North Korea Leadership Watch

Research and Analysis on the DPRK Leadership

The Man with the Baltic Stare

The Minister of People's (Public) Security (C) and the internal security political commissar (R) taking notes.

The two Koreas are tacitly coordinating to maintain stability in the north country while preparing for a superficial merger.  An illumined, thriving Pyongyang is a hotbed of thugs and Chinese security officials.  Meanwhile a boss from the south has summoned Inspector O from his mountaintop residence in Jagang Province.  Several years after the events of Bamboo and Blood Inspector O would like to return to his exile (he made sure the wording on that paperwork was ironclad), which becomes next to impossible.

O interacts with a good cross-section of clerk and functionary from Macau to Prague to the revolutionary capital.  His mission is to bury the case of a missing successor who may have murdered a prostitute and stuffed the dismembered corpse in some unique luggage.  Meanwhile the center’s health is not all that great, “serious enough to be confined to bed, but not so serious it was impossible to issue orders.”

Superlatives can not be applied to James Church’s fourth Inspector O novel because The Man with the Baltic State is not the last we will read in the short or or long forms.  Like the preceding novel, this is an excellent body count narrative punctuated by metaphysical geopolitical discourse and O’s meditations about the old timers.

The Man with the Baltic Stare (WorldCat)

James Church

Minotaur Books

Amazon (book) (Kindle)

The Taedonggang Combined Fruit Farm, which is managed by the Ministry of People's Security, in Samsok District, Pyongyang (GoogleEarth)

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This article was written on 28 Aug 2010, and is filled under Ministry of Public Security.

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