To begin this project, I read Chin Yong-Yun Stays at Home by S. J. Rozan, in the January/February 2017 issue of Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine. The setting is modern-day Chinatown in New York City. Chin Yong-Yun is an eldery widow who solves mysteries while her daughter goes off to work as a detective. As the title states, she operates from her apartment for the entirety of this "case." Despite the static location, the story is lively. The characters are distictive and preciesly described, as in this instance:
"Young Lo Tau lifted his teacup to his lips, though I could tell he did not care for my tea but was drinking out of politeness. He was also using the respectful form of address in calling me "Tai-Tai." In view of all these attempts at proper behavior I decided to overlook his disrespect of his mother in his earlier statement."
Lo Tau calls his mother crazy for dragging a suitcase with her everywhere, claiming it contains her valuables. Does it? Is she risking a mugging at the hands of the local thugs? The request for assistance by Lo Tau in dealing with his mother leads to several other mysteries and problems, all of which Chin Yong-Yun is perfectly capable to handle.
This was a delightful story, fun to read, with an interesting puzzle to solve. A nice way to start the new year.