Book review of The Good, the Bad, and the Aunties


Meddy Chan and her meddlesome family are back in The Good, the Bad, and the Aunties, Jesse Q. Sutanto’s delightful final entry in her bestselling Dial A for Aunties trilogy.

Meddy and her new husband, Nathan, are ending their extended honeymoon with a stop in Jakarta, Indonesia, where they’ll spend the Lunar New Year with Meddy’s extended family. Of course, Meddy’s mom and the Aunties have traveled from America to celebrate, too. The holiday kicks off with a visit from a special admirer of Second Aunt’s—who may or may not be a mafia lord. He brings gifts to woo Second Aunt and the Chans, but accidentally gives away something very valuable, meant for a rival crime boss. Meddy and the Aunties jump into action to retrieve the gift and wind up facing down criminals, kidnappings and rude teenagers in their wildest outing yet. 

You don’t need to read the first two Dial A for Aunties mysteries to follow all the hijinks in The Good, the Bad, and the Aunties, but fans of the series will recognize how much Meddy has grown, especially when it comes to asserting herself to her loving but domineering Aunties. They may frustrate Meddy with their headstrong opinions, but they will delight readers with their often unintentional funny moments. All of the humor is top notch, despite the threats of warring crime lords and kidnappings. It’s touching to see how each Auntie thrives during their return to Indonesia, and Meddy and Nathan’s relationship is another highlight. Nathan is as steady and supportive as ever, despite all the chaos. When the book ends, Meddy’s no longer looking back on all the troubles she and the Aunties have escaped; instead, she’s looking forward to her future with Nathan. 

The Good, the Bad, and the Aunties is a fun, fast-paced read and a satisfying conclusion to the popular series.

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