An acupuncturist as a detective? That sounds a bit strange, but when he's a Tai Chi expert and as witty and wisecracking as Elvis Cole and Spenser you might start to understand Randall Lee can be a Son of Spade.
Asked to help as a translator with the murder investigation of a Chinese masseuse Randall gets way to involved, being forced to take on a master of the martial arts.
Lee has an interesting backstory, full of darkness and pain that make him a tragic protagonist. He keeps himself alive with booze, his work and his attitude. When he falls in love he is forced to show his real, tender self.
What makes this book so great is how ''real'' the scenes between Lee and his wonderfully attractive girlfriend are. You really start to identify early with Randall in a way that surpasses even the way I used to identify with Jonathan Kellerman's Alex Delaware. He's also a lot tougher by the way.
The mystery is okay, the martial arts action great, the dialogue fantastic. One of my favorite reads of the year.