Robert Chow is a Vietnam vet and an alcoholic. He’s also the only Chinese American cop on the Chinatown beat, and the only police officer who can speak Cantonese. But he’s basically treated like a token, trotted out for ribbon cuttings and community events.
So he shouldn’t be surprised when his superiors are indifferent to his suspicions that an old Chinese woman’s death may have actually been a murder. But he sure is angry. With little more than his own demons to fuel him, Chow must take matters into his own hands.
Rich with the details of its time and place, this homage to noir will appeal to fans of S.J. Rozan and Michael Connelly.
Ed Lin, a native New Yorker of Taiwanese and Chinese descent, is the first author to win three Asian American Literary Awards and is an all-around standup kinda guy. His books include Waylaid and This Is a Bust, both published by Kaya Press in 2002 and 2007, respectively. Snakes Can’t Run and One Red Bastard, which both continue the story of Robert Chow set in This Is a Bust, were published by Minotaur Books. His latest book, Ghost Month, a Taipei-based mystery, was published by Soho Crime in July 2014. Lin lives in Brooklyn with his wife, actress Cindy Cheung, and son. www.edlinforpresident.com
Set in New York City in 1976, Snakes Can’t Run finds NYPD detective Robert Chow still haunted by the horrors of his past and relegated to tedious undercover work.
When the bodies of two undocumented Chinese men are found under the Brooklyn Bridge underpass, Chow is drawn into the case.
Most of the officers in his precinct are concerned with a terrorist group targeting the police, but Chow’s investigation puts him on the trail of a ring of ruthless human smugglers who call themselves the snakeheads.
As Chow gets closer to solving the murder, dangerous truths about his own family’s past begin to emerge.
Steeped in retro urban attitude, and ripe with commentary on minorities’ roles in American society, this gritty procedural will appeal to fans of George Pelecanos and S.J. Rozan.
It’s the fall of 1976, and New York’s Chinatown is in turmoil over news that Mao’s daughter is seeking asylum in America. Vietnam vet Robert Chow is now a detective-in-training, and he is thrilled when his girlfriend, Lonnie, scores a once-in-a-lifetime interview with the Chinese representative of Mao’s daughter. But hours after their meeting, the man is found dead.
Lonnie, the last person to see him alive, is the main suspect. The police are restless to close the case, and as Lonnie is subjected to increasing amounts of intimidation, Robert is tempted to reach into his own bag of dirty tricks to protect her.
Will Chow stay on the right side of the law, or will his loyalty to Lonnie provoke him to turn to darker methods? Find out in this exciting and fast-paced mystery, set in one of New York’s most fascinating neighborhoods . . .