The Dying Beach by Angela Savage
Text Publishing, April 2015
Jayne Keeney book 3
Disclosure: I received a review copy from the publisher.
I’m a big fan of the first book in the Jayne Keeney series, and I really liked this third entry in the series as well. Jayne, an Australian ex-pat who started a PI business after teaching English in Bangkok, is now running an agency with her partner Rajiv, and this particular installment finds them in the Krabi on vacation. when Jayne discovers that her diving tour guide was found drowned at Princess Beach, she convinces Rajiv that they should take up the investigation pro bono, and Rajiv, the business-minded member of the agency, gives her a week.
The structure of the narrative is not traditional in the sense that Savage jumps from character to character and allows us to see quite a lot about the crimes that happen during Jayne’s seven day investigation. The big mystery returns to Pla’s death, the first in the series of crimes that occur. And, of course, the title is a mystery for quite some time as well.
There are lots of parts of the book that appeal to me. First, Jayne is not only just a touch of a bad-ass, she’s also human but not overrun with personality flaws. The environmental advocacy work that runs through this book feels organic, and the investigation of the environmental hazards of economic development are as unsettling as the other violent crimes in the book. The settings are very vivid, and the set pieces at a Buddhist temple fair, the Krabi Snake Farm, and a Buddhist funeral are very vivid. All-around this was a very satisfying read.
Other reviews appear in Whispering Gums and Fair Dinkum Crime.