Rob Kitchin's Reviews > The Coroner's Lunch

The Coroner's Lunch by Colin Cotterill
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review
May 14, 2012

really liked it
Read in October, 2010

It’s quite difficult to pigeonhole The Coroner’s Lunch, other than to say it’s a crime novel set in Laos in 1976. It’s too political to be a cozy, though it does have leanings that way; it has too much humour and comic charm for a noir or hardboiled; and it’s more a cultural commentary than a police procedural. It’s also very good. Cotterill’s skill is manifold: the story being well paced and plotted, with a good balance between show and tell, giving enough but not too much back story, and it being peopled by a wonderfully depicted set of characters. Indeed, Dr Siri, Nurse Dtui and Mr Geung are all interesting folk that one is delighted to spend time with, and the supporting cast feel like ‘real’ people rather than stock characters. There was, however, one thing that jarred a little, and it’s taken a couple of days reflection to put my finger on it. The story has a dark side and should have had a lot of tension, and yet somehow it didn’t. I think the comic charm and the warmth of Siri’s personality seemed to dissipate any sense that he was in any real danger. In this sense, the story for all its twists and turns, lacked an edge. Overall, a thoroughly enjoyable read and recommended.
1 like · flag

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read The Coroner's Lunch.
Sign In »

No comments have been added yet.