Aunty Lee’s Delights by Ovidia Yu is the first book in the new “Singaporean” mystery series. Publisher: HarperCollins, September 2013
This delectable and witty mystery introduces Rosie “Aunty” Lee, feisty widow, amateur sleuth, and proprietor of Singapore’s best-loved home-cooking restaurant
After losing her husband, Rosie Lee could have become one of Singapore’s “tai tai,” an idle rich lady. Instead she is building a culinary empire from her restaurant, Aunty Lee’s Delights, where spicy Singaporean meals are graciously served to locals and tourists alike. But when a body is found in one of Singapore’s tourist havens and one of her guests fails to show at a dinner party, Aunty Lee knows that the two events are likely connected.
The murder and disappearance throws together Aunty Lee’s henpecked stepson, Mark, his social-climbing wife, Selina, a gay couple whose love is still illegal in Singapore, and an elderly Australian tourist couple whose visit may mask a deeper purpose. Investigating the murder are Police Commissioner Raja and Senior Staff Sergeant Salim, who quickly discover that Aunty Lee’s sharp nose for intrigue can sniff out clues that elude law enforcers.
Wise, witty, and charming, Aunty Lee’s Delights is a spicy mystery about love, friendship, and food in Singapore, where money flows freely and people of many religions and ethnicities coexist peacefully, but where tensions lurk just below the surface, sometimes with deadly consequences.
This fast-paced drama was both fun and entertaining and I like it. The writing was crisp and the author took the time to explain some of the foreign words in this enjoyable whodunit. The plot was good and I love the ease of flow the story took that made this an easy read. The author did a good job in keeping the suspense alive with plenty of suspects and it was fun to see the list dwindle down until only the killer was left for wont of a motive. Aunty Lee is delightfully eccentric and observant and I would not have her any other way. This was a good read and I hope there are more adventures with Aunty Lee and her friends.