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The Diamond Queen of Singapore

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In the latest thrilling novel in the Ava Lee series, Ava investigates a Ponzi scheme that takes her from Amsterdam to Antwerp and then Singapore, where she must confront one of the country’s most powerful families. After the father of Ava’s best friend, Mimi, loses his family’s savings in a Ponzi scheme, Mimi turns to her old friend for help. Ava launches an investigation t In the latest thrilling novel in the Ava Lee series, Ava investigates a Ponzi scheme that takes her from Amsterdam to Antwerp and then Singapore, where she must confront one of the country’s most powerful families. After the father of Ava’s best friend, Mimi, loses his family’s savings in a Ponzi scheme, Mimi turns to her old friend for help. Ava launches an investigation that sends her from Amsterdam to Antwerp and then to Singapore. As she tracks the money, Ava is reminded of an old case she worked with Uncle years before that took her to Singapore for the first time. In her mind, the two cases begin to merge, and as they do, Uncle becomes visible to Ava, counselling her and urging her to make use of her new triad connections. Ava is reluctant to do so, but Uncle is persistent, and soon Ava finds herself in conflict with one of the most influential family dynasties in Singapore and eventually back in Toronto, where she confronts a new face of power and corruption.


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In the latest thrilling novel in the Ava Lee series, Ava investigates a Ponzi scheme that takes her from Amsterdam to Antwerp and then Singapore, where she must confront one of the country’s most powerful families. After the father of Ava’s best friend, Mimi, loses his family’s savings in a Ponzi scheme, Mimi turns to her old friend for help. Ava launches an investigation t In the latest thrilling novel in the Ava Lee series, Ava investigates a Ponzi scheme that takes her from Amsterdam to Antwerp and then Singapore, where she must confront one of the country’s most powerful families. After the father of Ava’s best friend, Mimi, loses his family’s savings in a Ponzi scheme, Mimi turns to her old friend for help. Ava launches an investigation that sends her from Amsterdam to Antwerp and then to Singapore. As she tracks the money, Ava is reminded of an old case she worked with Uncle years before that took her to Singapore for the first time. In her mind, the two cases begin to merge, and as they do, Uncle becomes visible to Ava, counselling her and urging her to make use of her new triad connections. Ava is reluctant to do so, but Uncle is persistent, and soon Ava finds herself in conflict with one of the most influential family dynasties in Singapore and eventually back in Toronto, where she confronts a new face of power and corruption.

30 review for The Diamond Queen of Singapore

  1. 5 out of 5

    ☘Misericordia☘ ~ The Serendipity Aegis ~ ⚡ϟ⚡ϟ⚡⛈ ✺❂❤❣

    Ava Lee and her unique collection style welcome back :) Hear, hear!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Trish

    The e-edition of Hamilton’s latest in the Ava Lee series is out and you will want to take this trip with Ava as she hits several continents: Amsterdam and Antwerp in Europe, Singapore and mainland China in Asia, and back to Toronto in North America. Ava’s collecting debts but for a friend, as she had in her early career. It brings back memories. This time it is not debts Ava is following but cold, hard investment theft wrapped up in a not-so-generous evangelical megachurch on the outskirts of To The e-edition of Hamilton’s latest in the Ava Lee series is out and you will want to take this trip with Ava as she hits several continents: Amsterdam and Antwerp in Europe, Singapore and mainland China in Asia, and back to Toronto in North America. Ava’s collecting debts but for a friend, as she had in her early career. It brings back memories. This time it is not debts Ava is following but cold, hard investment theft wrapped up in a not-so-generous evangelical megachurch on the outskirts of Toronto. Hamilton creates the cruelest, most unambiguously unforgivable villains to walk the earth, and places them in a world we recognize. From there, the scandal just gets bigger… Has anyone read the 14th-century Chinese novel called, variously, The Water Margin, Outlaws of the Marsh, and All Men Are Brothers? It is a rip-roaring 4-volume Song Dynasty yarn, a masterpiece of storytelling, packed with colorful characters whose names tell it all: Little Whirlwind, Blue-Faced Beast, Impatient Vanguard, etc. The epic story tells of 108 bandits who live by the margin of Liang Shan Marsh and pursue justice by unconventional means. Hamilton’s story this time has elements of this ancient tale. He named his thieving church leaders Cunningham, Rogers, and Randy. Ava’s triad connection in Chengdu, Han, is blustery and loud, his crass manner and crude-but-effective methods modeled on characters in the ancient tale. Han uses his fists when words are not enough. He carries a large weapon to focus the attention of his opponents on their limited options. I adored this tale for these elements, and for outlining and pointing to the real and acutely painful problem that Ava uncovers in the course of her investigations, something that has been plaguing the West, particularly the United States and Canada, for some years now. The problem has its source in China and concerned North Americans have wondered how on earth this is happening without and/or despite Chinese government oversight. The answer to that question echoes what we hear when contemplating the indescribably painful political atmosphere in the United States: it is completely within the realm of the country’s leadership to stop the trouble. For some reason beyond our understanding, the leadership prefers chaos. God help us all. Another fantastic addition to Hamilton’s box of jewels. P.S. If you are going to pick up Outlaws of the Marsh, please choose Sidney Shapiro’s translation, the language of which made me fall in deeply love with Chinese culture, habits and humor. Shapiro’s word choices make the ancient book immediately relevant, laugh-out-loud funny, and the long read tireless.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Alan Teder

    Ava Lee Collects Again! Review of the House of Anansi Spiderline ebook edition (May 2020) rush released in advance of the expected paperback edition (August 2020) I tried to space this out but just could not stop reading. Not only does Ian Hamilton return his forensic accountant Ava Lee to her collection days, but he brings her back to Toronto (my town, yeah!) for the dramatic beginning and ending of this new investigation thriller. I read The Diamond Queen of Singapore in its eBook edition which Ava Lee Collects Again! Review of the House of Anansi Spiderline ebook edition (May 2020) rush released in advance of the expected paperback edition (August 2020) I tried to space this out but just could not stop reading. Not only does Ian Hamilton return his forensic accountant Ava Lee to her collection days, but he brings her back to Toronto (my town, yeah!) for the dramatic beginning and ending of this new investigation thriller. I read The Diamond Queen of Singapore in its eBook edition which was rush released in May 2020 when publication of the print edition was bumped from July to August 2020 due to the pandemic. I do not enjoy eBooks generally as I dislike reading onscreen at length, but with an Ava Lee book, resistance is futile. The book manages to touch all the bases of Ava Lee's past with even Uncle making appearances in her dreams to give advice. Her Bak mai martial arts skills are brought back into play several times. The collection effort is personal as it is her childhood friend Mimi's family who have been swindled. Ava's international connections, including her Triad allies, are brought into play, with one very fearsome addition to the ranks. Ava's lover Fai is mostly away as she begins working on a last minute new role with plans for a significant revitalization of director/writer Lau Lau's career in a Tiananmen Square related film yet to come (sure to be a central theme in a future book). All this, and the villains are a Toronto/Aurora based group of bible-thumping scam artists peddling #FentanylChina products on top of their other sins. It is all cat-nip to an Ava fan. Trivia and Link You can read author Ian Hamilton's article One for the Books: Publishing in a Pandemic at the Literary Review of Canada June 2020 online edition here.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Ruth

    Ava Lee kicks ass again in a brief return to her forensic accountant days.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Muhammad Gibran

    3/5 stars. by no means I don't like it. it just the ending seems not very satisfying like any other ava lee title.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Jason

    Best one of the last few! Thanks, Ian. :)

  7. 4 out of 5

    Tim Wong

    One of the best of the series and builds on everything in the series.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Brian Williams

    This is an excellent Ava Lee suspense thriller and a book that a reader can easily want to read in one sitting until the end is reached. It's a swiftly paced story about Ava's hunt for and recovery of money stolen from the parents of her best friend Mimi. That was something that she did with her former (now deceased partner) Uncle for many years up to when Uncle died. It was their "debt recovery" business, which she closed to become a business entrepreneur. Mimi's situation brings her back to he This is an excellent Ava Lee suspense thriller and a book that a reader can easily want to read in one sitting until the end is reached. It's a swiftly paced story about Ava's hunt for and recovery of money stolen from the parents of her best friend Mimi. That was something that she did with her former (now deceased partner) Uncle for many years up to when Uncle died. It was their "debt recovery" business, which she closed to become a business entrepreneur. Mimi's situation brings her back to her former business. The story starts in Toronto and moves on to Singapore and China before returning to Toronto. It goes over the top at times, for example when Ava receives visits from Uncle dispensing advice to her. On the other hand, the last several chapters could serve as a masterclass in negotiation. It's an entertaining and diverting read. Recommended.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Charlie

    Ava Lee is back to chasing a debt, but this time it's personal -- her friend Mimi's family needs her old skills. As usual, Ava is adding to her frequent flier miles, and dealing with scary people. I enjoyed this book, but found the Uncle dream sequences just a bit much. As a plot device to tell her what to do, it's kind of lame. I'd far rather have her consciously work out why she does what she does, rather have Uncle appear to her in a dream. Plus I miss the newer characters of the more recent Ava Lee is back to chasing a debt, but this time it's personal -- her friend Mimi's family needs her old skills. As usual, Ava is adding to her frequent flier miles, and dealing with scary people. I enjoyed this book, but found the Uncle dream sequences just a bit much. As a plot device to tell her what to do, it's kind of lame. I'd far rather have her consciously work out why she does what she does, rather have Uncle appear to her in a dream. Plus I miss the newer characters of the more recent books: Xu, May Ling Wong, Amanda, and Pang Fai. All of whom are at least referenced in this book, but really don't appear or play an active role. Overall? 4 stars when most of this series have been 5 stars.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Wanda

    Reading a new installment in the Ava Lee series is like catching up with an old friend at this point. There is the usual amount of food descriptions, historical anecdotes, and of course, Ava taking no prisoners. I admit I kept waiting for the usual bump in the road in her journey, and I was surprised that it felt like such a smooth sailing. I’m glad I gave in to my impatience and bought the ebook instead waiting for the physical paperback — this was worth the hours of sleep lost.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    There is one thing I hate about this book: right now it's the last in the series, as the author is still writing them. Ava is back, and Derek makes an appearance. Chase the money, fly all over the world, use some triad connections. All in a weeks work for Ava. I bet the new strong female character, Han's daughter, is sure to show up again in later books.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Hopsnbarley

    This one gets back to the goodness of some of the earlier Ava Lee books. We didn't have to hear as much repetitive detail about what Ava ate or wore...a bit is okay but too much focus wasn't interesting. I like Ava dealing with a debt issue again. The ending was a bit anti-climactic but the build up and overall story was enjoyable to follow.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Barbara

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Ian Hamilton has become one of my go to authors for a good story and he doesn’t fail with this book. I wish I could read the longer story. I want more relationship, for instance, it felt like the title wasn’t quite justified. The diamond queen of Singapore wasn’t the pivotal point and the church was. That being said still an awesome tale.

  14. 4 out of 5

    William Beauvais

    this seemed even smoother than all the other items in this series. i read it in a day it seemed and the outcome was very satisfying.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Lynn Mclaughlin

    That's a little more like it!! The "old" Ava is back.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    This was an Ava Lee storyline they went back to her roots in debt collection and I thoroughly enjoyed the read. Smart, thoughtful, and determined.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Jaap

    One of the better ones in the series!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Mary

    I just love this series!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Miriam Walden

    A lesbian forensic accountant travels the world to retrieve stolen funds from evil doers. She kicks butt financially, morally, and literally.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Vicki

  21. 5 out of 5

    Sheila

  22. 4 out of 5

    Rupa Natarajan

  23. 4 out of 5

    Laurie

  24. 4 out of 5

    Sandra Eggers

  25. 4 out of 5

    Gordon Porter

  26. 5 out of 5

    Wendy Gay

  27. 4 out of 5

    Avery Lyford

  28. 4 out of 5

    Joan Pilsmaker

  29. 5 out of 5

    Kelly

  30. 4 out of 5

    Paula Rewers

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