The Rat Catchers’ Olympics (A Dr. Siri Paiboun Mystery Book 12)


Colin Cotterill

The 1980 Olympic Games in Moscow is already rife with controversy, but when a Lao athlete is accused of murder, it escalates into a full blown international incident. In the twelfth entry to the series, Dr. Siri Paiboun and his quirky team of misfits are on the case in a city and country foreign to them, yet familiar in its corruption of justice. 

1980: The People’s Democratic Republic of Laos is proud to be competing in its first-ever Olympics. Of course, half the world is boycotting the Moscow Summer Olympic Games to protest the Soviet Union’s recent invasion of Afghanistan, but that has made room for athletes from countries that are usually too small or underfunded to be competitive—like Laos.

Ex-national coroner of Laos Dr. Siri Paiboun may be retired, but he and his wife, Madame Daeng, would do just about anything to have a chance to visit Moscow, so Siri finagles them a trip by getting them hired as medical advisers to the Olympians. Most of the athletes are young and innocent village people who have never worn running shoes, much less imagined anything as marvelous as the Moscow Olympic Village. As the competition heats up, however, Siri begins to suspect that one of the athletes is not who he says he is. Fearing a conspiracy, Siri and his friends investigate, liaising in secret with Inspector Phosy back home in Laos to see if the man might be an assassin. Siri’s progress is derailed when a Lao Olympian is accused of murder. Now in the midst of a murky international incident, Dr. Siri must navigate not one but two paranoid government machines to make sure justice is done.

Reviews:Bookworm on Amazon wrote:

One of the best of the series! I loved the setting around the 1980 Olympics. Siri, Civilai, Phosy, and the whole gang were in top form. As always, the dialogue was hilarious, the characterization was so brilliant I felt as if I was right there in the Olympic village, and the mystery itself was brilliant and kept me guessing.

I very highly recommend this series if you love a good mystery with excellent writing, setting, a bit of history and culture, and not a lot of gratuitous violence. It's important to read them in order, though, so you can fully appreciate each character's personality.

Calzean on Goodreads wrote:

Probably one of the better books in this series, probably made interesting by having Dr Siri and co. attend the Moscow Olympics of 1980 allowing the author to add a few more storylines relative to that period. The humour also seemed less forced and the flicking between the investigations in Russia and back in Laos worked well. The silliness still works well especially when the rat catchers of three countries decided to see who is the best at their job.

How well did this book represent Down syndrome?

Click on a star to rate it!

Average rating 0 / 5. Vote count: 0

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this book.

Posted in

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.