The eighth Dr. Siri Paiboun mystery
Dr. Siri never really wanted to be Laos’s national coroner. And now that he is in his mid-70s, he longs to spend some time with his wife before the untimely death that is sure to befall him, according to the local transvestite fortune-teller. But retirement will have to wait (again) until he has completed one last job for the Lao government: supervising an excavation for the remains of a US fighter pilot who went down in the remote northern Lao jungle ten years earlier. And the stakes are high. The presence of American soldiers in Laos is controversial, and the search party includes high-level politicians and scientists. So when a member of the party is found dead, Dr. Siri suspects it may not have been an accident. Can Dr. Siri get to the bottom of the MIA pilot’s mysterious story before the body count rises and the fortune-teller’s prediction comes true?
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Laos, 1979: Dr. Siri Paiboun, the twice retired ex-National Coroner of Laos, receives an unmarked package in the mail. Inside is a handwoven pha sin, a colorful traditional skirt worn in northern Laos. A lovely present, but who sent it to him, and why? And, more importantly, why is there a severed human finger stitched into the sin’s lining?
Siri is convinced someone is trying to send him a message and won’t let the matter rest until he’s figured it out. He finagles a trip up north to the province where the sin was made, not realizing he is embarking on a deadly scavenger hunt. Meanwhile, the northern Lao border is about to erupt into violence--and Dr. Siri and his entourage are walking right into the heart of the conflict.
The long-awaited follow-up to 2011's Slash & Burn.
In a small Lao village, a very strange thing has happened. A woman was shot and killed in her bed during a burglary; she was given a funeral and everyone in the village saw her body burned. Then, three days later, she was back in her house as if she'd never been dead at all. But now she's clairvoyant, and can speak to the dead. That's why the long-dead brother of a Lao general has enlisted her to help his brother uncover his remains, which have been lost at the bottom of a river for many years.
Lao national coroner Dr. Siri Paiboun and his wife, Madame Daeng, are sent along to supervise the excavation. It could be a kind of relaxing vacation for them, maybe, except Siri is obsessed with the pretty undead medium's special abilities, and Madame Daeng might be a little jealous. She doesn't trust the woman for some reason─is her hunch right? What is the group really digging for at the bottom of this remote river on the Thai border? What war secrets are being covered up?
A fiendishly clever mystery in which Dr. Siri and his friends investigate three interlocking murders--and the ungodly motives behind them
Laos, 1979: Retired coroner Siri Paiboun and his wife, Madame Daeng, have never been able to turn away a misfit. As a result, they share their small Vientiane house with an assortment of homeless people, mendicants, and oddballs. One of these oddballs is Noo, a Buddhist monk, who rides out on his bicycle one day and never comes back, leaving only a cryptic note in the refrigerator: a plea to help a fellow monk escape across the Mekhong River to Thailand.
Naturally, Siri can’t turn down the adventure, and soon he and his friends find themselves running afoul of Lao secret service officers and famous spiritualists. Buddhism is a powerful influence on both morals and politics in Southeast Asia. In order to exonerate an innocent man, they will have to figure out who is cloaking terrible misdeeds in religiosity.
The boycotting of the 1980 Olympic games in Moscow has given the Democratic People’s Republic of Laos the chance they needed to field their first-ever team. It’s also just the sort of opportunity the now retired, and therefore very bored, ex-National Coroner of Laos, the venerable Dr. Siri Paiboun, to visit a city he has long wanted to see. He just needs to get the band back together first.
1980: The People’s Democratic Republic of Laos is proud to be competing in its first-ever Olympics. Of course, half the world is boycotting the Moscow Summer Olympic Games to protest the Soviet Union’s recent invasion of Afghanistan, but that has made room for athletes from countries that are usually too small or underfunded to be competitive--like Laos.
Ex-national coroner of Laos Dr. Siri Paiboun may be retired, but he and his wife, Madame Daeng, would do just about anything to have a chance to visit Moscow, so Siri finagles them a trip by getting them hired as medical advisers to the Olympians. Most of the athletes are young and innocent village people who have never worn running shoes, much less imagined anything as marvelous as the Moscow Olympic Village. As the competition heats up, however, Siri begins to suspect that one of the athletes is not who he says he is. Fearing a conspiracy, Siri and his friends investigate, liaising in secret with Inspector Phosy back home in Laos to see if the man might be an assassin. Siri’s progress is derailed when a Lao Olympian is accused of murder. Now in the midst of a murky international incident, Dr. Siri must navigate not one but two paranoid government machines to make sure justice is done.
Laos, 1978: Dr. Siri Paiboun, a 72-year-old medical doctor, has unwillingly been appointed the national coroner of the new socialist Laos. His lab is underfunded, his boss is incompetent, and his support staff is quirky, to say the least. But Siri’s sense of humor gets him through his often frustrating days. When the body of the wife of a prominent politician comes through his morgue, Siri has reason to suspect the woman has been murdered. To get to the truth, Siri and his team face government secrets, spying neighbors, victim hauntings, Hmong shamans, botched romances, and other deadly dangers. Somehow, Siri must figure out a way to balance the will of the party and the will of the dead.
Qui sont ces mystérieux squelettes retrouvés dans un combi van Volkswagen ?
: Jimm Juree est journaliste spécialisée en criminologie pour le quinzomadaire Mail Chiang Mai au Nord de la Thaïlande. Quand elle se voit forcée de suivre sa famille un brin excentrique (une mère un peu folle, un petit frère obsédé par le bodybuilding...) pour s'installer dans un petit village de pêcheur dans le Golfe du Siam au sud de la Thaïlande, elle est convaincue que sa carrière est terminée. Comment pourrait-elle trouver des crimes dans ce " no man's land " thaïlandais ? A peine en est-elle persuadée que deux squelettes de hippies sont découverts durant le creusement d'un puits dans le champ d'un fermier local, assis côte à côte dans un combi van Volkswagen. A l'étonnement général, l'un d'entre eux arbore fièrement un chapeau. Quelques semaines plus tard, un moine est assassiné dans un village proche. A la recherche de la vérité, Jimm met au jour des connexions bizarres entre ces meurtres. La vie de Jimm devient subitement très excitante mais surtout beaucoup plus dangereuse. Elle aura besoin de l'aide de toute sa famille pour résoudre ces meurtres...Un polar à la voie narrative extravagante et au ton humoristique et sombre à la fois.
Par-delà le sourire thaï et le waï plein de grâce, s'étend un paysage ravagé par la violence, un monde où le fait de perdre la face et le jeu des rivalités entraînent presque toujours une issue fatale, où aucun présage n'annonce le danger qui, la plupart du temps, est invisible, voire inimaginable. Survolez au grand jour la surface de Bangkok, et le monde du noir vous semblera à des années-lumière. Cette surface est raffinée, agréable et amusante. Mais creusez plus profondément, et le paradis tropical cédera la place à un purgatoire froid et enténébré, peuplé d'âmes en peine - des âmes échouées, cabossées et ostracisées. Les durs à cuire, les flics honnêtes comme les véreux, les ratés, les tourmentés, les petites gens comme les plus puissants, les transsexuels et les épouses secondaires, les expatriés et les créatures de l'au-delà, tous trouvent leur place dans Bangkok Noir. Mais le coeur de ce recueil, ce sont les doutes existentiels qui rongent les personnages.
What do you do when you find a severed head on the beach? With her former cop grandfather as back up, crime reporter Jimm Juree sets out to discover how the poor fellow got there. On their journey they uncover gruesome tales of piracy, slavery, violence and murder, yet the authorities show no interest at all. Is it because the victims aren't Thai? Whatever the reason, Jimm and her team are going it alone. Airport hostages and hand grenades, monkeys and naked policemen - once more the sublime and the ridiculous clash in the Gulf of Thailand.
Dr Siri Paiboun, reluctant national coroner of the People’s Democratic Republic of Laos, is summoned to a remote location in the mountains of Huaphan Province, where for years the leaders of the current government had hidden out in caves, waiting to assume power. Now, as a major celebration of the new regime is scheduled to take place, an arm is found protruding from the concrete walk that had been laid from the President’s former cave hideout to his new house beneath the cliffs. Dr Siri is ordered to supervise the disinterment of the body attached to the arm, identify the corpse, and discover how he died.
From the Hardcover edition.
A blind retired dentist has been run down by a logging truck on the street in Vientiane just opposite the post office. His body is duly delivered to the morgue of Dr. Siri Paiboun, the official and only coroner of Laos. At the age of seventyfour, Dr. Siri is too old to be in awe of the new communist bureaucrats for whom he now works. He identifies the corpse, helped by the letter in the man’s pocket. But first he must decipher it; it is written in code and invisible ink. The dentist’s widow explains that the enigmatic letters and numbers describe chess moves, but they are unlike any chess symbols Siri has previously encountered. With the help of his old friend, Civilai, now a senior member of the Laos politburo; Nurse Dtui (yes'>ldquo;Fattyyes'>rdquo;); Phosy, a police officer; and Aunt Bpoo, a transvestite fortuneteller, Dr. Siri solves the mystery of the note and foils a plot to overthrow the government of Laos.
From the Hardcover edition.
In Vientiane, a boobytrapped corpse, intended for Dr. Siri, the national coroner of Laos, has been delivered to the morgue. In his absence, only Nurse Dtui’s intervention saves the lives of the morgue attendants, visiting doctors, and Madame Daeng, Dr. Siri’s fiancée.
On his way back from a communist party meeting in the north, Dr. Siri is kidnapped by seven female Hmong villagers under the direction of the village elder so that he willyes'>mdash;in the guise of Yeh Ming, the thousandyearold shaman with whom he shares his bodyyes'>mdash;exorcise the headman’s daughter whose soul is possessed by a demon, and lift the curse of the pogo stick.
From the Hardcover edition.
In povertystricken 1978 Laos, a man with a truck from the city was yes'>ldquo;somebody,yes'>rdquo; a catch for even the prettiest village virgin. The corpse of one of these bucolic beauties turns up in Dr. Siri’s morgue and his curiosity is piqued. The victim was tied to a tree and strangled but she had not, as the doctor had expected, been raped, although her flesh had been torn. And though the victim had clear, pale skin over most of her body, her hands and feet were gnarled, callused, and blistered.
On a trip to the hinterlands, Siri discovers that the beautiful female corpse bound to a tree has already risen to the status of a rural myth. This has happened many times before. He sets out to investigate this unprecedented phenomenonyes'>mdash;a serial killer in peaceful Buddhist Laosyes'>mdash;only to discover when he has identified the murderer that not only pretty maidens are at risk. Seventythreeyearold coroners can be victims, too.
From the Hardcover edition.
Seventy-four-year-old Laotian coroner Dr. Siri seeks to find the killer behind the deaths of three women from fencing-sword wounds, but first he must extricate himself from a Cambodian prison, where he faces beatings, torture, and possible death.
When a blind, retired dentist is run down by a logging truck as he crosses the road to post a letter, Dr Siri Paiboun, official and only coroner of Laos, finds himself faced with his most explosive case yet. The dentist's mortal remains aren't nearly as intriguing as the letter in his pocket. Written in invisible ink and encrypted, the letter presents Dr Siri with an irresistible challenge. Enlisting the help of his old friend, Civilai, now a senior member of the Laos politburo; Nurse Dtui ('Fatty'); Phosy, a police officer; and Aunt Bpoo, a transvestite fortune-teller, Dr Siri soon finds himself on the trail of an international plot to overthrow the government of Laos.
Dr Siri's bagged himself a holiday with his friends - an all-expenses-paid trip to the mountains of Laos. He is to assist a US-funded search for a lost CIA pilot - Boyd Bowry - missing since 1968, though Siri strongly suspects that when the helicopter exploded, the pilot followed suit.But, just hours into the trip, it becomes apparent that ulterior motives are at work within the group and those associated with the airman start dropping like the insects that frequent the surrounding landscape.Siri and co are caught up in something big. Something that goes way back and is way over their heads. And, if this wasn't bad enough, a psychic of unquestionable repute then informs Siri that he's about to die - in 'a day or two', to be precise.b
As usual, all is abnormal in Dr Siri Paiboun's morgue in downtown Vientiane. Siri is investigating the case of the Three Epees: three women skewered by a sword through their hearts. A culprit has been apprehended, tried and sentenced to death in a week's time. But Siri isn't sure they have the right man.
Siri Paiboun is suddenly a busy man. Five months into his new role as National (and only) Coroner, he has been called to the capital on a 'matter of national security'.Soon enough, he's examining carbonized corpses, meeting the deposed king and attending a shaman's conference.Meanwhile, back at his woefully inadequate morgue, savagely mauled bodies are piling up and Siri's assistant decides to investigate. Can she be dealing with a weretiger, or is it a bear of some kind? Whatever kind of animal has thirty-three teeth?b
Dr Siri Paiboun may be in his seventy-third year, but he's still as sturdy as a jungle boar - and as crafty as one. Reluctant coroner to the Lao People's Democratic Republic, he's been despatched to the country's mountainous north where the sudden appearance of a mummified arm protruding from a concrete path laid in front of the President's new mansion has caused an understandable degree of embarrassment.Dr Siri's disinterment and autopsy of the body attached to the arm provide some grisly surprises but it is his gifts as a shaman that put the septuagenarian doctor on the trail of the killer. As Siri and his team close in, they must tackle a marriage proposal, brave the perils of life on the open road, and come face-to-face with a horrific sacrificial ritual. Is it any wonder Dr Siri takes up disco dancing?b
Following a rash moment of insolence, Dr Siri Paiboun, Laos' reluctant national coroner, confused shaman and disheartened communist, is forced to go on a road trip with Judge Haeng and the Justice Department. While newly pregnant Nurse Dtui is left at the morgue to defend the staff against exploding corpses and geriatric gunslingers, Siri has his own problems. On a deserted jungle trail, Siri is kidnapped. His only route to freedom is to exorcise the local village of its demon - but that means lifting the curse of the pogo stick . . .b
When crime reporter Jimm Juree is forced to quit the city for a fishing village on the Gulf of Siam, she expects much in her life to change. Quiet will replace quick, and, surely, crime will give way to calm. There goes the career, then.Not a chance. No sooner has she settled than a surprise discovery springs from a local well. Two skeletons: both wearing the signs of thirty years of decay, with one also wearing a hat. And, if this wasn't uncommon enough, a monk is soon killed in a neighbouring town.Who are the skeletons? Who murdered the monk? Is there a connection? Step forward Jimm Juree...
Somebody in Laos is wooing and wedding country girls - and then killing them on honeymoon and binding their bodies to trees. The horror of what this monster does to his victims appals Dr Siri and his morgue team and they vow revenge. But they're distracted by the disappearance of itinerant Crazy Rajid. Siri has been getting premonitions that he's in danger. A trail of elaborate clues and remarkable disclosures about the Indian's past lead them to Vientiane's most ancient temple - and a terrible discovery. b