time!

C: Ohhhh, I want to try everything in the stories! I wish I could have a potluck with all of the food featured because we’d have a real feast. I’m especially interested in trying Coorg pandhi curry (from Sangu Mandanna’s story), ash-e-reshte (from Sara Farizan’s story), and conchas (from Anna-Marie McLemore’s story) because I’ve never had them before and I need to taste them!

Also–a little birdie told me that there’s going to be a map in the book?! I totally was not expecting that, but this sounds like such a perfect touch, I’m really excited to have that visual element! Was that always part of the plan for Hungry Hearts, and how does it add to the story?

E: Yes, there will be a map of Hungry Heart Row! Caroline and I had hoped for one from the very beginning, given how all the stories all take place within the same neighbourhood and how they’re all interconnected, and so we were incredibly excited when we found out it was going to happen. The map is fantastic and I also think it’s such a great finishing touch!

C: I am SO EXCITED about the map! I’m so grateful for Simon Pulse for commissioning one, and I have to give a big tip of the hat to Elsie’s daughter who mocked up a rough draft of the map to pass along to the designers!

Finally, before we go, I had to ask the classic question: what does food mean to you? For different families, cultures, regions, I think the meaning food plays in our lives differs, and I’m sure your images of food & culture shaped Hungry Hearts.

E: To me, food is communication. It’s someone’s feelings and thoughts, from the making of it to the offering of it to the eating of it. Growing up, I learned there’s so much symbolic meaning in Chinese food, from rice to oranges to the length of noodles in a dish – a lot of the time, eating and cooking nearly felt like the sharing of stories. I think there’s a universality to food that is like nothing else, so I hope many, many readers will connect to and fall in love with the stories in Hungry Hearts!

C: For me, food means connection. So many of my clearest memories revolve around food — some of those memories are poignant, some are funny, and some are slightly traumatic, like how my mom would force-feed Asian pears to me as a kid and I still distrust them to this day!

I also love how some of my happiest memories include food and the people I love, like when my little sister and I visited the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and drank way too many butterbeers or right after my son was born and I inhaled two slices of chocolate cheesecake on my hospital bed (the medical staff wouldn’t let patients in labor eat anything). I don’t even really like chocolate cheesecake, but man, those slices tasted so delicious!

That’s why I had so much fun working on Hungry Hearts. It was wonderful seeing this interplay of food and family and love and culture in thirteen very different stories. And now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to get something to eat. 🙂

Honestly, CW & I feel so thankful that so many incredible bloggers are participating in this “food crawl” & talking about the short stories that represent them!

Each of the thirteen days (excluding intro & closing) are dedicated to one of the anthology’s short story authors, so as you follow this tour, you’ll be able to read along with the short stories’ reviews & see what these bloggers have to say!

They have some really exciting things planned for you, and I sincerely hope you check them all out as the month goes by!

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)


Hungry Hearts: 13 Tales of Food & Love edited by Elsie Chapman & Caroline Tung Richmond
Hardcover, 352 pages
June 18th 2019 by Simon Pulse

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.

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

Photo Credit: Michael Meskin

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.

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

I know y’all have been waiting for this moment 😉

Whet your appetites, because you could win a copy of the Hungry Hearts anthology to enjoy all the delicious short stories!

Two lucky winners–one US & one INTL–will receive a finished copy of Hungry Hearts! There are dozens of ways to enter in the Rafflecopter, which you can access in the button below!

Good luck, and stay hungry!

No purchase necessary. For full rules, please reference the Rafflecopter. INTL is defined as anywhere Book Depository ships.

Will you be following along with the tour? How excited are you for the anthology?

17 thoughts on “Hungry Hearts Food Crawl Kickoff! Interviews, #OwnVoices Reviewers, & More! (+INTL Giveaway!)

  1. I’m definitely going to be following the tour, or at least catch up with every post towards the end of the week when I’ll have more free time. So far I’ve heard nothing but fantastic things about Hungry Hearts, and the premise of it is really so cool and unique, and ah, I just really can’t wait for it!! It was lovely to read this interview, and I’m excited for the reviews and other fun things to come.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Omg yay! I’m so glad, and ahhh I hope you enjoy all the posts & reading the anthology! (Kate made her video of her making a filipino dish, and it was so exciting ahhh!)

      Liked by 1 person

  2. AHHH! I’m so excited for this tour because I’m excited for this anthology. Books + food = YES! 🙂
    Rafflecopter name: Megan S.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I enjoy reading anthologies, especially ones like this with some of my favorite authors and ones I really want to read but haven’t yet.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. omg yeah! I love it when my favorite authors are in anthologies! I hope you get a chance to pick this up, Danielle! ❤


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