Mehmet Murat Somer – The Gigolo Murder

Murat Somer, M. The Gigolo Murder. Original title Jigolo Cinayeti (2003). Translated by Kenneth James Dakan. First published in 2009 in this translation by Penguin Books (USA). First published in 2009 by Serpent’s Tail. 262 pages.ISBN 978-1-84668-698-6

This is the third volume in the Hop-Çiki-Yaya series, of which seven have been published in Turkey, the two previous are already available in English.

The book’s ingredients sound really interesting. The main character is an unnamed Turkish amateur sleuth. At daylight he is a computer wizard, working as a freelance for a computer security firm. At night a club owner transvestite, whose looks resemble her admired Audrey Hepburn. He/she is also a Thai kick-boxing expert whose abilities will be found useful to keep her/him out of trouble. Her/his closest friends are a drag queen and a former school mate, actually a chief police inspector. Other characters in the book are club employees (waiter, bartender, bodyguard, DJ), girls and transvestites.

The story begins when, devastated by a sentimental break-up, our unnamed heroine/hero is taken to a club by Ponpon, her drag queen friend, to cheer him up. There he/she met a handsome and powerful lawyer to whom he/she is immediately attracted. Unfortunately the lawyer, Haluk Pekerdem, has come with his wife. Suddenly news arrived that Faruk Hanoglu, a loan shark and Haluk’s brother-in-law, has been arrested on suspicion of killing a minibus driver, Volkan Saridogan, who is also a well known gigolo. Our heroine/hero believes in his innocence and will do everything on his/her hands to solve the case and help Perkeden.

Mehmet Murat Somer (Ankara, 1959) graduated at Middle East Technical University (ODTÜ) School of Industrial Engineering. For a short time period he worked as an engineer and later on as a banker for an extended period. Since 1994, he has been a management consultant, conducting corporate seminars on management skills and personal development.

I found this book really fascinating and very amusing, which makes it a very nice entertainment. It is written at a good pace with plenty of action that makes it a page turner. Maybe it is not a first class crime fiction book but, who cares, it is interesting enough and a good pastime reading. I have enjoyed it very much and I look forward to read other books in the series.

This book was my first Asia contribution to the 2010 Global Reading Challenge.

More information:

An interview with Mehmet Murat Somer DBB
Mis detectives favoritos (In Spanish)

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