A suave writer’s attempts at détente with his oversexed ex get him into all kinds of trouble.
After a crowded flight to Jakarta, Hong Kong–based investigative journalist and inveterate ladies’ man Ray Sharp is diving into an icy vodka when he’s accosted by his estranged wife, Sylvia, who has two items on her agenda. First she asks flirtatiously for a divorce—a relief to Ray, who walked out on her. Then she solicits his help in finding her missing fiancé Alex Truscott, the playboy son of a wealthy Texas oilman. Since her request dovetails nicely with Ray’s reporting assignment in Jakarta to check out the proposed hookup of a Hong Kong bank and an oil company called Motex, he agrees to do what he can. Neither agreement prevents him from rolling in the sheets with Annie the barmaid. Many other past or would-be lovers, including Annie’s gay roommate Billy, also float through the story as diversions, temptations and informants. Chases and narrow escapes figure prominently in the saga. The closer Ray gets to Motex’s inner circle, the more secrecy and threats he encounters, convincing him that he’s on the right track, especially when he learns that Alex faced dismissal or worse at the time of his disappearance.
Though Ray’s extracurricular activities often overshadow his adventure, his third outing (Grave Imports, 2007, etc.), written with panache and attention to evocative detail, recalls at its best the work of Ian Fleming.