Tyger! Tyger!

Tyger! Tyger!

by Richard Hoyt
     
 

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In the forests of the world, the mighty tiger is disappearing. A symbol of virility and power, its bones are a principal ingredient in traditional homeopathic medicines-and worth hundreds of dollars per pound on the Asian black market. The latest threat to these magnificent creatures is a well-organized profiteering ring that is trying to corner the market on tiger

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Overview

In the forests of the world, the mighty tiger is disappearing. A symbol of virility and power, its bones are a principal ingredient in traditional homeopathic medicines-and worth hundreds of dollars per pound on the Asian black market. The latest threat to these magnificent creatures is a well-organized profiteering ring that is trying to corner the market on tiger parts by systematically exterminating all wild tigers.

Western diplomatic efforts and economic sanctions have failed laughably against simple human greed and indifference. Bribery and corruption are rampant, leaving CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species) desperately fighting for a lost cause.

But when the law falls short of justice, there are men like James Burlane, of Mixed Enterprises, a former CIA agent who specializes in delicate international cases. Following leads from Germany all the way to the Philippines, Burlane finds he is not just up against poachers. A killer of women stalks the night, with a twisted fire in his eyes, sensuously painting his naked victims in the buff-orange and luscious black stripes of the tiger before his dread hand seizes the knife.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A pleasure to read....Hoyt offers a fascinating guided tour of the Asian black market in bones and other parts of endangered species." -The Washington Post

"[Tyger! Tyger!] divides the world into predators and prey, into those who eat and those who go hungry. The raffish story pricks our consciences about issues for which there may be no solution but compassion-and curbing our appetites." -Portland Oregonian

Washington Post
Hoyt [has] a healthy respect for the complexities of saving endangered animals. He's also a pleasure to read and in Tyger! Tyger! Hoyt offers a fascinating tour of the Asian black market in bones and other parts of endangered species.
Portland Oregonian
[Tyger! Tyger!] divides the world into predators and prey, into those who eat and those who go hungry. The raffish story pricks our consciences about issues for which there may be no solution but compassion - and curbing our appetites.
Publishers Weekly - Cahners\\Publishers_Weekly
Mixing environmentalism and political chicanery with an uninspired murder mystery, Hoyt sends the redoubtable James Burlane (Marimba, 1993, etc.) on a veritable world tour to Germany, Africa, India, Siberia and the Far East in search of the buyers of poached tigers, who sell the cats' bones at extravagant profit for use in traditional Chinese remedies. Meanwhile, a German detective, Hermann Iversen, is tracking an international serial killer who paints his female victims with tiger stripes before he kills them. Before these two plot lines converge in the Philippines, Burlane, hired by a consortium of environmental groups to make a dent in the tiger trade, must sort his way though a duplicitous cast of poachers, environmentalists and local hustlers; at the same time, the serial killer's body count grows. While Hoyt's prose is deft and dark-humored, his plotting and pacing are off. He switches venues too often, and both the murders and the resolution have a by-the-numbers feel. Despite its charms, this yarn is more housecat than tiger, and doesn't burn as bright as most of Burlane's other, more dangerous and more intriguing, adventures.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Mixing environmentalism and political chicanery with an uninspired murder mystery, Hoyt sends the redoubtable James Burlane (Marimba, 1993, etc.) on a veritable world tour to Germany, Africa, India, Siberia and the Far East in search of the buyers of poached tigers, who sell the cats' bones at extravagant profit for use in traditional Chinese remedies. Meanwhile, a German detective, Hermann Iversen, is tracking an international serial killer who paints his female victims with tiger stripes before he kills them. Before these two plot lines converge in the Philippines, Burlane, hired by a consortium of environmental groups to make a dent in the tiger trade, must sort his way though a duplicitous cast of poachers, environmentalists and local hustlers; at the same time, the serial killer's body count grows. While Hoyt's prose is deft and dark-humored, his plotting and pacing are off. He switches venues too often, and both the murders and the resolution have a by-the-numbers feel. Despite its charms, this yarn is more housecat than tiger, and doesn't burn as bright as most of Burlane's other, more dangerous and more intriguing, adventures. (Apr.)
Thomas Gaughan
James Burlane, aka Major Sid Khartoum, former CIA agent turned knight errant, is hired to find a solution to the tiger-poaching problem that threatens to extinguish the species. The job takes Burlane to Siberia, Hong Kong, and the Philippines and ultimately into the path of a tiger-obsessed psychopath who paints young women with stripes before murdering them. Along the way, the author offers a series of loopy-but-knowing discourses on myth and magic ala Joseph Campbell, Chinese cooking, the tragedy of the Philippines, and a dozen other fascinating subjects. As in "Marimba" (1992), Burlane's investigation of the drug trade, Hoyt concludes that greed will ultimately defeat any knight errant or Campbellesque hero. Remembering that Campbell advises us to "follow the bliss," Hoyt asks, Where is the bliss if the tiger is gone? His conclusion seems inescapable and profoundly depressing, but the journey to reach it is edifying and spirited entertainment.
Kirkus Reviews
A Munich detective's pursuit of a kinky killer converges with the efforts of an environmental group's hired gun to halt the ongoing slaughter of tigers.

James Burlane, the ex-CIA officer who triumphed over yakuza thugs in Japanese Game (1995) is back, this time tracking on assignment for CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species) a well-organized ring that has been reducing the world's census of those big cats whose bones and genitals command high prices among Asian manufacturers of homeopathic medicines. With stops along the way in Hong Kong, India, and Siberia, Burlane pursues his quarry to Cebu City in the Philippines, home of CITES' tiger expert, Heinz Tepe, and his Chinese wife Lilly. Meanwhile, Hermann Iversen, a German cop, has been hunting the maniac who paints young girls in tiger stripes before raping and murdering them. Identical homicides have been reported in Vladivostok, Calcutta, and other remote venues. At length, the trail leads Iversen through Mombasa to the Visayan Islands, where his chief suspect, Klaus Neumann, may be holed up. Once in Cebu, Burlane calls on Tepe and (thanks to eavesdropping skills) learns that his nominal boss is trafficking in contraband tiger remains on behalf of Lilly's family firm, a Triad known as Nine Dragons. He also discovers that Neumann, another German national, has been doing the Tepes' dirty work. Iversen (who eventually joins forces with Burlane) arrives in search of Neumann, the son of an animal trainer clawed to death by a tiger in the course of a circus performance. The two professionals manage to complete their mutual mission at the 11th hour, preventing Neumann from claiming a seventh victim, removing a dangerous poacher from a deadly game, and spiriting him to Australia for extradition to Bavaria.

For all its exotic settings, a formulaic thriller that offers almost no action or suspense—and Hoyt's notably graceless prose does little to redeem the predictable plot.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780812550719
Publisher:
Doherty, Tom Associates, LLC
Publication date:
02/15/1999
Series:
John Denson Mysteries Series
Edition description:
First Edition
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
4.25(w) x 6.75(h) x 0.65(d)

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

Richard Hoyt, a graduate of the University of Oregon, is a former fellow of the Washington Journalism Center and holds a Ph.D. in American studies from the University of Hawaii. He served as U.S. army counterintelligence agent, wrote for daily newspapers in Honolulu, and was a stringer for Newsweek magazine. He taught journalism at the University of Maryland and at Lewis and Clark College, Portland, Or.

Hoyt is the author of the John Denson mysteries, the James Burlane thrillers and numerous other novels of adventure, espionage and suspense including two under the pseudonym of Nicholas van Pelt. In researching and writing in more than two dozen countries in Europe, Latin America, and Asia, he has ridden trains across the Soviet Union and riverboats down the Amazon. He now lives in the Philippines.

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