Monday, March 25, 2013

The Red Pole of Macau & The Scottish Banker of Surabaya

Ian Hamilton's popular Ava Lee Series now includes five books. Here, Elizabeth Dent offers an opinion on Hamilton's two latest additions.

Ian Hamilton

The fourth book in Ian Hamilton’s Ava Lee series, The Red Pole of Macau, more than lives up to the rest of the series. The heroine, Ava Lee, finds herself with unexpected family commitments when she is obliged to use her skills as an international debt collector to assist her half-brother Michael. While helping her brother pull out of a troubled international real-estate deal seems simple at first, things go horribly wrong. This time it is not only Ava’s life that is at risk.

A fascinating international excursion, this book takes you from Toronto to Hong Kong and Macau and gives you the action of a spy novel, the intelligence of international business banking, and the interest of watching Ava and Michael manage their complicated private lives. The Red Pole of Macau is an excellent read.

The Scottish Banker of Surabaya
Ian Hamilton

The fifth book in the Ava Lee series by Canadian author Ian Hamilton, The Scottish Banker of Surabaya continues where his previous book, The Red Pole of Macau, left off. Ava Lee, the Chinese-Canadian international debt collector, is recovering from the adventures she underwent in Hamilton’s previous book and is developing a closer relationship with her mother. Of course no good deed goes unpunished, as Ava’s mother promises a friend that Ava will help her to recover some lost money. Helping one friend turns into helping a whole group of Vietnamese people in the grip of what appears to be a Ponzi scheme. Information is sparse and Ava must get her partner, Uncle, to assist her with access to help from Hong Kong to Indonesia.

This thriller is full of international intrigue, guns, planes, and automobiles, but the true humanity of the protagonist gives a new depth to this novel. The realities of Ava’s sexual identity, her loves, and her losses bring a more human side to this character, whereas her martial arts training and marksmanship were more predominant in previous novels. A great read and a fascinating series that will certainly keep you entertained.

- Liz Dent

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