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Buddha's Money

Martin Lim?n

116 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 1569473994 / ISBN 13: 9781569473993
Published by Soho Crime, 2005
Used Condition: Good
From Better World Books (Mishawaka, IN, U.S.A.)

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Buddha's Money

Publisher: Soho Crime

Publication Date: 2005

Book Condition:Good

About this title


This grisly, terrifying thriller follows CID Agents George Sueño and Ernie Bascom across the Korean Peninsula in their search for a lost artifact

South Korea, 1970s: Retired Army officer Herman Burkowicz has quite a lucrative setup smuggling rare Korean artifacts. But then his nine-year-old foster daughter, Mi-ja, is abducted, and her kidnappers demand a ransom Burkowicz doesn’t have: a priceless jade skull from the age of Genghis Khan. Sueño and Bascom—more accustomed to chasing felons and black marketeers in the back alleys of Itaewon than ancient treasures—go in over their heads as they agree to search for the skull, a journey that will lead them to a crime that threatens the fragile peace between South Korea and the US Army units living on its Korean soil.


Both Jade Lady Burning and Slicky Boys were praised for their blending of the noir thriller with the police procedural. In Martin Limón's third tale of George Sueno and his army CID partner, Ernie Bascom, the two are enmeshed in the dark and light sides of Buddhism as they again exercise their police skills in a thriller's world. When they come to the aid of a Buddhist nun who is being attacked by what appears to be a GI, Ernie finds himself the keeper of "Buddha's money." He'll need the sacred money as he and George pursue the kidknappers of Mi-ja, the adopted daughter of ex-infantry sergeant, Herman the German. What Herman, Ernie, and George soon discover is that Mi-ja is only the grisly negotiating tool of a man who believes himself the reincarnation of an ancient conqueror. This madman is in relentless pursuit of a jade skull supposed to be the key to the future of the Pacific Rim. A trade--the skull for the girl--seems like the easy solution. But Lady Ahn, the proclaimed heir to the Dragon Throne of China, is not about to give it up.

While this mosaic of Buddhist cults and supernatural relics sounds like the stuff of a 1940s radio drama, it is grounded and modernized in Martin Limón's fascination with his two main characters. In particular, Limón holds a powerful magnet to George Sueno's moral compass, and the consistency in George's voice, as twisted as it is, invites the reader into a world that is teeming with desparate "business girls" and wasted souls. Ernie's penchant for violence and dark humor complements George's cynicism. Gradually, one is moved from fascination to repulsion before settling into a steady enjoyment of an exotic mystery. --Patrick O'Kelley

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