In Episode 88, Jesse Q. Sutanto (author of Dial A for Aunties) shares her family background, how she integrated it into her novel, and her family’s reaction to the book.
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- Jesse’s inspiration for Dial A for Aunties.
- How Jesse managed to keep such an over-the-top plot out of eye-roll territory.
- What a typical Indonesian-Chinese wedding is like (and some things Jesse did at her own wedding).
- Why she included a letter to the reader explaining her personal background at the beginning of the book.
- Her family’s reaction to the book (given it’s partially inspired by them).
- If any of the real people characters in the book are based on have realized they’re “in the book.”
- How Jesse has 4 new books coming out next year (including a sequel to Dial A for Aunties).
- If Gillian Flynn has retired from writing books and how she feels about the term “domestic thriller.”
Jesse’s Book Recommendations [24:12]
Two OLD Books She Loves
- Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn | Buy from Amazon | Buy from Bookshop.org [25:14]
- And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini | Buy from Amazon | Buy from Bookshop.org [29:58]
Two NEW Books She Loves
- The Girls are All So Nice Here by Laurie Elizabeth Flynn | Buy from Amazon | Buy from Bookshop.org [33:26]
- The Other Black Girlby Zakiya Dalila Harris | Buy from Amazon | Buy from Bookshop.org [35:57]
One Book She DIDN’T LOVE
One NEW RELEASE She’s Excited About
- My Sweet Girl by Amanda Jayatissa (September 14, 2021) | Buy from Amazon | Buy from Bookshop.org [41:26]
Last 5 Star Book(s) Jesse Read [44:35]
Other Books Mentioned
- Dial A for Aunties by Jesse Q. Sutanto [2:02]
- The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini [30:06]
- A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini [30:42]
- Take it Back by Kia Abdullah [43:48]
Jesse grew up going back and forth between Jakarta and Singapore and consider both places my homes. She was fortunate enough to do my Masters in Creative Writing at the University of Oxford, which is surely one of the most gorgeous places in the world.
She’s passionate about women’s rights and diversity in publishing. She regularly does giveaways where she critiques queries or the first few pages, and she’s especially interested in helping writers from marginalized communities.
In 2 weeks, Elizabeth Barnhill, book buyer for Fabled Bookshop in Waco, TX is joining me (airing July 21).
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