You really don’t know the genius of Jake Needham until you re-read his books. There’s that internal child in his writing which at times can be biting and sarcastic. Just the way I like it. He’s having fun and poking at conventions. The main character of the Inspector Tay and Jack Shepherd series both have their endearing traits. Tay gets hit on more than Shepherd who seems a klutz around women. Actually Tay is a klutz too in the old gentleman way. They are anomalies in Asia.
You don’t need to read 50 Shades of Grey to get that electric energy. The tension is there but it’s always just below the surface and simmering.As Jakes says in his own words, “Too many cheap shit white-guy-in-Asia novels with cringe worthy sex out there already…” And besides Tay and Shepard are professionals and anyone can chase skirt but solving crime takes discipline.
The baddies in each of the series are usually guys but sometimes there’s a women who can play tough guy too. Think The Big Mango and losing her was a loss – no one likes killing off pretty ladies. This book was not part of the Tay or Sheperd series but worthy of a mention for it’s brilliance.
Try the Tay and Shepherd series and enter a real word of subterfuge. You just can’t make this shit up.Jake writes about a world that few writers have dared to tackle. And he gets away with it most of the time. The characters he writes about could come from a Graeme Greene novel. But they don’t. He’s created them himself. In his books, he sometimes revives the characters that we loathe and love at the same time. He’s very judicious about that and as a reader, it just draws you into the story. There’s always something familiar to hang onto and cherish as justice is being dished out Jake Needham style.
Jack Sheperd has been on a sabbatical since The King of Macau and I’m sure he’s getting the taste of another adventure. There’s a lot going on in Asia these days and without Sheperd on the scene, justice may not prevail. But never fear, Inspector Tay is about to make a big comeback since The Dead American. There’s a lot more I could say about Jake Needham’s books, but why, when you can download and discover them yourself here.