Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.


No title (2004)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1,078817,745 (3.86)452

Work details

The Coroner's Lunch by Colin Cotterill (2004)

  1. 52
    The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith (heidialice)
  2. 00
    Fierce Invalids Home from Hot Climates by Tom Robbins (Littlemissbashful)
    Littlemissbashful: Eccentric characters, mystical goings on, wily old folk and wry humour with intriguing plot points.

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 452 mentions

English (77)  Swedish (1)  Dutch (1)  German (1)  French (1)  All languages (81)
Showing 1-5 of 77 (next | show all)
Dr Siri Paiboun, a 72-year-old coroner, gets caught up in two different murder investigations. Set in Communist Laos in 1976, there's plenty of diplomatic intrigue as a backdrop. In one case, three men are found dead under suspicious circumstances involving the Vietnamese government. In the other case, a Laotian official's wife dies and his mistress commits suicide: what's up with that? I found some parts of the story a bit hard to believe, but enjoyed getting to know Dr Siri, a delightful amateur detective who consistently outsmarts the officials. I am not completely hooked on this series yet, but I have the next book on my Kindle so will read at least one more. ( )
  lauralkeet | Jun 27, 2015 |
Why do I love amateur detectives in mystery novels that thumb their noses at authorities so much? OK, I'll admit to being somewhat rhetorical. The point is: Yes, I do! Dr. Siri—imagining that the narrator pronounces his name as 'silly' is even more fun—treats the newly minted Communist government of 1975 Laos with common-sense and irreverence. How else is a 72-year-old, long-time physician, but recently retrained pathologist, going to respond to an over-zealous, young upstart who is a judge after receiving the equivalent of a match-book, law degree? This book is well worth the read. ( )
  bsiemens | Jun 1, 2015 |
I know that many of you are fans of Colin Cotterill's Dr. Siri mystery series, and I can see why. This first book in the series introduces us to Dr. Siri, a 72-year-old coroner in Laos. Set just after the 1975 Communist takeover, we learn a lot about this transition. While there were a couple of mysteries running through this book, what I enjoyed most was getting to know Dr. Siri and being dropped into his world. Dr. Siri is clever, and I loved him from the beginning. I love his style of building understanding and solving mysteries, as well as his cutting insights about the shift to Communism. This one worked well on audio, read by Clive Chafer. ( )
  porch_reader | Mar 12, 2015 |

I finished it...all I can say is it was "ok". I had high hopes for this book that follows a doctor, in his 70's, who is thrown into a job as coroner in newly communist Laos. It's a time and place that I know very littl about, and still do, as it happens. I didn't really connect with any of the characters on anything but the most superficial of levels and didn't really give a shit what happened in the book at all. Mildly entertaining but devoid of anything memorable. I won't be reading more in this series. ( )
  tnociti | Mar 7, 2015 |
Communist since 1975, Laos, the setting of Cotterill's book, is a country of which I know little but hope to learn more through this series. I loved the beautifully developed characters, especially the kind, tender, considerate Dr Sirl Palboun and his gentle humour. I look forward to reading more of his "cases". This was an interesting mystery with characters, methods and even the crime, so different from the usual fare. Highly recommended. ( )
  VivienneR | Dec 8, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 77 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review

» Add other authors (12 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Colin Cotterillprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Abelsen, PeterTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Amezawa, YasushiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Diari, MatteoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Malfoy, ValérieTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mohr, ThomasTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
With the kindest thanks and lots of love to the following folks: Pornsawan, Bouasawan, Chantavone, Sounieng, Ketkaew, Dr Pongruk, Bounlan, Don, Souk, Soun, Michael and his secretary, Somdee, David L., Nok, Dtee, Siri, Yayoi and Steph.
First words
Tran, Tran, and Hok broke through the heavy end-of-wet-season clouds.
Most of the results from Siri’s morgue relied on archaic color tests: combinations of chemicals or litmus samples. These were more suitable for telling what wasn’t, rather than what was.
We, my children, are no longer common coroners. We are investigators of death.
He couldn’t imagine why old men would chase new-hatched chicks when there were pretty hens in the yard.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
Haiku summary

No descriptions found.

The Communist Pathet Lao has taken over this former French colony. Most of the educated class has fled, but Dr. Siri Paiboun, a Paris-trained doctor whose late wife had been an ardent Communist, remains. And so this 72-year-old physician is appointed state coroner, despite the fact that he has no training or even supplies to use in performing his new task. What he does have is curiosity and integrity. At his age he is not about to let a bunch of ignorant bureaucrats dictate to him. One of his first cases involves three bodies recovered from a reservoir, but Dr. Siri establishes that the cause of death was not drowning. These men seem to have been electrocuted, perhaps tortured, and they also seem to be Vietnamese, which could have international repercussions. And then there is the inexplicable death of a Party bigwig's equally important wife. She collapsed and died at a banquet. But Dr. Siri doesn't think her death was from natural causes. In the course of his investigations, Dr. Siri must travel to his birthplace, a Hmong village he has not visited for more than 60 years, where he makes a profound discovery, not only about the motive for several murders, but about himself.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 5 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
5 avail.
47 wanted
5 pay8 pay

Popular covers


Average: (3.86)
1 4
2 11
2.5 6
3 77
3.5 50
4 173
4.5 26
5 73


An edition of this book was published by Audible.com.

See editions

Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

» Publisher information page

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Store | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 99,080,676 books! | Top bar: Always visible