Let's consider some popular qualities of the modern-day thriller heroine: a painful incident in her recent past, residence in an exotic locale, a heightened ability to talk trash, and a complete inability to recognize danger as she walks right into it. Ellie Cooper has them all.
Sent into the Iraq War as a medic at the age of 19, where she lived through several highly traumatic incidents, she has washed up in China. Her post-traumatic stress disorder prevents her from doing much except drinking beer and hanging out with her friend Lao Zhang, occasionally showing up for her part-time job at a karaoke bar, and checking her email. As for talking trash and blithely putting herself in harm's way, she reminds me of Janet Evanovich's bounty hunter, Stephanie Plum. I hope that Lisa Brackmann wouldn't take that the wrong way; I happen to admire Stephanie Plum a great deal.
After Lao ...
I'm living in this dump in Haidian Qu, close to Wudaokou, on the twenty-first floor of a decaying high-rise. The grounds are bare; the trees have died; the rubber tiles on the walkways, in their garish pink and yellow, are cracked and curling. The lights have been out in the lobby since I moved in; they never finished the interior walls in the foyers outside the elevator, and the windows are boarded up, so every time I step outside the apartment door Im in a weird twilight world of bare cement and blue fluorescent light.... continued
From the author...
"Rock Paper Tiger is an example of my "magpie" method of plotting take a bunch of unrelated things swirling around in the ether and see if I can somehow make them go together. This is how I ended up with a novel involving the Chinese art scene, the War on Terror, fugitive Uighurs, online gaming and the Iraq ...
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