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Dial A for Aunties

4.21  ·  Rating details ·  238 ratings  ·  147 reviews
A hilariously quirky novel that is equal parts murder mystery, rom-com, and a celebration of mothers and daughters as well as a deep dive into Chinese-Indonesian culture, by debut author Jesse Q. Sutanto.

1 (accidental) murder
2 thousand wedding guests
3 (maybe) cursed generations
4 meddling Asian aunties to the rescue!

When Meddelin Chan ends up accidentally killing her blind
Hardcover, 320 pages
Expected publication: April 27th 2021 by Berkley
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Average rating 4.21  · 
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 ·  238 ratings  ·  147 reviews

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Nov 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Genuinely funny and completely charming in every way. I loved, loved, loved this one.
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
I haven’t had this much fun with a dead body since . . . .

But I’m getting a little ahead of myself here. In all honesty, I didn’t even wait to see the cover of this one before I was attempting to score an early copy – and I sure as heck hadn’t yet read a synopsis. Nope, I saw “Auntie” and my brain immediately went to the best thing to air on Bravo since the first table-flipping season of my Househoes where everyone knows everyone and constantly sticks their noses in their children’s lives .
Jesse Sutanto's comedy thriller is an absolute hoot, but you are going to have to suspend your sense of disbelief to fully appreciate and enjoy this offbeat fun fest. It celebrates the Chinese and Indonesian heritage, traditions, rituals and culture of 26 year old Meddelin 'Meddy' Chan, caught between being the good girl and daughter to her Ma, and her 4 Aunties, with their competitive rivalries and grudges, who have brought her up and poured their unconditional love and support into her, and be ...more
Apr 01, 2021 marked it as to-read
Recommended to FireLily by: Isabelle✨
I'm sad to say this, but I'm pretty sure this is the first book I've ever seen that has representation for my parents' home country and our culture.
2020 Winter Bingo (#SnowInLoveBingo❄️): Messy Characters

So, I really enjoyed this but a major caveat is necessary: this book is not rooted in reality. It's absurd. It's self-aware enough to know it's absurd. If you think the premise is bananas, I promise you that it goes off the rails a dozen more times after the setup. I loved it, but you'll be miserable if you poke holes by asking logical questions like, "Wouldn't the hotel exterior cameras solve [redacted problem]?" Lean into the absurdit
May 02, 2020 marked it as to-read-so-bad-it-hurts
'Follows a young wedding photographer who, along with her mother and aunts, tries to hide the body of her blind date while working the wedding day of a wealthy client.'


'K-drama meets telenovela with a side of rom-com'

Jan 28, 2021 rated it it was amazing
What a ride. Dial A for Aunties has redefined what "page-turner" means to me. Without even realizing it, I was 84% in, gripping my stomach from laughing too hard and extremely eager to reach the conclusion.

If you're looking for a serious, character-focused crime novel with heavy themes and a realistic storyline, this is definitely not that book. Please carry on with your life.

*But* if you're in the mood for laugh-out-loud humor, unprecedented mayhem (involving meddlesome family members and over-
Lily Herman
Feb 23, 2021 rated it liked it
The absolutely most important thing you need to know to get the most out of Jesse Q. Sutanto's Dial A for Aunties: You have to suspend all (and I really do mean ALL) disbelief! It's a satirical tale that prides itself on soapy levels of drama that escalate in the most extra ways possible. And that's the point! Enjoy the ride!

One of the funny parts of reading ARCs, especially for debut or sophomore novels, is that you never quite know what you're going to get. It took me probably 30-40 pages to t
Thank you, thank you, thank you, Berkley Books!!

ARC received!!!

This sounds like pure fun brought to the page. Even the synopsis makes me smile!
Namera [The Literary Invertebrate]

This one's a bit of a wild ride.

26-year-old Meddelyn Chan works as a photographer for her family's wedding business, run by her mother and three aunts - all of whom have been left by their husbands. Though this has persuaded her that there's a Chan Family Curse and she should never fall in love, her mum thinks it's time for her to get married. To that end, she poses as Meddy on an online dating site and gets her a date with Jake, local hotelier.

Things soon go seriously wrong, though. When J
Samantha Verant
Feb 22, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I. Could. Not. Put this book down. It's so off-the-wall, so quirky, and so much fun! In addition to all the hijinks and hilariousness with Meddy, Ma, and the Aunties, there's a strong sense of familial love...and a crazy-sweet romance. (no spoilers!) Get ready to laugh your head off! I can't wait for this book to release into the world! ...more
Laurie Flynn
Nov 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is possibly the fastest five star rating I've ever given! I just finished DIAL A FOR AUNTIES and am in total awe of how hilarious and expertly plotted it is. I laughed out loud so many times and the aunties, with their humor and warmth, popped off the pages. With sharp, witty banter (and bickering!), family drama for days, and so many clever (and surprising!) reveals, I couldn't turn the pages fast enough. So often as I read, I wondered... "HOW will Meddy get out of this one?!" only to have ...more
This is a true delight, and I chortled through the whole thing!

Well, I chortled through most of it while also reading from behind my hands over my eyes - because while hilarious, shenanigans comedy-of-errors plots STRESS ME OUT!!! But it’s worth it to get to know Meddy and Big Aunt, Second Aunt, Ma, and Fourth Aunt.

This is a book about accidents, but also about self-confidence, being true to yourself and telling the truth to your loved ones, the tension between what we owe ourselves and those t
Amy Lea
Nov 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
❣️Dial A for Aunties by Jesse Sutanto, for release April 27th❣️

I was lucky enough to get an ARC of this lovely book from my fellow Berkley author friend Jesse! When I woke up to it in my kindle, I did a happy dance. And let me tell you, it did not let me down! PSA to everyone and their grandma: this book is FABULOUS. You need it in your life!!

It surrounds Meddy, a late twenties wedding photographer and her meddlesome family. When Meddy’s date goes horribly wrong (resulting in the accidental deat
Shireen Hakim
Nov 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
Crazy Rich Asians meets Vanessa Yu's Magical Paris Tea Shop. Guaranteed to make you LOL! :D ...more
Jan 11, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Jesse Q. Sutanto pulls off one madcap romcom caper of a darkly humorous debut with Dial A for Aunties.

Meddy's meddling Indo-Chinese mom reaches new heights when she creates a profile using Meddy's name and photo on a dating site then chats up a guy who seems nice (as Meddy) and agrees to meet him. Meddy is always the dutiful daughter, even when it means giving up her own dreams to do what benefits her family, so she agrees to go on the date. Except it doesn't go quite as planned and Meddy accide

This book is between a 3 and 3.5 for me! It started off fantastic. I was instantly drawn to the main character, Meddy, and her meddling aunties. The flashbacks to Meddy's relationship with Nathan piqued my curiosity and had me eagerly anticipating their present-day scenes. However, as I kept reading, the plot became a little too over-the-top for me. I know a lot of readers who will love this type of writing, but it wasn't quite my style. The story moved at a quick pace, but ther
K.A. Davis
Feb 25, 2021 rated it it was amazing
DIAL A FOR AUNTIES, by Jesse Q. Sutanto, has all the right ingredients for a madcap, over-the-top, entertaining extravaganza! This book is appealing to those who can suspend their sense of reality, and lose themselves in a fast-paced story that is part murder mystery, part rom-com, and full of Chinese-Indonesian family dynamics. The quirky central characters (especially the meddlesome aunties) are endearing and I enjoyed a peek into the extravagant weddings favored by the culture, (à la Crazy Ri ...more

Jan 17, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: contemporary
This is really cute, I didn’t expect to laugh so much probably because Meddie’s family reminds me of mine! Meddling Chan lives with her mom, she’s decided to stay home and have chosen a college nearby. A decision that is cherished by all the aunties and her mom. There’s a curse in her family that for three generations all the men, husbands and sons, have left the family leaving the wives to take care of the family and household. Meddie’s aunties are a riot to be with and they are around all the ...more
Nov 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Such a funny romp, expertly plotted and so witty. There are so many twists and turns where I went, "WAIT... WHAT!?" Once I started, I just couldn't stop reading about Meddy, her aunties, and the lavish and catastrophic wedding they all attended. Jesse Q. Sutanto has a gift for witty banter and creating a pacy read as well as making you deeply care for all the characters in her story. By the end of the book I was desperate to meet the aunties, left with a deep craving for dim sum and the convicti ...more
Kartika L
Nov 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
When I first heard that a book about Chinese-Indonesian characters written by a Chinese-Indo author is coming to Netflix, I was so nervous. We have next to no representation at all, and so it meant so much to me that the author get it right. I have to admit, I actually messaged her for an eARC and she nicely obliged, along with a reminder that no book can possibly represent the entirety of the Chinese-Indo community.

Well, I am ELATED, JOYFUL, and RELIEVED to say that while there are of course d
Mar 05, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
(Disclaimer: I received this book from Netgalley. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)

I loved how strong the family and the culture was in Dial A for Aunties. In my copy there's a letter from Sutanto about trilingualism being a product of their quest for safety and dreams. How it results in broken pieces of language and moments in life, not stereotypes on a TV show. I loved how Dial A for Aunties was an entertaining page turner focused on Meddys' inner struggle betwee
Jan 26, 2021 rated it it was amazing
This book is hilarious! Part rom-com, part mystery, part family shenanigans - it's impossible to classify other than laugh-out-loud funny. As long as you don't expect realism and are willing to go along for the ride, it's an incredibly fun read. I finished it in a day and wanted to spend more time with Meddy and her aunties. ...more
Nov 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
After I finished Sutanto's YA novel, The Obsession, I immediately went and requested Dial A for Aunties, and OMG, I am so glad that I did!

First of all, as an Asian-American, I am always on the lookout for Asian representation, and the rep in here was done SO, so well. I actually cried at some points because I felt so SEEN, even though I'm Taiwanese-American and not Chinese-Indonesian like the characters in the book are. The dim sum scenes? They felt like a snapshot of my own dim sum meals with
Karen Reed
Feb 13, 2021 rated it liked it
3.5 This book is ridiculously fun! It is over-the-top but in the best way. How often can you find a truly amusing book? I get asked all the time and now I finally can recommend one. Yes, it is unrealistic and all that but you can't help but just crack up. Think Weekend at Bernie's meets Crazy Rich Asians. I loved all of the characters but the Auntie are the best! ...more
Danielle (Life of a Literary Nerd)
If you are looking for a book to bring you immense amounts of joy and an abundance of laughs from over-the-top hijinks and family drama look no further. The amounts of times I laughed out loud or gasped in shock over some plot twist or reveal was insane, Dial A for Aunties is a fast-paced story that will keep you on your toes.

Near the beginning of the story, we get a split timeline which both really propelled the story and gave background to Meddy's relationship with her family and her struggle
Katie Katieneedsabiggerbookshelf
Meddelin was not expecting to accidentally kill her blind date. When she does however, she knows she will need her families help to make it go away. Enter Ma, Big Auntie, Second Auntie, and Fourth Auntie. They are here to save the day and help Meddie get rid of the body. With the biggest wedding of the year the next day however, and all of them set to work it, they may have signed up for a bit more than they could handle.

4.5 Stars! Oh my Freaking God. THIS BOOK! It was like Crazy Rich Asians mix
Feb 20, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
'Dial A For Aunties' follows Meddy who ends up accidentally killing someone after an awful first date with him. She then involves the help of her aunties and her mother to help her cover up her crime, but with the biggest wedding her family has ever taken on happening the next day, Meddy and her aunties end up in a lot of trouble.

As soon as I heard about this book, I knew I had to read it and it was everything I wanted and more. 'Dial A For Aunties' was just such an amazing book and I loved ever
Asha Samuel
Jan 23, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2021-reads
4.5 stars rounded up, this book was so fun! It requires some suspension of disbelief but if you can do that, you're in for a wild ride. I loved the family dynamics between Meddy and her mother and aunts. I found myself laughing out loud at their antics and their attempt to get through the wedding weekend without being convicted for murder. The twists were outlandish but at the sweet spot that made the story fast paced and exciting. My only real critique is that I didn't think we really needed th ...more
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Jesse Q Sutanto grew up shuttling back and forth between Jakarta and Singapore and sees both cities as her homes. She has a Masters degree from Oxford University, though she has yet to figure out a way of saying that without sounding obnoxious. She is currently living back in Jakarta on the same street as her parents and about seven hundred meddlesome aunties. When she's not tearing out her hair o ...more

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