Berkley, April 2003, 22.95, 256 pp.
Thailand is an exotic place and when William Beauchamp goes there on a buying trip, he sends his wife Natalie a fax saying he is not coming back. Unable to keep the business going and care for her severely handicapped daughter, Natalie sells the store and lives off the profits. Two years later her resources are nearly depleted and Will has gone missing, not seen at his home or store in Bangkok for months. She needs to know if he is alive so she can get a good divorce settlement or dead so she can collect on his insurance.
Lara McClintoch, the owner of an antiques store in Toronto, Canada, is going to Thailand on a buying trip and agrees to look into the matter for Natalie. She learns that Will was working on a book about a vicious killing that happened to an American in the 1950's but no trace of his computer or manuscript is found. She starts asking questions about Will and the missing manuscript that stirs up some people who want certain skeletons (literally) to stay buried.
Lyn Hamilton has written an amateur sleuth tale that shows why visitors are fascinated by Thai culture. The protagonist is like Sherlock Holmes on the hunt and when she picks up the scent she stays with it even if it means making people uncomfortable. THE THAI AMULET is a fascinating tale about greed, treachery, betrayal and murder, and readers won't rest until they find out what happened to Will and why.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner