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Grandad, There's a Head on the Beach: A Jimm Juree Mystery [Hardcover]

Colin Cotterill

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Book Description

June 19 2012
In rural Thailand, former crime reporter Jimm Juree must grapple with her quirky family, a mysterious mother and daughter on the lam and the small matter of a head on the beach
When Jimm Juree’s mother sold the family house and invested in a rundown 'holiday camp' at the southern end of Thailand on the Gulf of Siam, the family had little choice but to follow. Jimm Juree, who was well on her way to achieving her goal of becoming the primary crime reporter for the major daily newspaper in Chiang Mai, is less than thrilled to have lost her job as a reporter and to be stuck in the middle of nowhere where little of interest happens. So it is with mixed feelings that she greets the news that a head has washed up on the beach. It’s tragic, of course, but this could be the sort of sensational murder that would get her a byline in a major daily and keep her toehold on her journalism career. Now all she has to do is find out who was murdered, and why.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 324 pages
  • Publisher: Minotaur Books (June 19 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312564546
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312564544
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 14.8 x 2.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 340 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #264,149 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


"Cotterill effortlessly merges murder and mirth.... Impressively, the author manages to insert a serious human rights problem amid the larking around without hitting a false note, and is on track to duplicate the acclaim and commercial success of his Dr. Siri series."
Publishers Weekly

"Definitely puts the fun in family dysfunction. Jimm, an Asian Stephanie Plum, rattles steadily to a solution, with many hilarious episodes along the way."
Kirkus Reviews

"The author's natural gift for irony ... is to be relished."
Library Journal

“Cotterill masterfully blends real-world issues . . . with appealing cozy elements and his trademark humor. Series readers will be thrilled with this installment and anxious for the next one.”

“The best beach title around.”
New York Times

About the Author

Born in London, COLIN COTTERILL has worked as teacher in Israel, Australia, the U.S. and Japan before he started training teachers in Thailand. Cotterill and his wife live in a small fishing village on the Gulf of Siam in Southern Thailand. He has won the Dilys and a CWA Dagger and has been a finalist for several other awards.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.1 out of 5 stars  29 reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Thai fire drill July 21 2012
By Blue in Washington - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Much as I like Colin Cotterill's books, I think ""Grandad..." is a bit over-the-top demented to please all readers. The story line incorporates a hugely serious subject--the abuse, enslavement and killing of Burmese refugees--with the slapstick escapades of protagonist Jimm Jurree's family and circle. It becomes inappropriate in feeling when it should be most interesting. There's also a frenetic pace to the story and especially to the dialogue that is hard to keep up with and, at times, just plain excessive. Still, it has a cast of very original and sometimes hilarious characters that you can't help liking.

The book is basically a continuation of the lives of Jimm Jurree and family in a southern Thailand backwater where they are trying to manage a sinking resort hotel. This episode provides some clue as to what brought them down from a comfortable middle-class life in the north and, of course, focuses on the plight of the Burmese refugees living in the area.

This novel could have used some tightening and adjustment of the tone so that the terrible things happening to the Burmese didn't become trivialized. The story's weaknesses won't keep me from looking forward to Mr. Cotterill's next book however. He's a fine writer who know how to spin an entertaining story.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars wacky delight June 27 2012
By Donald E. Gilliland - Published on Amazon.com
This is the second in the recently launched Jimm Juree mystery series by Colin Cotterill, and I thought it was even better than the first installment. By now, the reader is familiar with Jimm (a female Thai journalist, now "wasting away" at her family's tiny beach resort in South Thailand), her timid body-builder brother, her Internet savvy transexual sibling, her unpredictable mother, her feisty grandfather, and her flamboyant police officer friend. Throw in a cast of other old and new acquaintences, and you have a thoroughly bizarre cast of characters to keep up with. More than any previous Cotterill book, including his beloved Dr. Seri series of Laos novels, the shenanigans in this novel get so wild, and the characters are so demented, that it borders on Carl Hiaasen territory. Yes, it's that weird. But Cotterill also throws in an interesting --- and important --- human rights angle in this novel to keep things sober, that being the plight of Burmese refugees who are forced to work on Thai fishing boats with little or no pay ... and are sometimes never seen again. As Cotterill explains in the book's afterward, this is indeed a real and frightening occurrence, not something made up for the purposes of the book's plot. As to the wacky element in this story, we can't forget the most powerful element: karaoke! Yes, once again the potent potential of karaoke --- in the form of inebriated boat captains with a penchant for singing Abba songs --- saves the day! This is a funny, heartwarming, sad, and thoroughly enjoyable read. The only thing that puzzled me was the fact that the "head on the beach" mystery was never fully resolved at the end of the book, at least not to my satisfaction. But ultimately, that's nitpicking. Fans of Cotterill's other books should enjoy this one also.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jimm Juree is Irresistible. May 10 2013
By Marilyn Hay - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I love Cotterill's skill in creating three dimensional quirky, sympathetic characters that you fast learn to care about and enjoy. Jimm is smart and savvy, can't resist a mystery and, at her core, is immensely kind. The setting of southeast Asia brings a different flavour and perspective, showing us we have more in common with folks on the far side of the world than we might otherwise realize. Highly recommend this series.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I want to hug JImm Juree May 2 2013
By JBK - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The Jimm Juree books are more about life in rural Thailand than murder, but the murders turn out to be great backdrops for telling stories about family, life in a culture that I have never experienced in a place that despite the author's portrayal as a place not even locals enjoy, I want to visit. Jimm's family and friends are entertaining and outrageous, and totally believable (perhaps because I know nothing about the culture), and their antics are hilarious. The title makes the story sound outrageous, but it's very consistent with past Jimm stories, and it pulled me in. A very funny story, a great read and an educational experience, with a murder mystery thrown in. Can't beat it!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars another great book March 19 2013
By E. Emel Ertas - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Great detective story set in Thailand. Great cast of characters: a thai female ex-reporter turned into amateur detective after having forced to moved down to south of Thailand with family: A grandfather who is a retiree from police force, a recluse sister who lives in Chiang Mai, who was a brother but now a computer hacker, a brother who is into body building, and a one of a kind crazy mother. Fabulous fun!

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