I am enjoying the Poke Rafferty crime series of Timothy Hallinan more and more with each novel. The overarching background story of Poke, his wife Rose who is an ex-bar girl, and Miao, an adopted street child, both unfolds and progresses as that tale moves along, and they have a continuing circle of friends. Poke’s main business is travel writing but the streets of Bangkok are filled with crime and Poke has training and experience in that area.
For the Dead
by Timothy Hallinan
read by Victor Bovine 10h 53m
(#4 in the Poke Rafferty series)
I just finished The Fear Artist last month and it’s a good thing because this tale takes place only a couple months later so the final victims, Treasure and her mother Anna, are still pretty fresh in Poke’s mind along with the traumatic events of the climax of that episode. Treasure is still in serious condition in a local institution, a hospital of sorts, and mom is still pretty disturbed emotionally. The actual bad guy cops and their boss seem to have been taken care of, but that may only be the surface level – there seems to be a higher level to this.
Meanwhile, Miao’s good friend, the very upper class and rather geeky Andrew Nguyen, the only son of a Vietnamese military captain, has lost his new iPhone and the two of them go to great lengths to find a replacement using Miao’s knowledge of street tricks to escape what they get themselves into. Unfortunately there are seriously incriminating photos still on the phone they got and there are some very bad people who want them.
It feels like this book concerns Poke’s family in the current times more than the prior books in the series and it’s kind of fun. Miao is 12 now – “…half-way between this and that- and not changed into anything – somebody who isn’t anybody,” according to her. She’s been stricken with a case of teenage angst in addition to the fact she goes to an upper class private school and has a street kid background which she has labored to hide. And Rose? – Well, no spoilers … Treasure and Anna