The Rat Catchers' Olympics (Dr. Siri Paiboun #12)
The boycotting of the 1980 Olympic games in Moscow has given  the Democratic People’s Republic of Laos the chance they needed to field their first-ever team. It’s also just the sort of opportunity the now retired, and therefore very bored, ex-National Coroner of Laos, the venerable Dr. Siri Paiboun, to visit a city he has long wanted to see. He just needs to get the band back together first.1980: The Democratic People’s Republic of Laos is proud to be competing in its first-ever Olympics. Of course, half the world is boycotting the Moscow Summer Olympic Games to protest Russia’s recent invasion of Afghanistan, but that has made room for athletes from countries that are usually too small or underfunded to be competitive—countries like Laos.Ex-national coroner of Laos Dr. Siri Paiboun may be retired, but he and his wife, Madame Daeng, would do just about anything to have a chance to visit Moscow, so Siri finagles the job of medical oversight of the Olympians. Most of the athletes are young and innocent village people who have never worn running shoes, never mind imagined anything as marvelous as the Moscow Olympic Village. As the competition heats up, however, Siri begins to suspect that one of the athletes is not who he says he is. Fearing a conspiracy, Siri and his friends investigate, liaising in secret with Inspector Phosy back home in Laos to see if the man might be an assassin. But Siri’s progress is derailed when another Lao Olympian is accused of murder. Now in the midst of a murky international incident, Dr. Siri must navigate not one but two paranoid and secretive government machines to make sure justice is done.

The Rat Catchers' Olympics (Dr. Siri Paiboun #12) Details

TitleThe Rat Catchers' Olympics (Dr. Siri Paiboun #12)
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseAug 15th, 2017
PublisherSoho Crime
Rating
GenreMystery, Fiction, Historical, Historical Fiction, Literature, Asian Literature, Crime

The Rat Catchers' Olympics (Dr. Siri Paiboun #12) Review

  • Carol.
    January 1, 1970
    The Dr. Siri series follows Laos's only coroner, a medical doctor and cynical party member of the socialist government. In the first book, The Coroner's Lunch, Dr. Siri begins to experience dreams in which the ghosts of some of his dead clients speak to him, and for a while, neither he nor the reader are entirely sure what is true. I enjoyed the characterization of the series a great deal, as well as insight into a different cultural and political system. I read through the series until two issu The Dr. Siri series follows Laos's only coroner, a medical doctor and cynical party member of the socialist government. In the first book, The Coroner's Lunch, Dr. Siri begins to experience dreams in which the ghosts of some of his dead clients speak to him, and for a while, neither he nor the reader are entirely sure what is true. I enjoyed the characterization of the series a great deal, as well as insight into a different cultural and political system. I read through the series until two issues in the sixth book, The Merry Misogynist were so irritating that I couldn't force myself to the seventh. Reading Shamini Flint's Inspector Singh series, however, had me nostalgic for the elderly shenanigans of Dr. Siri and his cohorts, so when I saw this offered on Edelweiss, I decided to give it a try.What a pleasant surprise! I felt like we had returned to the sassy confidence of Dr. Siri in the first few books, along with the expected impish insubordination from him and Comrade (Minister) Civilai, one of Siri's oldest friends, both literally and figuratively. In this book, the Olympics are being hosted by the Soviet Union, and they've invited all the socialist countries. Civilai is appointed the nominal leader of the delegation, but it appears Siri won't be invited:"'They said they'd sooner bring in a monkey than have you represent Laos at an international event. They think you're a liability. That you'll embarrass the Party.'"Without too much delay, Siri gets himself and his wife Madame Daeng invited by harassing the Vice Minister of Health:"'Ah, the land of opportunity,' said Siri. 'Just think what you might become when you turn twenty-five.''I'm forty-seven,' said the Vice Minister, more eager to correct the math than to tackle the sarcasm."They're headed to Russia with the Laotian team of shooters, boxers, runners and a race-walker. The Laotians are wide-eyed country rubes in the big city, but one of the charms of the story is their fascination with city luxuries and conveniences. Civilai is there to encourage them despite their inevitable defeat:"'It's not whether you win or lose that's important, it's how you play the game.' He looked at the observers from the ministry. 'Marx said that.'"When one of the boxers appears to have murdered a local woman, things turn serious. Siri and Civilai are convinced of the man's innocence and concerned about the inadequacy of the local investigation. Comrade Inspector Phosy is back at home in Laos and starts investigating from his end.The humor ranges from broad to subtle, and the tongue-in-cheek tone is always one of the delights of the series. The murder mystery is decent, albeit convoluted, and made a sort of sense. At the same time, there's more serious undertones with the Laotian government and it's new era of reform. The characters are fun, but generally played more broadly than subtlely. Apparently Madame Daeng now has a tail from their recent adventures. There's a small plot involving Siri's largely absent spirit guide, but in this case it doesn't have much effect on the mystery, only an ill monk back in Laos. Overall, I enjoyed it quite a bit, rather like having a familiar noodle dish for dinner--nothing earth-shattering, but still tasty and warming.Many thanks to Edelweiss and Soho Crime for providing me a copy to read!
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  • Mal Warwick
    January 1, 1970
    A book's title serves three functions: first, to catch a reader's attention; second, to signal something about the book's contents; and, third, at least in some cases, to convey a sense of the style or approach the author will take. Colin Cotterill's The Rat Catchers' Olympics admirably accomplishes all three objectives. Thus, as you might guess, this is a comic novel, even though it's the twelfth in a series of what are marketed as mystery novels. The book is actually, at least in part, about a A book's title serves three functions: first, to catch a reader's attention; second, to signal something about the book's contents; and, third, at least in some cases, to convey a sense of the style or approach the author will take. Colin Cotterill's The Rat Catchers' Olympics admirably accomplishes all three objectives. Thus, as you might guess, this is a comic novel, even though it's the twelfth in a series of what are marketed as mystery novels. The book is actually, at least in part, about a fictional event at the 1980 Olympics in which rat catchers competed with one another—to catch rats. And, clearly, none of this is to be taken seriously.Dr. Siri Paiboun, formerly the national coroner of Laos, is now in his seventies and retired. (Apparently, he was the country's only coroner.) It's 1980, and Jimmy Carter has just canceled US participation in the 1980 Moscow Summer Olympics and persuaded sixty other countries to join the boycott. To help fill the holes in the Olympics roster, the Brezhnev regime has invited small countries that could never compete at the Olympic level to come to Moscow. Laos—formally the Laos Democratic People's Republic—is among those countries. Laos has no hope of winning any medals. The members of the country's small team will be happy if they can simply finish their events.Dr. Paiboun's best friend, former Politburo member Civilai, has been named the head of the Olympic delegation. Dr. Paiboun joins as the team physician, traveling with his formidable wife, a tough former intelligence officer. These three, together with a police officer back in Vientiane, collaborate on an investigation into a murder, a planned assassination, and other assorted misdeeds. It's a lot of fun, and funny almost all the way. But the author has saved the most fun until close to the end, when three Olympians, all professional rat catchers in their countries, compete to catch the most rats.The Rat Catchers' Olympics is the most enjoyable by far of the novels in the series. I found some of the earlier entries to be tedious. They were heavily dominated by references to the supernatural, which I found annoying. Mystical and mysterious things happen in this book, too. But it's easy enough to shrug them off as just more examples of the book's humor.
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  • J.R.
    January 1, 1970
    Given the fact most of the free world is boycotting the 1980 Olympics in Moscow, the Democratic People's Republic of Laos has its first chance in history to compete in the games.With his pal Comrade Civilai heading up the delegation, it isn't difficult for former National Coroner Dr. Siri Paiboun to get himself appointed to the medical staff. Siri and his wife Madame Daeng are just back from a clandestine visit to Thailand and he quickly "arranges" for his spouse and Nurse Dtui to accompany them Given the fact most of the free world is boycotting the 1980 Olympics in Moscow, the Democratic People's Republic of Laos has its first chance in history to compete in the games.With his pal Comrade Civilai heading up the delegation, it isn't difficult for former National Coroner Dr. Siri Paiboun to get himself appointed to the medical staff. Siri and his wife Madame Daeng are just back from a clandestine visit to Thailand and he quickly "arranges" for his spouse and Nurse Dtui to accompany them.While this quartet is busy shepherding their naive flock of athletes around the wonders of the Soviet capitol they discover they're also hosting an assassin, though his target isn't easy to determine. As they investigate, with the assistance of Comrade Inspector Phosy back home in Laos, things get increasingly complicated.Between poking fun at communism, rounds of drinking and gorging on free cinema, Siri and Civilai unravel the tangled web and solve several murders and other skulduggery.Personally, I could do without the paranormal elements. But, if you like a series with eccentric characters, glimpses into other cultures and whimsical humor, this is one not to be missed.
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  • Mike Owens
    January 1, 1970
    This work features a Laotian physician/detective, the latest of a series of 12. The setting ranges from Laos to the 1980 Olympics held in Russia, boycotted by the US and a number of other countries, leaving the events open to groups that had never before entered teams. In particular, the team from Laos, sprinters, shooters, boxers and a lone race walker, were invited with little hope of winning. The title, Rat Catcher's Olympics, describes a competition among three entrants, one Lao, one from Ru This work features a Laotian physician/detective, the latest of a series of 12. The setting ranges from Laos to the 1980 Olympics held in Russia, boycotted by the US and a number of other countries, leaving the events open to groups that had never before entered teams. In particular, the team from Laos, sprinters, shooters, boxers and a lone race walker, were invited with little hope of winning. The title, Rat Catcher's Olympics, describes a competition among three entrants, one Lao, one from Russia and one from Botswana, each with his own particular method for killing rodents. Needless to say, this is an amusing and highly entertaining book. The fun and games are set off by a conspiracy to assassinate a corrupt political figure who has his sights on the presidency of Laos. The team (Dr. Siri, Daeng, Civilai, Dtui and Inspector Phosy) manage to investigate while partaking liberally of the lavish set up provided by the Russians.The author lives in Thailand, making an otherwise unfamiliar locale quite realistic. In particular, the characters' names would seem impossible to keep up with...I had enough trouble, as it was.All in all, highly recommended. I haven't read the preceding works, but Siri and his group kept me happily reading away from beginning to end.
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  • Marie
    January 1, 1970
    When big contenders such as the United States boycott the 1980 Olympic games in Moscow, the door is opened for Laos to send a team of athletes including boxers, sprinters, a race walker, and a team of seven marksmen. They don't expect to get much further than the opening ceremonies, but they've got heart. They've also got a would-be assassin amongst them. Dr. Siri Paiboun and his ragtag team of compatriots must unmask a potential killer, preserve the life of the likely future president of Laos, When big contenders such as the United States boycott the 1980 Olympic games in Moscow, the door is opened for Laos to send a team of athletes including boxers, sprinters, a race walker, and a team of seven marksmen. They don't expect to get much further than the opening ceremonies, but they've got heart. They've also got a would-be assassin amongst them. Dr. Siri Paiboun and his ragtag team of compatriots must unmask a potential killer, preserve the life of the likely future president of Laos, and keep themselves out of trouble, all while cheering their athletes on at the games. Quirky characters, a great plot, and historical detail make for another gold-medal winner in this lovable series.
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  • Sherry Mackay
    January 1, 1970
    Oh dear. Definitely not one of his best dr Siri books. I got thru it but it was an effort. Perhaps the author is tired of this series. A bit formulaic, a bit boring actually. Read his earlier ones if you fancy a fun ride.
  • Suzka
    January 1, 1970
    I love Siri and Daeng and Dtui and Civilai, etc., so I am always happy when a new volume comes out. It was a nice twist to change the setting to Moscow in 1980, although the chances of that Olympic cafeteria serving lemon meringue pie stand at approximately zero. However, there were more choppy elements which were distracting rather than helpful to the overall flow. A person who picks up this book without the benefit of the backstory of Siri's supernatural propensities would surely be confused. I love Siri and Daeng and Dtui and Civilai, etc., so I am always happy when a new volume comes out. It was a nice twist to change the setting to Moscow in 1980, although the chances of that Olympic cafeteria serving lemon meringue pie stand at approximately zero. However, there were more choppy elements which were distracting rather than helpful to the overall flow. A person who picks up this book without the benefit of the backstory of Siri's supernatural propensities would surely be confused. Still, a less-than-stellar Siri book beats Twilight any day of the week, right?
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  • Viva
    January 1, 1970
    The author has written 11 other Dr. Siri Paiboun books so it's possible I'm one of the rare readers who don't like this book.. The opening pages of this book was very hard to read and the writing was awkward and hard to follow. Right away, I noticed that this was a "humorous" work but humor is very hard to pull off and I thought some of the humor was cringeworthy. The characters were flat and there was little to distinguish them from one another. After struggling to the middle of the book I foun The author has written 11 other Dr. Siri Paiboun books so it's possible I'm one of the rare readers who don't like this book.. The opening pages of this book was very hard to read and the writing was awkward and hard to follow. Right away, I noticed that this was a "humorous" work but humor is very hard to pull off and I thought some of the humor was cringeworthy. The characters were flat and there was little to distinguish them from one another. After struggling to the middle of the book I found the writing to be without focus. Worse, I found the characters to speak and act like Americans/Westerners except for their setting and names. I found nothing redeeming about this book and would not recommend it. I got this book as a free ARC.Edit: After looking at all the other reviews I find I'm the only reviewer who panned this book. I re-read parts of the book again and I have to stand by my review. It just didn't do it for me. The writing is just awkward.
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  • Martha Bullen
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you to Soho Press for the opportunity to read an advance review copy of the latest Dr. Sir Paiboun mystery, which will be published in August.As a long-time enthusiast of Colin Cotterill's entertaining series set in Laos, I found The Rat Catcher's Olympics a delight from start to finish, and a terrific summer read. Surprisingly, Dr. Siri, his wife, Dang, Civilai and Dtui all managed to wrangle themselves an invitation to go to the Moscow Olympics in 1980 with Laos' small, inexperienced tea Thank you to Soho Press for the opportunity to read an advance review copy of the latest Dr. Sir Paiboun mystery, which will be published in August.As a long-time enthusiast of Colin Cotterill's entertaining series set in Laos, I found The Rat Catcher's Olympics a delight from start to finish, and a terrific summer read. Surprisingly, Dr. Siri, his wife, Dang, Civilai and Dtui all managed to wrangle themselves an invitation to go to the Moscow Olympics in 1980 with Laos' small, inexperienced team of athletes, who are dazzled by their first experience with a great world capital. Inspector Phosy is left at home unraveling a mystery which may involve a plot to send an assassin to Moscow. Of course Dr. Siri and crew are drawn into trying to identify the athlete who is there in disguise and to prevent this crime, when they're not sampling Moscow's delights and turning out in force to cheer for their team.It was fun to see many of my favorite characters in an entirely new setting, and to see the Moscow Olympics, which was boycotted by most Western countries, from an entirely new perspective. This was a sample passage I enjoyed from the book: "'You got jeans?' he asked. 'You got jeans?' was the 'Hello, how are you?' of the Moscow Olympics."This book works well as a stand-alone novel for those who may not have read the earlier books, though it's even more fun if you're familiar with this series. For readers who may have found the supernatural elements out of control in the last couple of books, they are dialed down quite a bit in this latest novel, with a few notable exceptions.
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  • Gloria Feit
    January 1, 1970
    The 1980 Olympics, boycotted by the United States and other major countries, provides Dr. Siri Paiborn, the retired Lao coroner, and his wife, Daeng, an opportunity for a trip to Moscow. Unfortunately the politically outspoken doctor is the last on the list to be selected as team doctor. But that doesn’t stop him from finagling the assignment. The games give the Democratic People’s Republic of Laos a chance to field their first-ever Olympic team, even if they have no chance to win an event.The m The 1980 Olympics, boycotted by the United States and other major countries, provides Dr. Siri Paiborn, the retired Lao coroner, and his wife, Daeng, an opportunity for a trip to Moscow. Unfortunately the politically outspoken doctor is the last on the list to be selected as team doctor. But that doesn’t stop him from finagling the assignment. The games give the Democratic People’s Republic of Laos a chance to field their first-ever Olympic team, even if they have no chance to win an event.The mystery to be solved involves a suspicion that one of the athletes is a ringer, and possibly an assassin. Thus begins a two-way long-distance investigation, with Dr. Siri and his team in Moscow and Inspector Phosy in Laos, attempting to identify the person. When one of the Lao athletes is falsely accused by Moscow police of a murder, he has to solve not one but two crimes.All the while, Dr. Siri, his wife and friend, Comrade Civilai, head of the delegation, and others are enjoying the free drinks and hospitality of the Russian Government, which permits the author to inject much humor into the conversations. And the mystery is solved in a most ingenious manner. Recommended.
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  • Gwen
    January 1, 1970
    I'm coming late to the party, only meeting Dr. Siri Paiboun, his lovely wife, nurse and the rest of the gang on their dozenth escapade, so clearly I have some catching up to do! The corruption of the Lao government meets that of the Soviet Union at the 1980 Olympics, where teams with no hope (read: Laos) might actually make an ok showing with the defection of the US and many other countries. The team makes a good impression, with their Lao chant, but along the way Siri and crew must solve a murd I'm coming late to the party, only meeting Dr. Siri Paiboun, his lovely wife, nurse and the rest of the gang on their dozenth escapade, so clearly I have some catching up to do! The corruption of the Lao government meets that of the Soviet Union at the 1980 Olympics, where teams with no hope (read: Laos) might actually make an ok showing with the defection of the US and many other countries. The team makes a good impression, with their Lao chant, but along the way Siri and crew must solve a murder in Moscow, orchestrated by someone in Laos but carried out by someone on the Olympic team. And, at inopportune times, Siri disappears, to learn more about how to communicate with the dead (and almost dead).One important note: the Lao do not leave empty handed. Not only are their bellies full, their hearts full of socialist good cheer, but they can claim a medal: their rat catcher is superior to those from Botswana and Moscow.
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  • Martina
    January 1, 1970
    This Dr. Siri novel will be published August 15, 2017 by Soho Crime. This is the 12th book in the series. The Mystery Book Group read the first, The Coroner's Lunch, in February 2006. I've loved every book since. A friend got me this ARC from Soho Crime at Book Expo in NYC.Finished! I did not do much else but read for the past couple of days. I did figure out the murderer well before the end, but the entire book was so pitch perfect for 1980 and the whole Olympics in Russia that I just could not This Dr. Siri novel will be published August 15, 2017 by Soho Crime. This is the 12th book in the series. The Mystery Book Group read the first, The Coroner's Lunch, in February 2006. I've loved every book since. A friend got me this ARC from Soho Crime at Book Expo in NYC.Finished! I did not do much else but read for the past couple of days. I did figure out the murderer well before the end, but the entire book was so pitch perfect for 1980 and the whole Olympics in Russia that I just could not stop. Dr. Siri and the entire crew, including Daeng and her tail, just made me smile non-stop. The absolute top of the perfect feast was at the bottom of page 254 with a mention of Boney M! I can't even tell you what memories that conjured up! : } Thanks to Colin Cotterill for serving up another fabulous Dr. Siri novel. I will be thinking about bits and pieces for some time to come and probably laughing out loud in inappropriate places because of it. Life is good.
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  • Scilla
    January 1, 1970
    Dr. Siri gets himself assigned as the team doctor when Laos is invited to Russia for the Olympic games when several countries are boycotting. His wife Daeng and friends Civilai and Dtui are also along. They find one of the shooters from the army didn't show up on the plane and there was another unnamed person taking his place. They soon believe that the new person on the team would be killing someone in Russia, probably a Laotian. The team and advisors all have a wonderful time, eating great foo Dr. Siri gets himself assigned as the team doctor when Laos is invited to Russia for the Olympic games when several countries are boycotting. His wife Daeng and friends Civilai and Dtui are also along. They find one of the shooters from the army didn't show up on the plane and there was another unnamed person taking his place. They soon believe that the new person on the team would be killing someone in Russia, probably a Laotian. The team and advisors all have a wonderful time, eating great food and being entertained regularly. Although the Laotian athletes aren't very good, the team does a wonderful job of cheering their teammates on. Although this book is very amusing and the killer remains a mystery to the end, there appears to be a sameness in Dr. Siri's activities as the series gets longer.
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  • Susan
    January 1, 1970
    Since many western nations boycotted the 1980 Moscow Olympics, some third world countries were invited to attend. That's how Laos came to send a small delegation, and how Dr. Siri finagled a place for himself and his wife Daeng. They're en route before they learn that there may be an assassin in the group, target unknown. The Laotians have a marvelous time in Moscow, except for the unpleasantness when one of their number is arrested for murder. Fortunately, they're able to prove to Soviet author Since many western nations boycotted the 1980 Moscow Olympics, some third world countries were invited to attend. That's how Laos came to send a small delegation, and how Dr. Siri finagled a place for himself and his wife Daeng. They're en route before they learn that there may be an assassin in the group, target unknown. The Laotians have a marvelous time in Moscow, except for the unpleasantness when one of their number is arrested for murder. Fortunately, they're able to prove to Soviet authorities that he's not the man they want. But the assassination hangs over them, and also over Inspector Phosy, their friend back in Vientiane, who is trying to find who killed a retired soldier who promised him information.
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  • Kathleen Gray
    January 1, 1970
    Don't pass this by because you haven't read the earlier books- it's a terrific and funny novel. When have you read about a Laotian coroner (Siri) and his wife (Madame Daeng) at the 1980 Moscow Olympics? What an imagination Cotterill has- although it's well grounded in a strong understanding of Laotian culture and politics of the period. Siri is one of my favorite characters- he's funny, smart, and takes no guff. Beware that it might take a bit to drop into this novel. I always find that I have t Don't pass this by because you haven't read the earlier books- it's a terrific and funny novel. When have you read about a Laotian coroner (Siri) and his wife (Madame Daeng) at the 1980 Moscow Olympics? What an imagination Cotterill has- although it's well grounded in a strong understanding of Laotian culture and politics of the period. Siri is one of my favorite characters- he's funny, smart, and takes no guff. Beware that it might take a bit to drop into this novel. I always find that I have to adapt to the rhythm of Cotterill's writing, although once I do, I thoroughly enjoy him. Thanks to Edelweiss for the ARC. This is a terrifically entertaining mystery with twists, turns, political commentary, pathos and humor.
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  • Jan
    January 1, 1970
    This one exceeded the pre publication hype! I did a fast book-a-day binge reread of the series to make certain that I didn't miss anything, but it wasn't necessary (but it was fun). Lots of laughs and snickers, mystery and suspense, wacky characters, red herrings, ghosts, and there are murders and intrigue both in Moscow and Laos. The Lao are thrilled to be flown to and housed in Moscow, even knowing that they have little hope of winning, but everyone around them cheers them on and gets caught u This one exceeded the pre publication hype! I did a fast book-a-day binge reread of the series to make certain that I didn't miss anything, but it wasn't necessary (but it was fun). Lots of laughs and snickers, mystery and suspense, wacky characters, red herrings, ghosts, and there are murders and intrigue both in Moscow and Laos. The Lao are thrilled to be flown to and housed in Moscow, even knowing that they have little hope of winning, but everyone around them cheers them on and gets caught up in their enthusiasm. I loved it! Clive Chafer continues to keep me from going crazier trying to pronounce unfamiliar names and words while adding to the personalities of the characters.
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  • Colleen
    January 1, 1970
    EnjoyableI think the author struggles a bit as the series continues to come up with plausible situations for his elderly characters to become involved with, but they remain interesting and fun.The supernatural elements get more play as the series continues, from not being sure he housed a spirit to occassionally vanishing into the spirit world is a long journey, and those who are just coming in to the series now would probably find it puzzling. Olympic setting was nice, added a feeling of camara EnjoyableI think the author struggles a bit as the series continues to come up with plausible situations for his elderly characters to become involved with, but they remain interesting and fun.The supernatural elements get more play as the series continues, from not being sure he housed a spirit to occassionally vanishing into the spirit world is a long journey, and those who are just coming in to the series now would probably find it puzzling. Olympic setting was nice, added a feeling of camaraderie and hopefulness, though it was the olympics that the western democracies gave a pass to.All in all, a fairly standard addition to the series
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  • Tom Gorski
    January 1, 1970
    Very happy Colin Cotterill continues to write the Dr. Siri series. As a mystery it is just average as they all are and one can ascertain the "bad guy" half way through the book. That fact is unimportant as these stories are so much more than that...with humor and sadness he uses a variety of primary and secondary characters (with "characters" emphasized) to let one see the ridiculous society Laos became after the revolution in the 1970's and beyond. There is so much more to these books than meet Very happy Colin Cotterill continues to write the Dr. Siri series. As a mystery it is just average as they all are and one can ascertain the "bad guy" half way through the book. That fact is unimportant as these stories are so much more than that...with humor and sadness he uses a variety of primary and secondary characters (with "characters" emphasized) to let one see the ridiculous society Laos became after the revolution in the 1970's and beyond. There is so much more to these books than meets the eye (Bpoo would also hold this view).
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  • Kiwi Carlisle
    January 1, 1970
    Dr. Siri Paiboun and his coterie of friends retain their charm and freshness in their twelfth adventure, wandering through 1980 Moscow with their usual blend of geriatric savvy, delight and cynicism, and Dr. Siri’s ability to see to the heart of things. My favorite quote:”The Olympics was a kind of war: a war where the losers don’t die and the winners don’t gloat, a war where the armies get together afterward for a drink and a cuddle.” Good stuff!
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  • Anne
    January 1, 1970
    Interesting plot that takes place mostly in Moscow during the 1980 Olympics, the first Olympics to feature Laotians. Naturally, Siri uses his wiles to get himself selected as team doctor and brings most of his henchmen with him. Good thing, too, because before it's all over there are not one, not two, but three murders to solve. And, let us not forget the vermin eradication officers after whom the book is titled...Good reading.
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  • viemag
    January 1, 1970
    I enjoyed the twelfth book int he Dr Siri Paiboun Series by Colin Cotterill. In this outing the gang all except for Phosy and Geung go off to Russia to participate in the 1978 Olympics. Of course the events have Cotterill's trademark satire and humor. I laughed outloud several times and wondered how close to the truth the author really was in his story telling. This time the reader gets to know Phosy a bit better and I realized he is a very mysterious character. A very enjoyable read.
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  • Monica
    January 1, 1970
    The 1980 Moscow Olympics were boycotted by almost all of the major sporting powers, and the USSR made up for this by inviting a host of small nations who had never been able to compete before to participate. The final rat catching contest is pretty funny, as is the whole business of the die- hard Laotian sports fans chasing their hopelessly outplayed teams on to yet another thrilling defeat in one event after another. But I find myself getting a bit tired of Dr. Siri’s spirit guide and Madame Da The 1980 Moscow Olympics were boycotted by almost all of the major sporting powers, and the USSR made up for this by inviting a host of small nations who had never been able to compete before to participate. The final rat catching contest is pretty funny, as is the whole business of the die- hard Laotian sports fans chasing their hopelessly outplayed teams on to yet another thrilling defeat in one event after another. But I find myself getting a bit tired of Dr. Siri’s spirit guide and Madame Daeng’s fairly recent tail. It all seems a bit too self-consciously cute, and the crimes are not very interesting.
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  • Libby
    January 1, 1970
    As usual in the Dr. Siri books, several mysteries are intertwined. While I figured out the primary mystery fairly quickly, several strands were pleasantly baffling, and the unique setting of the 1980 Moscow Olympics, where Laos really did have a team competing, was fun. One of my favorites in the series.
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  • Laura Mccrea
    January 1, 1970
    One of the best Dr. Siri books and they're all good. After reading other "best selling" mysteries, this book is a refreshing reminder that a mystery novel can be well written, cleverly humorous, slyly political, have wonderfully developed characters and... a really good mystery story.
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  • Michael Quillin
    January 1, 1970
    I'm always sad when I finish one of the Siri books because I know it will be a while until the next one.Characters great as always and the humor and insights are there. Plot is fine although like a Marx Bros. movie, it's not really central.Love the whole series and this does not disappoint.
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  • Claire
    January 1, 1970
    The latest entry in my favorite series delivered. Dr. Siri is the team Doctor with the Laotian contingent to the 1980 Moscow Olympics. Of course murder occurs both in Moscow and back in Laos. These books are always a delight.
  • Richard A Ailes
    January 1, 1970
    Another wonder tailWith vivid imagination, wonderful characters, and a well organize plot, Cotterill creates another great Dr. Siri story. Very well done.
  • Jane
    January 1, 1970
    Another winner from Colin Cotterill - Dr. Siri does the Moscow Olympics proud!
  • Harriet
    January 1, 1970
    Totally charming! A pleasure from beginning to end!
  • Gary Van Cott
    January 1, 1970
    This is one of the best books in this series. Thoroughly enjoyable. It was good to get the main characters out of Laos for a change.
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