“Heart-rending . . . Even fans accustomed to Hallinan’s lurid, compassionate view of Bangkok may have to fight back tears.”

—Kirkus Reviews

GOODBYE TO ALL THAT

A sad farewell.

On April 28, the final Poke Rafferty novel, STREET MUSIC, went on sale in ebook format at the usual online bookstores. Production and distribution of the hard-cover version—the most beautiful book that’s ever had my name on it—will follow “soon,” having fallen victim to the global virus that ignored the prediction that “One day, it’s like a miracle, it will disappear.” Hasn’t been quite enough like a miracle for me. Anyway, the hard cover will be available soon.

The decision to end the series is mine. As much as I love these characters and their Bangkok environment, tempus is fugiting at an alarming rate, and there are new characters and worlds I’d like to explore before I’m forced to turn in my keyboard.

In 2006, I opened the first book in the series, A NAIL THROUGH THE HEART, with a scene in which an American travel writer holds his adopted daughter’s hand as they follow his wife down a Bangkok sidewalk, shopping for groceries. I knew that it wasn’t the most electrifying opening in thriller history, but I wanted to say on the very first page that this was not a novel about Bangkok in which beautiful young Asian women threw themselves incessantly at uninteresting white men. My line of thought was something like wife+daughter+groceries=family.

The word family did the trick. I barely knew who these people were, but the moment I realized they were a family, I thought that it might be interesting to drop a normal—if intercultural and self-assembled—family into the world capital of instant gratification. It felt to me like the family might serve as a friendly campfire in a world of cold neon. And, for me, at least, it’s worked out.

I’ve put my little famly through a lot in nine books, and they’ve put me through a lot. I already miss them. But I do hope you’ll like STREET MUSIC.

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