A return to the goofy Southeast Asian kingdom of Luong (Pigeon Blood), where Bamsan Kiet, the police superintendant, tries to buy some shrimp and is informed by the fishmonger that his zin is counterfeit. Kiet and his westernized adjutant Birth then discover: that the up-for-reelection mayor is changing vast sums every day; that Freddie Pogur, a free-lance entrepreneurer, is in town misbehaving himself; that Buzz Wheeler, shady purveyor of almost everything, owns a photocopier--only now he's dead. His body disappears, as does the photocopier; and via thinking machinations too complex and sidesplitting for mere non-Luongans to attempt, it's apparent that Kiet's former nemesis Marshal Ref, banished to the notorious Foh Ten district (which he now rules † la the Godfather), is involved. And so is the Russian ambassador, but in a small-time way. Several steamy Luongan afternoons later (not to mention a blissful time or two that Kiet spends with a disciple of the Church of the Amalgamation of Enlightenment, Ref finally gets what he deserves, the zin is stabilized, and Prince Pakse racks the billiards in peace. As charming as its predecessor, though somewhat less amusing.