“Vera Wong’s Unsolicited Advice for Murderers” by Jesse Q. Sutanto

This story of an elderly Chinese lady’s amateur sleuthing is an easy fun read, with some surprisingly moving moments. Vera Wong is lonely, largely ignored by her yuppie son, and her tea shop in San Francisco’s Chinatown is dusty and seldom visited. It’s also cunningly named after Vera Wang, but …

WHO THE HELL IS HARRY BLACK? by Jake Needham

A new Sam Tay novel is always an occasion to be celebrated, but regrettably I still haven’t learned the art of slowly reading and savouring these smashing books, racing through them excitedly instead. (Note to Mr. Needham – er, can you please, pretty please get cracking on Sam’s next adventure?) …

Re-reading ”Chasing The Monsoon” by Alexander Frater

There are some books that I re-read every few years, and always with undiminished pleasure. As it so happens, several of them are about India, some of them my ritual pre-monsoon, hot-weather reading. Kim. Heat and Dust. And, of course, “Chasing the Monsoon“, Alexander Frater’s marvellous travelogue about following the …

THE DIARY OF CONNIE SHAKESPEAR: THE NAGA HILLS 1900-1902

Over 120 years ago, an intrepid British woman lived in the hills of north east India, where her husband was a British officer. Connie Shakespear kept a detailed diary of her time in the Naga hills, which has just been published by Highlander Press, giving us a fascinating insight into …