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British author in Thailand puts Laotian detective fiction on the map

Colin Cotterill's Dr. Siri detective series uses art to get around potentially controversial issues

Colin getting thrown out of Laos. (Courtesy of Colin Cotterill)

CHUMPORN, Thailand Dr. Siri Paiboun was already beyond retirement age when he was appointed state coroner to the morgue in Laos' capital, Vientiane, in 1975, when the Southeast Asian nation officially became the Lao People's Democratic Republic. A dozen books later, Siri is still solving murders, sassing officials, messing with the spirit world and slurping down noodles prepared by his second wife, Madame Daeng.

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