Jesse Sutanto: Vera Wong’s Unsolicited Advice for Murderers

This charming, hilarious, sweet and beautiful book is a real breath of fresh air.  Vera Wong owns a tiny and underappreciated tea store in San Francisco.  She’s a widow, and her son is a busy professional, but that does not stop Vera from texting him instructions about sleep, food, and anything else she feels is important.  The tea shop is dusty and lonely and most days Vera just has one customer, an older man who leaves after 10 minutes to get back to his wife with Alzheimer’s.

Then one morning (very very early, as Vera likes to get up at 4:30), Vera comes downstairs – she lives above the shop – to start out on her morning walk when she discovers a dead man in the middle of her floor.  She calls the police, but as she waits she decides to make tea for them and to trace the outline of the body with a sharpie.  The police really don’t want her help and don’t seem to take the dead man too seriously.  As Vera is sure it’s murder, she decides to investigate on her own. read more