The 1980 Olympic Games in Moscow is already rife with controversy, but when a Lao athlete is accused of murder, it escalates into a full blown international incident. In the twelfth entry to the series, Dr. Siri Paiboun and his quirky team of misfits are on the case in a city and country foreign to them, yet familiar in its corruption of justice.
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.
About the Author
Colin Cotterill is the author of eleven other books in the Dr. Siri Paiboun series: The Coroner’s Lunch, Thirty-Three Teeth, Disco for the Departed, Anarchy and Old Dogs, Curse of the Pogo Stick, The Merry Misogynist, Love Songs from a Shallow Grave, Slash and Burn, The Woman Who Wouldn’t Die, Six and a Half Deadly Sins and I Shot the Buddha. His fiction has won a Dilys Award and a CWA Dagger in the Library. He lives in Chumphon, Thailand, with his wife and five deranged dogs.
Read an Excerpt
Comrade Noo looked awful but Siri’s prognosis was positive.
Excerpted from "The Rat Catchers' Olympics"
Copyright © 2018 Colin Cotterill.
Excerpted by permission of Soho Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
The 1980 Olympics, boycotted by the United States and other major countries, provides Dr. Siri Paiborn, the retired Lao coroner, and his wife, Daeng, an opportunity for a trip to Moscow. Unfortunately the politically outspoken doctor is the last on the list to be selected as team doctor. But that doesn’t stop him from finagling the assignment. The games give the Democratic People’s Republic of Laos a chance to field their first-ever Olympic team, even if they have no chance to win an event. The mystery to be solved involves a suspicion that one of the athletes is a ringer, and possibly an assassin. Thus begins a two-way long-distance investigation, with Dr. Siri and his team in Moscow and Inspector Phosy in Laos, attempting to identify the person. When one of the Lao athletes is falsely accused by Moscow police of a murder, he has to solve not one but two crimes. All the while, Dr. Siri, his wife and friend, Comrade Civilai, head of the delegation, and others are enjoying the free drinks and hospitality of the Russian Government, which permits the author to inject much humor into the conversations. And the mystery is solved in a most ingenious manner. Recommended.
USSR, situational-humor, verbal-humor, suspense, supernatural, olympic-games, snark-fest, mystery, Laos This one exceeded the pre-publication hype! I did a fast book-a-day binge reread of the series to make certain that I didn't miss anything, but it wasn't necessary (but it was fun). Lots of laughs and snickers, mystery and suspense, wacky characters, red herrings, ghosts, and there are murders and intrigue both in Moscow and Laos. The Lao are thrilled to be flown to and housed in Moscow, even knowing that they have little hope of winning, but everyone around them cheers them on and gets caught up in their enthusiasm. I loved it!