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Blood Jungle Ballet A disquieting string of murders terrorizes the remote, lush island of Samoa Detective Sergeant Apelu Soifua has seen a lot in his time with the police force, but even he is unsettled by the bodies that have started piling up At first, the murders don t seem connected a local transvestite found castrated and brutalized, a visiting politician who drops dead on the dance floor, a prison guard and an inmate who kill each other but as Apelu works with the hospital s new medical examiner to find out who is behind the killings, a disturbing pattern emerges And the closer they get to the killer, the destructive he becomes Can they put the pieces together before Apelu becomes the next victim I ve read the first one in the series and always thought that I would end up reading another one, as I enjoyed the description of Samoan culture from the point of view of a policeman who also has some familiarity with American West Coast culture This is the fourth in the series and it has an end of series feel to it, as Apelu prepares for retirement on his plantation by the end.What I really enjoyed about this book is that it runs on Samoan time the whole investigation takes place over 2 ye I ve read the first one in the series and always thought that I would end up reading another one, as I enjoyed the description of Samoan culture from the point of view of a policeman who also has some familiarity with American West Coast culture This is the fourth in the series and it has an end of series feel to it, as Apelu prepares for retirement on his plantation by the end.What I really enjoyed about this book is that it runs on Samoan time the whole investigation takes place over 2 years, which is farrealistic for a serial killer pattern to emerge Although the idea of a serial killer on such a small island is a bit preposterous.The characters and the interactions are very well written, although the plot did feel a bit predictable There was a LOT of foreshadowing, to the point where I did at times feel like shouting Get on with the actual thing already And it feels muchserious, elegiac almost, as external events the war in Iraq, Christian missionaries affect island life A mourning for lost paradise while still acknowledging that the paradise was illusory Although this one probably would work as a stand alone, I d suggest reading the series in order for continuity in Apelu s circumstances.I ve read all four books no real spoiler that one s intended as a series conclusion , and while I don t recall the details of the other three specifically, I retain an impression that the first two were strong on plot and setting, while the third was weaker, focusing on Apelu as a character This one had a suspenseful plot, with a denouement I didn t see coming Although this one probably would work as a stand alone, I d suggest reading the series in order for continuity in Apelu s circumstances.I ve read all four books no real spoiler that one s intended as a series conclusion , and while I don t recall the details of the other three specifically, I retain an impression that the first two were strong on plot and setting, while the third was weaker, focusing on Apelu as a character This one had a suspenseful plot, with a denouement I didn t see coming at all, although I was disappointed that setting seemed to play less of a part as the story went on Doctor Laura was a terrific complement to Apelu as a secondary investigator, along with Officer Frost who becomes a prot g of his His girlfriend, Avelisa, seemed rather unstable, shall we say however, she s quite the change from his estranged, religious, frankly frumpy wife I wasn t real thrilled with the plot angle regarding their baby, especially the graphic details of her conception Strange thing is that even though the pregnancy and events afterward are covered, it didn t feel as though two years had passed no jumping around as such Series recommend for its unique Samoan background, and overall plotting Phil Gigante s narration is one of those he was made to read this fits This was the first book in this series that I have read To be honest, I didn t realise it was a series until I wrote this review and saw howhas it listed It certainly reads like a stand alone novel and I don t remember any callbacks or allusions to previous storylines A very slow paced Heart of Darkness A man s struggle to find his identity in a changing landscape A search for a killer All these plot elements form together seamlessly Albeit, somewhat lazily There is no quickened This was the first book in this series that I have read To be honest, I didn t realise it was a series until I wrote this review and saw howhas it listed It certainly reads like a stand alone novel and I don t remember any callbacks or allusions to previous storylines A very slow paced Heart of Darkness A man s struggle to find his identity in a changing landscape A search for a killer All these plot elements form together seamlessly Albeit, somewhat lazily There is no quickened pace, no heightened heart rate, this is a molasses slow plodding tale that leads to a likely conclusion Along the way, there are an interesting cast of characters, which in my opinion, makes the story readable The mystery itself seems an afterthought, there is no drive to really discover the murderer In fact, the truth is uncovered only through vendettas and a desire to end a career Some plot lines that seem promising fizzle, others just fade away with no conclusion I was left wanting so muchfrom this book Again, the characters and the setting are so well drawn out that you are immersed in Samoan culture Like a beautiful drive through the country only to end at a blank concrete wall I don t know if this is the final book about Apelu and his kin, but if it is, it will be a great wat to end the series A tale about morality and mortality, the story flows and draws the reader in Almost perfect.

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