About the Author

Ian Hamilton

Ian Hamilton is the author of seven novels in the Ava Lee series: The Dragon Head of Hong Kong: The Ava Lee Prequel, The Water Rat of Wanchai, The Disciple of Las Vegas, The Wild Beasts of Wuhan, The Red Pole of Macau, The Scottish Banker of Surabaya, and The Two Sisters of Borneo. The Water Rat of Wanchai was the winner of the Arthur Ellis Award for Best First Novel, an Amazon.ca Top 100 Book of the Year, an Amazon.ca Top 100 Editors’ Pick, an Amazon.ca Canadian Pick, an Amazon.ca Mysteries and Thrillers Pick, a Toronto Star Top 5 Fiction Book of the Year, and a Quill & Quire Top 5 Fiction Book of the Year.

Books by this Author
Fate

Fate

An Uncle Chow Tung Novel
edition:Paperback
also available: eBook
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Foresight

Foresight

The Lost Decades of Uncle Chow Tung
edition:Paperback
also available: eBook
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The Ava Lee Series Bundle 1

The Ava Lee Series Bundle 1

The Water Rat of Wanchai: Book 1, The Disciple of Las Vegas: Book 2, and The Dragon Head of Hong Kong: The Ava Lee Prequel
edition:eBook
tagged : women sleuths
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The Ava Lee Series Bundle 2

The Ava Lee Series Bundle 2

The Wild Beasts of Wuhan: Book 3, The Red Pole of Macau: Book 4, The Scottish Banker of Surabaya: Book 5, The Two Sisters of Borneo: Book 6
edition:eBook
tagged : women sleuths
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The Ava Lee Series Bundle 3

The Ava Lee Series Bundle 3

The King of Shanghai: Book 7, The Princeling of Nanjing: Book 8, The Couturier of Milan: Book 9
edition:eBook
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The Ava Lee Series Bundle 4

The Ava Lee Series Bundle 4

The Imam of Tawi-Tawi: Book 10, The Goddess of Yantai: Book 11, The Mountain Master of Sha Tin: Book 12
edition:eBook
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The Couturier of Milan

The Couturier of Milan

The Triad Years: An Ava Lee Novel
edition:Paperback
also available: Paperback eBook
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The Diamond Queen of Singapore

The Diamond Queen of Singapore

An Ava Lee Novel: The Triad Years
edition:Paperback
also available: eBook
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The Disciple of Las Vegas

The Disciple of Las Vegas

An Ava Lee Novel
edition:Paperback
also available: eBook
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The Dragon Head King of Hong Kong

The Dragon Head King of Hong Kong

The Ava Lee Prequel
edition:eBook
also available: Hardcover
tagged : women sleuths
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The Dragon Head of Hong Kong

The Dragon Head of Hong Kong

The Ava Lee Prequel Limited Edition
edition:Hardcover
also available: eBook
tagged : women sleuths
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The Imam of Tawi-Tawi
Excerpt

“What is this potential problem?” Ava said.

Chang hesitated. She thought she heard ice clinking in a glass and wondered if he was drinking. “Ava, I would like that explanation to take place in Manila,” he said. “I know this will sound vague and maybe even conspiratorial, but I’m not comfortable explaining it to you over the phone. First, it’s very complicated, and I’m not as well informed as some other people I’d like you to talk to. Second, this isn’t something that can be explained in half an hour, or even several hours. I believe you should meet and take the measure of the people who’ve related at least part of their suspicions to us.”

“And you have no one in the Philippines you can turn to?”

“Absolutely not. As I said, this is about trust, and the number of people who Tommy and I truly trust we can count on one hand. Of those, only one lives in Manila, and he’s the first person we want you to talk to.”

“Uncle, I really don’t know what to say. I have other responsibilities now.”

“Give us one day,” he said quickly. “Get on a plane tomorrow and come to Manila for one meeting. If you decide to go back to Toronto or Hong Kong or wherever after that, the issue will never be mentioned again and we’ll still be grateful for your time.”

“I’m expected in Shanghai tomorrow for a business review that’s scheduled to last several days.”

“Postpone it,” Chang said. “Please, Ava.”

The word please startled her. It wasn’t something she could remember Chang or Tommy Ordonez ever uttering. Not only was it out of character, in her mind it was an acknowledgement that she was their equal.

“I can’t give you an answer this minute,” she said. “I have to think about it, and I also want to talk to my partners and the people expecting me in Shanghai.”

“Of course, do that,” he said. “But there is urgency to this matter. Waiting four days to talk to you wasn’t easy — more than once I reached for the phone. Can you possibly speak to them tonight?”

“Yes, I can, and I’ll call you when I have.”

“I’ll stay up until I hear from you,” he said.

“Uncle, you do understand this doesn’t mean I’m leaning towards saying yes?”

“Please, give us that one day, Ava,” Chang said. “My belief is that if you do, you’ll commit to helping us get to the bottom of this problem.”

He’s dangling bait, she thought. She admired how skillfully he had handled his end of the conversation: He had started it by invoking their connection through Uncle. Then he’d complimented her while insisting that he thought she was above flattery. Finally, he had framed his request as a personal favour. She didn’t know why he thought he had the right to ask for one, since he and Ava were hardly friends, but he had anyway and it had been exactly the right approach. Indeed, it was probably the only approach that had a chance of succeeding with her.

“Let me make some calls,” she said.

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The King of Shanghai

The King of Shanghai

The Triad Years
edition:Paperback
also available: eBook
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The Princeling of Nanjing

The Princeling of Nanjing

The Triad Years
edition:Paperback
also available: eBook
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The Scottish Banker of Surabaya

The Scottish Banker of Surabaya

An Ava Lee Novel
edition:Paperback
also available: eBook
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