One Mo Stah

June 22nd, 2010

QueenOfPatpongIt’s BOOKLIST!!!

The second of the four publishing trades has just run its review, and this one is also accompanied by a star.  Two for two, so far.

Also, I have to tell you that this review knocks me out.  The guy who wrote it likes the same things I do.

You have to imagine a big red star because I can’t figure out how to put it there.

Advanced Review – Uncorrected Proof
Issue: July 1, 2010
The Queen of Patpong.
Hallinan, Timothy (Author)
Sep 2010. 320 p. Morrow, hardcover, $24.99. (9780061672262).
Life in Bangkok is good for writer Poke Rafferty and his unlikely family. Poke’s new book is selling well,
and he’s happily in love with wife Rose, once a Patpong bar girl. Daughter Miaow, just a few years
removed from living on the streets, is enrolled in a good private school and becoming a feisty
preadolescent. But their contentment is upended by Howard Horner, a dangerous man from Rose’s past.
Hallinan’s previous Poke thrillers have been reliably entertaining, featuring a fascinating and exotic locale
and exceptionally malevolent bad guys (Breathing Water, 2009), but this one is a breakthrough. The
backstory concerning Rose’s impoverished life in a squalid Isaan village, her father’s plan to sell her into
prostitution, and her escape to Bangkok and life in the sex trade is riveting, genuinely moving, and entirely
plausible. Miaow’s entry into a stormy adolescence, and her parents’ efforts to deal with it, are knowingly
written. Even Bangkok seems more richly detailed than in past adventures, and Poke’s effort to condense
The Tempest for Miaow’s school’s production (Miaow plays Ariel) is thoroughly charming. The Queen of
Patpong is a terrific page-turner, and the surprising denouement will thrill readers who want the good
guys—or girls—to win in the end.
— Thomas Gaughan

The Queen of Patpong

Hallinan, Timothy (Author)

Sep 2010. 320 p. Morrow, hardcover, $24.99. (9780061672262).

Life in Bangkok is good for writer Poke Rafferty and his unlikely family. Poke’s new book is selling well, and he’s happily in love with wife Rose, once a Patpong bar girl. Daughter Miaow, just a few years removed from living on the streets, is enrolled in a good private school and becoming a feisty preadolescent. But their  contentment is upended by Howard Horner, a dangerous man from Rose’s past.  Hallinan’s previous Poke thrillers have been reliably entertaining, featuring a fascinating and exotic locale and exceptionally malevolent bad guys (Breathing Water, 2009), but this one is a breakthrough. The backstory concerning Rose’s impoverished life in a squalid Isaan village, her father’s plan to sell her into prostitution, and her escape to Bangkok and life in the sex trade is riveting, genuinely moving, and entirely plausible. Miaow’s entry into a stormy adolescence, and her parents’ efforts to deal with it, are knowingly written. Even Bangkok seems more richly detailed than in past adventures, and Poke’s effort to condense “The Tempest” for Miaow’s school’s production (Miaow plays Ariel) is thoroughly charming. The Queen of Patpong is a terrific page-turner, and the surprising denouement will thrill readers who want the good guys—or girls—to win in the end.

— Thomas Gaughan

3 Responses to “One Mo Stah”

  1. Glenn W. Says:

    Holy Crap!!!

    The mother load, my friend, the mother load. Obviously Mr. Gaugham has impeccable insight and taste in good literature. Mostly, I delight in the fact that all the years of hard work at your craft is being recognized and applauded.
    Congratulations, good buddy. Keep up the good work. You give all of us hope.

    Cheers!!

  2. Helen Simonson Says:

    Tim, I have a good feeling this is indeed the breakthrough! The combination of thrilling mystery and the deeper story of Rose’s background sounds like a winner to me. And when this book is a big hit, everyone who is not already a huge fan will have to go back and read the others. Poke and Rose (especially Rose this time) are going to knock it out of the park! I can’t wait to read it.

  3. Timothy Hallinan Says:

    Thank you, Glenn, and thank you, Helen. Sorry to gave taken so long to respond. The new book is eating me alive. (You know about that, Helen.)

    Someone once asked Elmore Leonard if it didn’t get easier after 75 (!) novels and he said, no, because “You get harder to please.”

    From your lips to God’s ear, Helen.

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