In the Lees' wide-ranging and urbanely written survey, the eastern provinces of China contribute a generous variety of Shanghai and Fukienese dishes not easy to find in cookbooks (fish-head casserole, fried Fukienese fish rolls). The lamb dishes and wheat-flour noodles of the north are imaginatively represented, and Szechwan-Hunan fans will find a cauterizing selection of the famous hot western recipes (along with some pleasant concessions to weak sisters). The longest section is that on southern (Cantonese) cooking, which yields surprises like duck with coriander, deep-fried rolls of diced chicken wrapped in caul fat, bitter melon stuffed with a chopped pork, fish, and vegetable mixture. The Lees' notes on preparation procedures, unfamiliar ingredients, and compromise-vs.-authenticity are the most genuinely helpful we've seen. Oddly enough Florence Lin's Chinese Regional Cookbook (1975) is the most recent rival--somewhat more expensive and less inclusive--to this irresistible compendium. Mme. Lin, a well-known cooking instructor, now turns to a particularly timely (and representative) aspect of the Chinese cuisines. This meatless collection runs a remarkable gamut from stir-fried vegetable combinations to a plethora of bean curd recipes, inventive soups, rice and noodle preparations, stuffed buns and dumplings, and vegetarian simulations of familiar meat dishes. Some of the textures will be particularly foreign to American tastes, and hard-to-obtain ingredients figure even more prominently than in most Chinese cookbooks. Not for beaten-track devotees, but highly worthwhile.