The Thousand Crimes of Ming Tsu

Tom Lin. Little, Brown, $28 (288p) ISBN 978-0-316-54215-9
Lin’s disappointing debut opens in post-Civil War Utah, where the title character has just killed Judah Ambrose, a former labor recruiter for the Central Pacific Railroad. Ambrose was one of four men on Ming’s hit list, and it gradually emerges that Ming and his white wife, Ada, eloped years ago after her businessman father objected to their relationship. But after just two months, her father arranged to have Ming beaten and charged with miscegenation; his punishment was a decade of hard labor laying rails for the Central Pacific in the desert. Ming is now searching for Ada, whom he believes is in California, and the men who mistreated him. At one point, he hooks up with a circus troupe whose company includes people with magical powers, but this supernatural twist adds little. Evocative prose makes up only in part for a predictable revenge plotline and stock characters. Those with a taste for gory westerns may be satisfied. Agent: Lisa Queen, Queen Literary Agency. (June)
Reviewed on : 03/25/2021
Release date: 06/01/2021
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
Compact Disc - 978-1-5491-3846-1
Compact Disc - 978-1-5491-3848-5
Paperback - 288 pages - 978-0-316-54214-2
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