Sunday, January 6, 2008

Bangkok Laws-Jim Michael Hansen

Bangkok Laws
Jim Michael Hansen
Dark Sky, Mar 2008. $13.95
ISBN: 9780976924319

Recent law school graduate twenty-five year old Page Alexander passed the Colorado Bar and is now certified as a lawyer. However, she learns that in Denver, firms are not doing a lot of hiring of newbies especially those ranked in the middle of her class. She earns money as she did in school at Sam’s Eatery. She drops dishes that shatter into pieces; a beautiful stranger helps her clean up the mess.

The woman Ja'Von Deveraux hires Paige explaining that she was sold into sexual slavery in Bangkok and thirsts for vengeance. Although horrified with what Ja’Von tells her, the rookie attorney agrees to work with her. They begin looking into who is behind the abduction of young women in the Mile High City with Ja’Von doing the sleuthing and Paige studying international law.

At the same time that Denver Police Department Homicide Chief Detective Bryson Coventry is struggling with an ugly case involving missing young blond females and corpses from apparently the same nasty gang. The first female he found dead he pledged to her that he will find her assailants, but so far the case has not been going well as more females vanish and both genders suffer homicides. He meets Ja’Von and is half way in love at first sight while both work the same case.

The cast makes the latest Coventry police procedural into what should be considered one of the best investigative tales of the year as the white sexual slave market seems genuine due to the secondary characters; many of whom are the bad guys. Ja’Von is terrific as she lives for vengeance whereas her idealist attorney is the “Mouse that Roared” especially when she is almost swallowed up by a corrupt international law firm; criminal suits prove as deadly as killers although one abuses the law as a weapon of choice while the other uses a gun. BANGKOK LAWS is a superior thriller that showcases the talent of one of the genre’s better authors.

Harriet Klausner