The Coroner's Lunch
"This series kickoff is an embarrassment of riches: Holmesian sleuthing, political satire, and [a] droll comic study of a prickly late bloomer."-Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
"The sights, smells, and colors of Laos practically jump of the pages of this inspired, often wryly witty first novel."-"Denver Post
"A wonderfully fresh and exotic mystery. . . . If Cotterill . . . had done nothing more than treat us to Siri's views on the dramatic, even comic crises that mark periods of government upheaval, his debut mystery would still be fascinating. But the multiple cases spread out on Siri's examining table . . . are not cozy entertainments, but substantial crimes that take us into the thick of political intrigue."-"The New York Times Book Review
"In Siri, Cotterill has created a detective as distinctive as Maigret or Poirot."-"Orlando Sentinel
"The Soho Press crime series . . . has done mystery connoisseurs everywhere a favor by adding Colin Cotterill to its publishing list. The author gives us exotic locations; a world that few of us know well; crisp, intelligent, and often-witty writing; and, most of all, a hero unlike any other." -"The Philadelphia Inquirer
Laos, 1975. The Communist Pathet Lao has taken over this former French colony. Dr. Siri Paiboun, a 72-year-old Paris-trained doctor, is appointed national coroner. Although he has no training for the job, there is no one else; the rest of the educated class has fled.
He is expected to come up with the answers the party wants. But crafty and charming Dr.Siri is immune to bureaucratic pressure. At his age, he reasons, what can they do to him? And he knows he cannot fail the dead who come into his care without riskof incurring their boundless displeasure. Eternity could be a long time to have the spirits mad at you.
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Review: The Coroner's Lunch (Dr. Siri Paiboun #1)User Review - Jennifer M - Goodreads
If 2 1/2 stars was an option, I'd have chosen it. The protagonist is a wonderful character, and I loved the setting and the author's writing style. The book derailed for me when Siri spent time investigation in a Hmong village, and that was it. I slogged through the rest. Read full review
Review: The Coroner's Lunch (Dr. Siri Paiboun #1)User Review - Peg Lotvin - Goodreads
Dr. Siri is a charmer, a Laotian elder statesman who has been tagged by the Party to be the country's coroner. He dreams of retirement. But people keep dying and he has a job to do. I came across this ... Read full review