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The Feng Shui Detective (Feng Shui Detective #1)

3.64 of 5 stars 3.64  ·  rating details  ·  389 ratings  ·  67 reviews
Mr. Wong is a feng shui consultant, but his cases tend to involve a lot more than just interior decoration. You see, Wong specializes in a certain type of problem premises: crime scenes. He and his brash teenage Aussie-American ex-pat intern (think an Asian Sherlock Holmes paired up with Kelly Osbourne) travel around Singapore solving crimes while trying to decipher each o
Hardcover, 279 pages
Published January 21st 2004 by Minotaur Books (first published 2000)
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84th out of 158 books — 41 voters
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Community Reviews

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Grace Tjan
With apologies to native Singlish speakers.

Ah Lian (AL): "So, what you got with you hah?"

Ah Beng (AB): "A book."

AL: "Aiyaa, it's got kaya on it. You been reading it at the kopitiam, issit. No good- lah. Must not read books while makan. Must respect books."

AB: "Nevermind-lah."

AL: "Where got?"

AB: "At Borders."

AL: "You bought it? Usually you so kiasu. Only want to read books in the store."

AB: "No-lah. Only when I boh lui. Yesterday I got salary. So can buy buy. Besides the story is set in Singapor
As you begin this novel, it may be tempting to dismiss it - a mistake I almost made. Give it a few more pages and you'll hopefully be hooked - as I was. CF Wong is a simple man, ostensibly retired, but busy with his feng shui business which he hopes will bring in some extra income. He is saddled with a very disagreeable secretary who refuses to work (yet who's made herself irreplaceable due to a complicated filing system only she can understand) and an eager yet unwanted young intern named Joyce ...more
Apr 07, 2010 Suzanne rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Suzanne by: Cozy Mystery Apr 2010 "Around the House"
Shelves: cozy-mysteries
This book has to be one of the most novel sleuthing teams I've ever read. CF Wong is the older, Chinese, feng shui master who specializes in crime scenes. He is paired with a young, Australian girl who has been foisted upon him as an intern. The age and culture clashes add quite a bit of humor to the story, such as CF writing that he eventually figures out that "whatever" means yes and "as if" means no.

The setting, Singapore, is also somewhat unique and provides a good background of eastern and
Cerita lucu dan dialog cerdas, itulah kehebatan Vittachi. Aku secara kebetulan membeli seri 1 dari cerita detektif Feng Shui-nya ini di Gramedia Jogja, dan langsung tergila-gila. Sejak itu, aku selalu ingin mencari karyanya. Tabrakan antara Timur (Mr Wong, sang feng shui master) dan Barat (Joyce, the sidekick) selalu bikin geli. Catatan harian yang dibuat Mr Wong juga menarik dibaca, memberikan satu dosis Zen per bab cerita. Kita juga belajar sedikit tentang feng shui tanpa merasa digurui.
Dec 11, 2008 Sharakael rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Mystery lover looking for a light reading.
I really enjoyed this book :D It's actually a collection of 9 stories, each an interesting mystery ranging from murder to missing money. I was looking for something short to read, so this perfect the bill as I could read one story each night.

While each story has its own charm and character, the stories were not written as pure murder mystery; few of the stories doesn't really give you enough hints or clues so that you'd be able to solve the mystery yourself. But all the solution was ingenious, p
Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all)
A light, fast read. I was a bit disappointed at first that it is actually a collection of short stories when I was expecting a novel, but they're pleasant enough, if a bit derivative. This book is sort of Tarquin Hall's Vish Puri, with his fractured "Asian English", meets Alexander McCall Smith's Precious Ramotswe with her knowledge of human nature; plus a good sprinkling of "aphorisms" along the lines of the old Kung Fu TV series--except the student is adressed as Blade of Grass instead of Litt ...more
I don't know. It was kinda cute, a bit silly, but very confusing. The story jumped around a lot and there were a lot of names to remember. As the story unfolded, I realized that what seemed like a lot of unrelated plotlines were actually related... but even towards the end, I was having a hard time figuring out exactly HOW. Same thing goes for the characters... they were actually all more related to one another than it seemed, at first. And yet, because I had a hard time keeping them all straigh ...more
Dina P.
I love Nury Vittachi. His articles in Reader's Digest are always funny and full with Asian cultures. So very Asian. Then I saw this book at Periplus, and I thought Vittachi's book must be equally good. And I'm not dissapointed.

This book is actually a collection of short stories, with Mr. Wong, an elderly feng shui master and Joyce McQuinnie, his Australian teenager assistant, as the protagonist. Their story usually started in an feng shui reading, which lead to cases or mysteries, which they fi
Angelic Zaizai
Suka baca buku detektif ??
Detektif yang ini beda dari yang laen..
metoda penyelidikannya berdasarkan feng shui..
herannya bisaa aja sukses membongkar kasus yang didapatnya..
udah gitu kocak pula orangnya... pelitnya setengah mati...
A light read. Too light, maybe. Many wrong malay words and expressions. The redeeming factor is the start of each stories.
Dewi V
Setelah menyelesaikan buku ini, saya membaca juga edisi hard cover bahasa inggrisnya (terbitan Minotaur kalau tidak salah). Kenapa harus dua edisi? Iseng saja dan kebetulan pula dapat, apalagi saya suka sekali seri ini biarpun waktu itu baru mulai buku pertama. Tokoh tokohnya unik dan terkesan komikal tapi tetap selaras dengan alur ceritanya. Saya tidak akan panjang lebar menguraikan ceritanya, tapi ada satu poin plus lagi buat buku ini, yang baru saya sadari setelah membaca ulang edisi bahasa i ...more
c.F. Wong is a feng shui expert who companies around Asia call on to help with problems. He is assisted by Joyce Mcquinnie, a European teenager who is doing work experience in Mr Wong's office. This is a detective-in-another-country book with a difference - every chapter is a different mystery. in fact it feels a bit like those five minute mysteries I read as a kid, and sometimes the mystery is solved as implausibly.

But the mysteries and crimes are almost secondary to the cross cultural misunde
Sep 05, 2010 Mike rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone
I picked this book up because I have read the author's column, "Traveller's Tales", in the Far Eastern Economic Review many times with great pleasure. As a humorist he does not disappoint and this book is further proof of it.

It is a detective story, but it is also a good 'clash of cultures" story. The author (I believe this is the first in the series) introduces a set of unusual and interesting characters. Are they stereotypes? Not exactly, but several of them do fit the mold of specific persona
R.J. Murphy
The Singapore office of C.F. Wong & Associates are dominated by Winnie the incompetent receptionist, and Joyce the teenaged Aussie assistant, who was forced on Mr. Wong by his main client. Mr. Wong is a Feng Shui consultant who would like nothing better than to sit in his office working on the book of oriental wisdom he has been writing for the last several years but somehow life keeps interrupting him. Mr. Wong is currently trying to stop the haunting of a dentist's office, find a young wom ...more
This book was not exactly what I expected in that rather than one continuous storyline, each chapter is a small standalone mystery in and of itself. This is not a bad thing at all and in fact I found this book to be extremely enjoyable. I felt as though its events sort of occurred in episodes, like a television show, which was cool. In fact, one of the quotes under "Praise for Nury Vittachi and The Feng Shui Detective books" is from The Australian and it says, "If Hollywood wakes up..." Yes! I a ...more
Joyce, auch genannt Jo, ist als Praktikantin bei C. F. Wong untergekommen. Ihr 'Papi' hat dies arrangiert und C. F. Wong hat nur als gefälligkeit mit Hoffnung auf ein wenig mehr Honorar zugesagt.
Anfangs versucht Wong das Junge Mädchen mit Ablagearbeiten abzuspeisen, doch schnell wird klar, dass sie viel mehr will, als nur die Sachen sortieren und so nimmt er sie mit auf seine Aufträge. Dort geht es nicht nur um Fengshui, sondern auch um Mordfälle.
Dieses ungwöhnlich, eigentlich nicht zusammen pa
Bronwyn Hegarty
C.F Wong is the geomancer practising Feng Shui to solve problems for people. During his work a few corpses appear or he is asked to find out why people become ill or die as a result of bad feng shui in buildings or homes. This is an eclectic collection of stories that develop over time so need to be read in order. They are light and easy to read but deal with intense life events. I really like the interactions between C.F. Wong and Joyce his 17 year old American assistant on work experience....h ...more
Helen Tubrett
This book made me long for Singapore again...I especially liked "Some Gleanings of Oriental Wisdom." I would have liked a bit more help translating the Chinese/Cantonese expressions that Wong uses, just to colour in the lines, but I made do without. I'm looking forward to Book #2 now!
Bukunya Nury Vittachi penuh dengan ledakan. Bayangin aja, baru di awal cerita sudah muncul harimau yang berkeliaran di tengah kota. Lucu, seru, dan cerdas. Yang paling aku suka, Nury bisa membuat dialog para tokohnya seperti nyata.
Melinda Seyler
It was okay. I couldn't really relate to any of the characters- the Feng Shui "detective" his psychic friends, his Aussie assistant and his ridiculous office "manager". The Feng Shui man seemed downright thick and his assistant should figure out what she wants and do it. The manager should just be fired.
William Freeman
Started off a little slow but I ended up warming to this charming and quirky read. Recommend for crime fans and those who like something a little different
Miriam Reger
A fun read, with a different take on the mystery genre.
I particularly enjoyed the cross-cultural and cross-generational misunderstandings.
I LOVE the series. It is so funny! I can actually picture the community in Singapore speaking in Singlish and various dialect. True to have this picture in your mind you may need to have been to Singapore but regardless of those knowledge the Feng Shui Detective is a good addition for people who love travel, mystery, and humor. The Writer Himself is amazing person. Very down to earth and have a wicked sense of humor don't believe me? try to read his blog "The Curious Diary of Mr Jam" http://mrja ...more
Nancy Schober
Clever and totally charming. Well written too!
Buku pertamanya warna merah. Selamat datang di dunia Mr.Wong, sang ahli Feng Shui dan Joice yang sejatinya cuma magang di kantornya, tapi, Well, suka bikin ulah. Siapa sangka pasangan ini bisa menjadi sangat romantis dan cocok satu sama lain. Mereka kocak.

Seperti review sebelumnya, saya takkan ragu memberi bintang 5. Oh ya, saya membaca seri ini secara acak. Dimulai dari seri ke 3 yang merupakan hadiah dari Kakak sepupu saya, dan akhirnya terus ke sero 2 dan 1 yang saya temukan di Bandung...

The setting is Singapore. The protagonist (Mr. C. F. Wong) is a feng shui master who specializes in crime scenes. His sidekick is an American-Australian teenager who is as lost in the Chinese culture as Mr. Wong is in her Westernized cultures. Yet the two of them work together to solve several crimes. There are some wacky other characters who populate the book and lend themselves to the quirkiness of it all. Fun, delightful read. I hope there are more books to come as these characters are deligh ...more
Was about to give up on this book because I found it choppy and confusing, and only mildly entertaining. Then I found out that Nury Vittachi is a well respected humorist, columnist and blogger. And that this book is one of short stories, which I hadn't read far enough to realize (I'd only made it to pg 77.) So, as a result, I'll keep reading it, whenever it is convenient to pick it up again.

So far, my favorite thing is the waving cat on the cover.

I like reading mysteries with odd/unusual detectives and this mystery fits the bill. Mr. Wong is a Feng Shui master who is stuck with a teenage intern and a lazy office manager. He would rather be working on his novel but is willing to work on a case if it pays well. The clash of cultures, ages, and beliefs makes for some humorous moments. If you enjoy Alexander McCall Smith's books then you will probably enjoy this one.
I almost gave up on this book: it appeared to be a collection of unconnected short stories - never my favourite genre. I'm glad I persevered. This is a warm and gently comic mystery featuring Chinese feng shui master CF Wong, his teenage Australian intern Joyce and fellow members of the investigative advisory committee of the Singapore Union of Industrial Mystics. I'm looking forward to reading the next in the series.
Sep 28, 2007 Putu rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Every book's lovers
The 7 World's Wonder should be add into 8. Smart and intelligent ways to mix east and west. Also funny. Instead of bring a goodlooking, kind of jamesbond stereotype guy, he presented an old (both fashion and age), stingy and ordinary old fellow to be he hero. Not to mention mix of hos friends and colleague. Really ordinary people in extraordinary advanture.
Really..u should collect all the series of Fengshui Detective.
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Nury Vittachi is a journalist and author based in Hong Kong. His columns are published daily, weekly in a variety of newspapers in Asia as well as on his website. He is best known for the comedy-crime novel series The Feng Shui Detective, published in many languages around the world, but he has also written non-fiction works and novels for children. He is also noted for his role in founding the As ...more
More about Nury Vittachi...

Other Books in the Series

Feng Shui Detective (5 books)
  • Detektif Feng Shui 2: Petualangan ke Selatan
  • The Feng Shui Detective's Casebook
  • The Shanghai Union of Industrial Mystics (Feng Shui Detective, #4)
  • Mr Wong Goes West
The Shanghai Union of Industrial Mystics (Feng Shui Detective, #4) Mr Wong Goes West The Feng Shui Detective's Casebook Detektif Feng Shui 2: Petualangan ke Selatan Twilight in the Land of Nowhen

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“Tambi’s expression changed again, this time to one of a humble supplicant. ‘I am not asking much,’ he said. ‘Only a miracle. Can you do this?’
Wong looked down at the briefing papers in front of him for a moment. Then he looked Tambi in the eye. ‘Miracles we have fifteen per cent extra surcharge. Is it okay?”
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