Dial A for Aunties
by Sutanto, Jesse Q.

"What happens when you mix 1 (accidental) murder with 2 thousand wedding guests, and then, toss in a possible curse on 3 generations of an immigrant Chinese-Indonesian family? You get 4 meddling Asian aunties coming to the rescue! When Meddelin Chan endsup accidentally killing her blind date, her meddlesome mother calls for her even more meddlesome aunties to help get rid of the body. Unfortunately, a dead body proves to be a lot more challenging to dispose of than one might anticipate-especially when it is accidentally shipped in a cake cooler to the over-the-top billionaire wedding that Meddy, her Ma, and her aunties are working, at an island resort on the California coastline. It is the biggest job yet for their family wedding business-"Don't leave your big day to chance, leave it to the Chans!"-and nothing, not even an unsavory corpse, will get in the way of her aunties' perfect buttercream-cake flowers. But things go from inconvenient to downright torturous when Meddy's great college love-and biggest heartbreak-makes a surprise appearance amid the wedding chaos. Is it possible to escape murder charges, charm her ex back into her life, and pull off a stunning wedding, all in one weekend?"-

Jesse Q Sutanto grew up shuttling back and forth between Indonesia, Singapore, and Oxford, and considers all three places her home. She has a Masters from Oxford University, but she has yet to figure out how to say that without sounding obnoxious. Jesse has forty-two first cousins and thirty aunties and uncles, many of whom live just down the road. When she's not writing, she's gaming with her husband (mostly FPS), or making a mess in the kitchen with her two daughters.

Murder is never funny, except when it is. In Sutanto's rollicking debut, which she describes in a "Dear reader" foreword as "a love letter to my family-a ridiculously large bunch with a long history of immigration," a fatal accident begets family reconciliation, true love at second sight, and happy beginnings all around. Meddy (short for Meddelin-her "parents were aiming for Madeleine") is convinced her sprawling Indonesian, Chinese, Singaporean, and American family is cursed: all the men die or leave. She's the only Chan of her generation who has stayed in California with her mother and three aunts, even working in the family wedding business as the resident photographer. Although Meddy is not even close to 30, Ma is convinced that she's practically an old maid, never mind that Meddy chose family over romance years before. Ma is desperate enough to impersonate Meddy on a dating app, sending her off with a potential rapist. So he dies. Sort of. Dial A for Aunties, indeed, as they navigate a high-profile wedding with a corpse in tow. Sound preposterous? Perhaps, but you'll be glad you went along for the yacht ride.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Sutanto's #OwnVoices comedy has generated big buzz, and there's even a Netflix series in the works. Copyright 2021 Booklist Reviews.

Murder and mayhem crash the wedding of the year. Meddelin "Meddy" Chan thought she knew all about her mother‚??s meddlesome ways. She‚??s spent her whole life surrounded by the strong-willed women in her Chinese Indonesian family‚?"including her four aunties‚?"and she‚??s learned better than to fight what they think is best. In fact, it‚??s their influence that made Meddy break up with her secret college boyfriend, Nathan, and stay at home to join her family‚??s wedding business as a photographer. But when Meddy finds out that her mother has been posing as her on a dating app for weeks‚?"and has set her up with a guy‚?"she‚??s still shocked. Even more so when she meets Jake, a hotelier who turns out to be self-centered, rude, and the exact opposite of her type. When Jake tries to attack her and Meddy accidentally kills him, she‚??s suddenly grateful to have five women in her life who are willing to help her hide the body. Things get complicated, though, when a cooler containing the body is accidentally shipped from her aunt‚??s bakery to the wedding of billionaires Tom Cruise Sutopo and Jacqueline Wijaya‚?"and Nathan turns up as part owner of the resort where the ceremony is taking place. But this is the biggest gig her family has ever had, and they‚??re certainly not going to let a corpse get in the way. Comparisons to Crazy Rich Asians¬ are apt, as the author details the wild spending and luxurious lifestyles of the superrich. But this story is filled with mistaken identity, a gaggle of intoxicated groomsmen, five lovably hilarious sisters, and slapstick humor that leans more toward the film Clue. Readers will die for the delightfully absurd hijinks in this dark comedy. Copyright Kirkus 2021 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

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