John Enright was born in Buffalo, New York, in 1945. After serving stints in semi-pro baseball and the Lackawanna steel mills, he earned his degree from City College of New York while working full-time at Fortune, Time, and Newsweek magazines. He later completed a master's degree in folklore at UC-Berkeley, before devoting the 1970s to the publishing industry in New York, San Francisco, and Hong Kong. In 1981, he left the United States to teach at the American Samoa Community College and spent the next twenty-six years living on the islands of the South Pacific. Over the past four decades, his essays, articles, short stories, and poems have appeared in more than seventy books, anthologies, journals, periodicals, and online magazines. His collection of poems from Samoa, 14 Degrees South, won the University of the South Pacific Press's inaugural International Literature Competition. Today, he and his wife, ceramicist Connie Payne, live in Jamestown, Rhode Island.
The fourth book in the Jungle Beat Mystery series from acclaimed author John Enright
A disquieting string of murders terrorizes the remote, lush island of Samoa. Detective Sergeant Apelu Soifua has seen a lot in his time with the police force, but even he is unsettled by the bodies that have started piling up. At first, the murders don’t seem connected—a local transvestite found castrated and brutalized, a visiting politician who drops dead on the dance floor, a prison guard and an inmate who kill each other—but as Apelu works with the hospital’s new medical examiner to find out who is behind the killings, a disturbing pattern emerges. And the closer they get to the killer, the more destructive he becomes. Can they put the pieces together before Apelu becomes the next victim?
Samoan detective Apelu Soifua lives on the knife edge of two disparate cultures, navigating a perilous dance between native and new that, over the years, has landed him in his fair share of trouble. So when a routine patrol on a remote jungle estate uncovers an inter-island smuggling ring, it doesn’t take long for Apelu to realize there’s more than just cigarettes and bootleg CDs at stake. Someone in Apelu’s corner of paradise is trafficking humans—and they won’t think twice about setting up a cop to take the fall.
Now Apelu stands accused of murder, and his only shot at proving his innocence is to go AWOL from his job and his wife until he can unearth the truth. Hunted by the police, his only ally is a young American widow whom he quickly discovers is anything but what she seems. Apelu knows he’s playing with fire—but can he unmask a killer before he gets burned?