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Publisher's Summary

In 1978 in poverty-stricken Laos, a man from the city with a truck was somebody—a catch for even the prettiest village virgin. The corpse of one of these bucolic beauties turns up in Dr. Siri’s morgue, and his curiosity is piqued. The victim was tied to a tree and strangled, but she had not, as the doctor had expected, been raped. And though the victim had smooth, pale skin over most of her body, her hands and feet were gnarled, callused, and blistered.

On a trip to the hinterlands, Siri discovers that many women have been killed in this way. He sets out to investigate this unprecedented phenomenon—a serial killer in peaceful Buddhist Laos—only to discover, when he has identified the murderer, that not only pretty maidens are at risk: 73-year-old coroners can be victims too.

Crack another case with Dr. Siri.
©2009 Colin Cotterill (P)2011 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

“It is part of Colin Cotterill’s skill that he grips the reader by intercutting between the cerebral deductions of Siri and the determined planning of the killer…Tight plotting and a background full of the sounds and color of the Orient make this a fascinating read.” (Independent (London))

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

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Story

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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Jan
  • United States
  • 07-08-17

Great fun with a sad topic

serial-killer, series, murder-investigation, Laos, historical-fiction, historical-places-events, history-and-culture, sly-humor

Despite my aversion to books that delve into the mind of a serial killer, I still had to give this whodunit 5 stars because it was so diabolically done. I really don't deal in spoilers, so I'm not sure what else I can say, except that it is certainly worth the read.
Clive Chafer continues to be excellent as narrator.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Cynthia
  • Monrovia, California, United States
  • 10-12-14

Marriage from Hell

Most people believe serial killers are an American invention. I mean 'American' in the truest sense: North, Central, and South American. This particular psychopathic subtype may have first been identified, named and popularized by Western psychologists and sociologists, but the archetype existed in the East before the birth of Christ.

Colin Cotterill's "The Merry Misogynist" (2009) explores the idea of a Laotian serial killer. The killer's ability to succeed depends on the killer's innate understanding of Laos; its tribes; and communist bureaucracy in the 1970's. I have no idea if Cotterill's description of the half dozen papers needed to marry were correct at the time, but it certainly sounded plausible.

The country is scarred by war, and recovering slowly. The royal family has fallen, and after half a century of insurgency, the communists are establishing a new government. Resources are so limited that someone driving a truck, even in the capital of Vientiane, must be an important person with contacts and resources.

There's the mystery lover's question: does National Coroner (and the green eyed host of a 1000 year old spirit, Ya Ming) Dr. Siri Paiboun rely on 'deus ex solvo' to uncover the killer? No, of course not. Cotterill's settings are unique, but he follows the mystery writer's convention: the solve depends on solid facts, not the supernatural.

Clive Chafer's narration is great. He has an English? Australian? accent, which made the listen more exotic.

10 of 15 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Much more grim than earlier

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

Yes, though less so than the earlier 5 books in the series. The plot did not thrill me, as the earlier books had.

What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

Predictable

Which character – as performed by Clive Chafer – was your favorite?

Dr. Siri, Sivali, Dtui. I love how Chafer handles them all. He sounds flat, but if you listen closely, there is wonderful nuance to his characterizations.

Did The Merry Misogynist inspire you to do anything?

Write a review

Any additional comments?

I love this series. This book was a bit grim, and the plot less thrilling, but I'm still moving on the next book.

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  • Ron K
  • Miami, Florida, USA
  • 12-11-16

Merry, but not in a Socially Acceptable Way

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I would recommend this book to a friend but I would caution the friend to make time to listen to it. This is not a book that can be listened to while doing something else

What other book might you compare The Merry Misogynist to and why?

I refer to the same author, the book "Thirty-three Teeth." It has the same style as far as sharp, challenging, sarcastic, dry, droll wit.

Have you listened to any of Clive Chafer’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I have only listened to his performances in this series. I don't think I will be able to imagine him as anyone other than Dr. Siri Phaibuon

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Dr. Siri's conversation with Deng in which Deng compared her and Dr. Diri's earlier lives to an undeveloped peanut. Very moving.

Any additional comments?

I liked it enough that I have now purchased five books in the series. I will purchase the other five.

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  • Doug
  • Colorado
  • 07-24-16

Another wonderfully composed masterpiece.

My favorites in every Cotterall book are his precise, acute, comparative descriptions of people, places and circumstances. His characters have all the flaws and quirks that bring each to life so vividly. His stories weave all the mismatched details together with humor and loving care. I can't wait for the next installment.

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  • A User
  • Danville, IN, United States
  • 02-22-16

Love Dr Siri

Colin Cotterill's Dr. Siri books are just the best. One is just as good as the next. These are truly original stories, exotic in location, featuring one of the most lovable protagonists I've encountered in a long while, with dry, wonderful humor and tight, clean writing. And Clive Chafer's voice is perfect. A bit monotone at first, but soon you realize this is exactly the right tone, voice, inflection, and sense of timing that is needed. Do yourself a favor and listen to these wonderful books!

  • Overall
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  • Story

Too far fetched.

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

The beginning was fairly interesting but the end was a complete let down and unbelievable.

Has The Merry Misogynist turned you off from other books in this genre?

No

Which character – as performed by Clive Chafer – was your favorite?

None

Could you see The Merry Misogynist being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

No

Any additional comments?

No