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Cambodia Noir

3.39  ·  Rating details ·  493 ratings  ·  120 reviews
Phnom Penh, Cambodia: the end of the line. Lawless, drug-soaked, forgotten—it's where bad journalists go to die. For once-great war photographer Will Keller, that's kind of a mission statement: he spends his days floating from one score to the next, taking any job that pays; his nights are a haze of sex, drugs, booze, and brawling. But Will's spiral toward oblivion is inte ...more
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published March 15th 2016 by Scribner
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The Bookish Gardener he tracked her down via the Hong Kong mafia head honcho that she went after when in Cambodia. He scoured all the regular places in Hong Kong with frie…morehe tracked her down via the Hong Kong mafia head honcho that she went after when in Cambodia. He scoured all the regular places in Hong Kong with friend Dany until he found her.(less)

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Average rating 3.39  · 
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 ·  493 ratings  ·  120 reviews

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Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
Palm Springs commercial photography

I really didn't. But I sure feel like I did.

Will Keller used to be a hotshot photographer but then he went into a personal hell and has never left it since. He has ended up in Cambodia just staying drunk, drugged out of his mind and just waiting to die. He is approached by a woman named Kara saying that she wants him to find her sister. Will has some connections to her missing sister and that sister's suitcases are at his place.

The missing sister June was an intern at a local paper, but it t
Well done Nick Seeley. Well done!

Nick knows his S!@T.....Ohhhhh....may I call you Nick???? There is nothing I like better than to dive into a book of an author that knows what he is doing. I felt safe there...I felt comfortable knowing that he knew much more than I did- and that he could guide me through it. I knew some things about Cambodia- but....

...word of advice- if you are going to read it- brush up on a bit of Cambodian history- I can guarantee a little knowledge before hand will make you
Oct 27, 2015 rated it liked it
I think I need to preface this review by saying that I discovered very quickly that I'm probably not the intended audience for this book. I read the description and saw the cover, so was expecting a thriller, but this one was a bit too much for me. Several other reviewers seem to love it.

Debut novelist Nicholas Seeley delivers readers a fast-paced look into the seedy, corrupted underbelly of Cambodia. And what a depraved world it is. Alcohol, drugs, prostitution, kidnapping, poverty, smuggling,

This is a goddamn war.

Hot damn. This book was a pure acid trip on its own!

Will Keller, a photojournalist, is living his life fast. And hard.
Sex, drugs and booze are on his daily menu.
Haunted by his past, he now tries to outrun it.

Set against the backdrop of beautiful Cambodia, Will leads us through the darkest places mankind has known. Corruption is thriving, and a war is brewing. Whether for power, or scoring the much needed high. Then Will is approached by a mysterious woman who wa
☼♄Jülie 
Incredibly good!

What a brilliant read this was!
I have recently returned from a trip to Cambodia and found this story all the more compelling for that as I could easily identify with the descriptions of the people, the streets, and the places along the river.. the pulse of the place which never seems to sleep.
Nick Seeley has an artful way of describing the soul of Cambodia, the way it gets into you. For all of it's shades of dark and light, there is something about the place that gets into your s
Feb 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
"She didn't care about the money... She didn't care about the story. Or me, or Sam, or even drugs. She didn't have reasons. She just wanted to see what was in the dark..."

Cambodia Noir reads like a drug-induced frenzy, like falling into an abyss of human depravity, senselessness, unmoored emptiness and despair. Steely's voice as our protagonist, washed-out journalist Will, is mesmerizing, and offers - for the reader at least - a sobering portrait of how far any of us may fall through a combinati
The Shayne-Train
Jan 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
This book is amazing.

A first-person present-tense feverdream, equal parts Raymond Chandler and Bret Easton Ellis. Drugs and crime, political coups and sex workers, and blood, and blood, and blood.

Visit a locale you may not have literarily been to before. The humidity and corruption of the place actually seeps from the printed words into your soul. You're tasting the fish soup and pollution as you devour page after page, even when it starts to make you feel a bit sick.

Highly recommended for anyo
Nov 11, 2016 rated it really liked it
Cambodia is a country slowly healing from its recent past. Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge's reign was one of murder, torture, starvation and corruption. It is against this backdrop that the book is based on with corruption still rampant and the country now being overrun by drugs. It is also a haven for washed up foreign reporters looking for a place to hide and die. One of them is Will Keller, who was once a star reporter but now works for a small local paper and has little to do.

Will spends much o
I know this book will be beloved by many. I know I may get trolled for disliking it. But honestly, it just annoyed me, from start to finish. There were so many things that, taken separately, I could've overlooked; taken altogether, I just couldn't wait for this book to be over.

The first and biggest problem with this novel was the narrator. Will Keller is a washed-up photojournalist who, having once been listed for a Pulitzer, now has only one goal in life: to numb his pathetic, cowardly self wit
Jan 21, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, read_2018, crime
In summary: a misguided and confused plot presented through a psychedelic haze, further hampered by the lack of a plausible protagonist and an attempt at poetic prose which failed to resonate with this reader.

Author Nick Seeley tries to emulate the noir stylings of James Sallis by way of Ken Bruen’s Jack Taylor series but misses on both. The premise is sound but the end result frustrating; Will Keller, a newspaper photographer is hired by a mysterious woman to find a missing journalist, who happ
Mar 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Nicholas Seeley knows how to write in a way that keeps you wanting more from beginning to end. The topic is depressing and violent but is written during a time when it could be described in no other way. Cambodia’s politics, the drug trade and the military are all fighting for control. Corruption is everywhere and there is a war about to start. William Keller, a journalist who drinks too much and who uses drugs, has been asked by Kara to find her sister Jun, a fellow journalist who has gone miss ...more
Feb 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Nick Seeley’s quick rapid fire sentences, merging with a story packed with sinister shadows and seemingly endless, unsolvable mysteries, a photographer who feeds on the dark thrills of Cambodia’s sordid neighborhoods, lives there, maybe even lives for those places, maybe as part of his punishment for the dark things he keeps trying to bury deep in his soul.

Riveting. You will be sucked into this world where everything is so vivid and real and rich, where every mystery leads to another unknown ta
Feb 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Nicholas Seeley has created a vibrant, in your face, fast paced picture of what hell looks and feels like. This is a not to be missed debut novel that, once read, will not be forgotten and I loved it! Cambodia is a dangerous country with a history that no-one should have to live through.

Amidst this seething morass of horror and corruption we have Will Keller. He is a has-been war photo journalist looking for oblivion from his troubled memories. He is surviving on a day to day basis awash with d
Amy Gianero Berry
Nov 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Not for the faint of heart. A hardcore mess with your brain book. Drugs, Sex, Violence, The Underworld of Cambodia. I think it was brilliant & would love to see more. Not for everyone-I think you need to be somewhat evil & dark to understand & like this novel. I found myself thinking this would make an excellent & action packed movie-Nick Seeley spins his web so perfectly & takes you into this high paced super graphic masterpiece. Looking forward to more-what happens to Will Keller? I would like ...more
Nov 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Gritty, bloody, sexy, this is noir at its finest. Will Keller is a fantastic narrator, with echoes of a young Phillip Marlowe. The suspense, combined with some heartbreaking moments (that scene in Afghanistan....) makes this unputdownable. Like Graham Greene but angrier and dirtier. Read it.
Mar 16, 2016 rated it really liked it

I used to be a big fan of crime thrillers, devouring Kathy Reichs and Ian Rankin novels in a rabid frenzy. However, after a while the patterns become a little too obvious, and even hits like I Am Pilgrim start to fall a little flat. It’s not enough to just have a gruesome crime and a scattering of intriguing clues; I want more. Cambodia Noir delivers: it is so much more than a crime thriller. More Hunter S Thompson than Nancy Drew, it’s a drug-soaked psychological labyrinth that sucks you in and
Kelsi H
Mar 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Please check out all of my reviews at!

Phnom Penh, Cambodia is the end of the road for a group of washed up journalists, including our protagonist Will Keller. He is a photographer, working for a friend who edits a local newspaper, and drifting in a haze of drugs and alcohol – which inevitably lead to sex and violence. Will is halfway through a downward spiral in a city that’s easy to get lost in, when he accidentally photographs a major governmental conspiracy
Jun 27, 2018 rated it liked it
Delivers pretty much what you’d expect given the title and synopsis, although it almost completely falls apart in the final act. Carried over the bumps by a deeply flawed protagonist, vivid setting, and some flashes of wit.
Oct 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
CAMBODIA NOIR will appeal to readers who like anything from wild west adventure novels, through to classic noir styled lone wolf investigations, set in a country with a difficult recent past, and a fraught present. Because it is a combination of all of those elements, and then some.

Dark and violent, with explicit drug taking and sex, author Nick Seeley has written a book that makes no attempt at all to cushion the blows that his characters, and his readers encounter whilst reading. It's a tough,
Nov 19, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: first-reads, suspense
I won a copy of Cambodia Noir during a Goodreads First Reads Giveaway, in exchange for an honest review.

Told in the alternating perspectives of Will Keller, a once great war photographer who spends his days shifting between chasing a high and a story, and June Saito, an intern at the local paper who disappeared. Her diary documents the time before her sister hired Will to track her, as well as sheds some light on her professional interests. When Will gets closer and closer to the truth, will he
Ralph Blackburn
Dec 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Cambodia Noir by Nick Seeley- Will Keller is a photo-journalist living in Cambodia for nine years, working for a local newspaper, and taking too many drugs and drinking too much booze, trying to forget his past. His editor tasks him with finding a lost journalist, a young girl who went out on an assignment and never came back- not unusual for this Country it seems. Armed with the girl's recent diaries, Will begins a decent into the Cambodian underworld that scares him even as he continues to dod ...more
Mar 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for sending this free ebook in return for an honest review.
Will Keller is an American reporter/photographer living in Cambodia in 2003. He has become a drug addict/alcoholic, but is still a very good photographer. A beautiful woman comes to him and hires him to find her sister, who disappeared a few months ago.
Will agrees to look for her. He then digs into the dangerous underworld of drugs and politics. He is attacked several times. I found it hard to believ
Jan 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I grabbed this book at the library because it sounded interesting; I had never heard of Seeley or the book. But I was grabbed by it immediately; it's a great throwback to the classic days of hardboiled detective fiction, but updated for a modern age. Drugs, sex, violence . . . it's all there. And the mystery is a good one that will keep you guessing. Cambodia is a great backdrop for this story, and Seeley's descriptions of setting will definitely make you feel like you're there; he has a notable ...more
Jan 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: people who enjoy action/murder mysteries
Shelves: publisher-gift
The plot: Standard hard drinking, hard drugging, antihero type with a dark past seeks missing girl in violent Cambodia. The verdict: Really well done, with consistent pacing and plenty of action but characterization (especially of minor characters) needs work, as everyone seemed to blend together. Also, there was just too much substance abuse for my taste, although I appreciate its usefulness as a plot device, keeping our narrator too addled to figure shit out.

I won this advance reading copy thr
Barry Hammond
Oct 08, 2015 rated it liked it
Pretty impressive first novel which explores the dark underbelly (is there any other belly?) of Cambodia eyeballing the drug trade, police and military corruption, gangs, journalism and the generally dark side of human beings with a flare for language and the razor shadings of despair. Not for the weak of heart but rewarding. - BH.
Jan 13, 2018 rated it it was ok
So this is really more of a 2.5 for me. I can appreciate what the author was trying to do and I can see why some people enjoy it. However, I don't enjoy reading the perspective of someone who is drugged out a good portion of the time and trying to follow their train of thought as they try to solve a mystery. I just couldn't and didn't want put myself into the head space of this world. ...more
Nov 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Cambodia Noir has all you would hope for in a novel about an exotic and mysterious country. Things are never what they seem to be; people surprise you with their guile and ruthlessness. Living in Southeast Asia could be this exciting!
Neil Plakcy
Sep 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Loved this book. Great sense of atmosphere, interesting premise and characters I wanted to know more about. Couldn't put it down. ...more
Mar 01, 2016 rated it it was ok
Hmmmmm...while well written, I found this too violent, too drugged out, and too vicious for me..
Feb 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
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Goodreads Librari...: Nick & Nicholas Seeley 5 202 Nov 17, 2017 07:37AM  

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