|Death in the Rainy Season|
Phnom Penh, Cambodia; the rainy season. When a French man, Hugo Quercy, is found brutally murdered, Commandant Serge Morel finds his holiday drawn to an abrupt halt. Quercy - dynamic, well-connected - was the magnetic head of a humanitarian organisation which looked after the area's neglected youth. Opening his investigation, the Parisian detective soon finds himself buried in one of his most challenging cases yet. Morel must navigate this complex and politically sensitive crime in a country with few forensic resources, and armed with little more than a series of perplexing questions: what was Quercy doing in a hotel room under a false name? What is the significance of his recent investigations into land grabs in the area? And who could have broken into his home the night of the murder? Becoming increasingly drawn into Quercy's circle of family and friends - his adoring widow, his devoted friends and bereft colleagues - Commandant Morel will soon discover that in this lush land of great beauty and immense darkness, nothing is quite as it seems ...A deeply atmospheric crime novel that bristles with truth and deception, secrets and lies: Death in the Rainy Season is a compelling mystery that unravels an exquisitely wrought human tragedy.
Another of these "second book in a series" reviews, and I've got to admit that my heart sank a little when I realised this. Having said that, aside from a couple of hints at loose threads which were being picked up and carried along during the book (mostly to do with Morel's family history) it wasn't that obvious that this was a series and it works pretty well as a standalone book.
I did find myself getting quite heavily invested in the book by the time I was a third or so through it - I was trying to figure out the connection between the killer and various other oddities to do with the charity's set up and apparently random events.
A good read, a compelling murder mystery and a decent protagonist with some hidden skeletons; it's a series I'll be reading more of, I should think.