Title: Dial A for Aunties
Author: Jesse Q. Sutanto
Published: 27 April 2021
I do not remember the last time I had so much fun reading a book! I was in hysterics the whole time. When Meddelin “Meddy” Chan ends up 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 the body is accidentally shipped in a cake cooler to the over-the-top billionaire wedding Meddy, her Ma, and aunties are working at an island resort on the California coastline. It’s the biggest job yet for the family wedding business and nothing, not even an unsavory corpse, will get in the way of her auntie’s perfect buttercream flowers. But, in a “comedy of errors” reminiscent of Shakespeare, things keep going downhill. It doesn’t help that Nathan, Meddy’s great college love and biggest heartbreak, is in charge of the resort. Meddy will need all her aunties and ma’s help to escape murder charges, charm her ex back into her life, and pull of a stunning wedding in one weekend.
When I say that this book was hilarious, I seriously mean it. The scenes between Meddy, her ma, and her 3 aunties are hilarious. The typical arguing and meddlesome matriarchs in Chinese families is definitely present among these four women. Of course, Sutanto is from a Chinese-Indonesian family, so she is able to do an amazing job of being faithful but not stereotypical. At least to my white self, the characters didn’t feel like stereotypes.
One of the things I absolutely love, is that when Meddy tells them how she accidentally murdered someone, they never judge her or blame her. The man was a blind date, set up by Meddy’s ma, and was trying to have sex with her, which she didn’t want. When Meddy kept saying no and moving his hand, he wasn’t taking those as answers, so she used her taser on him. The aunties actually have a discussion about tasers, which I love!! It’s also great that they all come together to help Meddy.
The romance between Meddy and Nathan felt so adorable and pure! I do really want them together, especially knowing how it ended (Meddy, I get it but stop sabotaging yourself). Yet, I wish there was a bit more tension or communication about what happened in their relationship. I mean there was a minor, quick conversation about 3/4 of the way through the book. But as soon as he sees Meddy, he’s so happy and has no problems with seeing her. It just felt a little bit unbelievable, and it made Nathan seem too perfect.
I absolutely love how the whole wedding finds out about the dead body, and eventually, how Meddy, her ma, aunties, the bride, and the maid of honor get the sheriff of the island to believe their story. It’s so great. My last final thought is this Tom Cruise (the original) and Tom Cruise Sutopo are assholes and not welcome in within a couple hundred miles of me.
Happy Reading Darlings!