Bits of humor in Breathing Water
And this, about a quarter of the way into the book:
"You were–" He turns to Dr. Ravi and says, in English, "I don't know the Thai. Tell him he was appalling."Or this:
"I think ... " Dr. Ravi swallows. "I think he's already gotten that message."
"A bodyguard can level with him and you can't? What kind of amanuensis are you?"
"I'm not an amanuensis. I'm his media director."
"Goddamn it," Pan says in heavily accented English. "Speak Thai. Or translate."
"The activity had the unfortunate effect of making him look even more like a monkey, one who is on the verge of inventing a tool but probably won't."That sentence could do without "had the unfortunate effect of," and for all I know, it may be changed before the book goes to press. But this matters little because the passage is a gorgeous description of a big, dumb, powerful thug. And that matters. The big, dumb, powerful thug is a crime-fiction staple, and Hallinan makes it fresh. Breathing Water is a pleasure to read.
© Peter Rozovsky 2009