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Mindfulness and Murder: A Father Ananda Mystery Paperback


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Mindfulness and Murder: A Father Ananda Mystery + The Second Rule Of Ten: A Tenzing Norbu Mystery (Dharma Detective: Tenzing Norbu Mystery)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 282 pages
  • Publisher: Crime Wave Press (December 5, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9881655668
  • ISBN-13: 978-9881655660
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.3 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #483,672 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Nick Wilgus lived and worked in Asia for many years. Titles in his Father Ananda murder-mystery series, which include Mindfulness and Murder, Garden of Hell and Killer Karma, have been translated into French, German, Spanish and Italian. An award-winning movie based on Mindfulness and Murder was released in 2011 by DeWarenne Pictures in Bangkok and nominated for Best Screenplay by the Thailand National Films Awards 2012. Wilgus, who is also the author of The Man Who Got Lost, was recently named best general columnist by the Mississippi Press Association. He lives in Seattle’s Chinatown district..

More About the Author

Nick Wilgus sold his first short story to The Horror Show Magazine at the age of seventeen, and has been writing ever since. His latest novel, SHAKING THE SUGAR TREE, marks his debut as a Southern humorist.

Wilgus is the author of the Father Ananda murder-mystery series: MINDFULNESS AND MURDER, SISTER SUICIDE and KILLER KARMA. He also wrote the script for the award-winning film SOP MAI NGEAP, based on MINDFULNESS AND MURDER, nominated for Best Screenplay by the Thai Film Association.

Writing as Sulayman X, Wilgus penned TEARS OF A DRAGON and KING OF STORMS, fantasy titles that feature positive portrayals of gay characters. He also wrote the Lambda-nominee BILAL'S BREAD, the coming of age story of a Kurdish boy and his family fleeing the violence of Iraq to make a new life in Kansas City.

Other works include THE MAN WHO GOT LOST, ONE NIGHT IN BANGKOK: THE SHORT STORIES, BOY CRUCIFIED, and THE QUEER WHO LOVED ALLAH.

After spending many years in Bangkok as a journalist working for the Bangkok Post, he now lives in Tupelo, Mississippi and works as a graphic designer.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Very well written!
Norman
The highest compliment one can pay a book is to plan to read more by the author.
C. M. Barrett
The keeps the novel moving at a good clip and keeps it interesting.
shaun brammer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By C. M. Barrett on March 15, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The highest compliment one can pay a book is to plan to read more by the author. That's my plan.

The concept of setting a murder in a Bangkok monastery was so original that I had to read Mindfulness and Murder. The author fully delivered in terms of characters and setting and more than delivered with the story.

Besides being a compulsive read, the book presented Buddhist principles in a totally nonintrusive and engaging way that was totally integrated with the story line and character development. This first book in a unique and engaging series will have readers, like me, wanting more.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Kathryn A. Morse on November 27, 2012
Format: Paperback
Finally an author combines Buddhism with the murder mystery genre. To me, Mindfulness and Murder follows the tradition of the Brother Cadfael or Sister Frevisse mysteries. And since Buddhism is a growing practice in the West, the Father Ananda mysteries set in a Buddhist monastery in Thailand meet a need for "recreational" Buddhist themed reading.

In Mindfulness and Murder, Nick Wilgus presents us with believable characters possessing the typical human frailties and typical human capacities for strength and wisdom. Murder mysteries in religious settings always offer the juxtaposition of horrible human behavior against the ideal human behavior and show how people deal with the tension between the two extremes. Wilgus introduces us to not just the monastery, but the neighborhood with both its likable everyday characters and unlikable criminal element. We can relate because the neighborhood is like so many of our own neighborhoods, but we can experience the unfamiliar, too, because the book is set in Thailand.

Mindfulness and Murder is an easy read and not too long - long enough to enjoy, but not to tax your time. I found it fun to read a novel set in Thailand as I am one of many Americans who has considered moving there because the cost of living is cheaper. I look forward to reading the other Father Ananda mysteries.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Gloria Jaguden on November 3, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A very well written book with all of the elements present which readers of "mysteries" want: an interesting protagonist, interesting atmosphere, satisfactory plot.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Camcoop on March 1, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
I got this one in hard copy and it proved a ripping read. By setting it in a Buddhist Temple in Thailand (where I happen to live), Wilgus puts a new twist on a well-worn but popular genre. Tourists who see monks walking around town usually have quite a different take on what their life is all about, imagining the lot of them to be devout and pious, (which some, like Father Ananda himself, actually are), but the temples are also a refuge for criminals and scoundrels of all types - one of the problems inherent in the monkhood's open-door policy - and more than a few of these have infected Ananda's temple. This leads to a rollicking murder and drug mystery that bleeds into the dirty streets of Bangkok as former police detective Ananda unravels the tangled web.

For me, a lot of the pleasure was in the details - Wilgus, who spent years at the Bangkok Post as a computer tech columnist and editor, apparently spent some time as a monk himself along the way (not for research purposes) - and shares insights into temple life and its hierarchy that is scrutinizing without being particularly critical in the negative sense. The monkhood is just a subculture as prone to corruption and compromise as any other.

The main characters are believable and well fleshed out - unlike so many other "novels" that Bangkok's expat community literally spews out, that usually amount to little more than a celebration by the author of the rediscovery of his previously dormant genitals.

Wilgus' book is several notches above that crap, and doesn't rely on cheap titillation to keep the reader engaged, instead doing so with solid writing of an international standard.

In any case, I liked it so much, I bought and read the sequel, and look forward to reading the next installment.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Janet Brown on November 9, 2012
Format: Paperback
What! A mystery set in Bangkok without a bargirl to be seen, in which the detective is completely Thai and a Buddhist monk to boot? Yes, that's right--Father Ananda is a man who observes all of the 227 precepts that are asked of Theravada monks, which means no alcohol, no nicotine, no sins of the flesh--not even coffee passes his lips. He's a far cry from most of the crime-solvers in Bangkok--but then authors write about what they know and author Nick Wilgus clearly knows more about Bangkok than what can be seen from a bar stool.

When a body is found inside a large water jar in one of the temple's bathrooms, eyes gouged out, skin embellished with cigarette burns, and a large yellow candle jammed into its mouth, Father Ananda is one of the first to know. Before taking his vows, he was a police officer, a man all too familiar with the smell of death, and his abbot charges him with the task of finding who the murderer might be, working with the police from the privileged position of a monastic insider.

The dead body is that of Noi, one of the temple boys, street kids who find food and shelter on sacred ground. Like many of them, this boy has a past filled with drugs, violence, and sexual abuse. Father Ananda soon discovers that Noi had been part of a drug-trafficking ring within the temple--one that may involve the monks themselves. When one of the monks disappears, leaving a hidden cache of drugs behind, Father Ananda is certain that some of his monastic brothers are not who they pretend to be.

Mindfulness and Murder introduces one of the most intriguing detectives since Hercules Poirot and "his little grey cells." Father Ananda is a complex character who became a monk after his wife and son were slaughtered in an act of underworld retaliation.
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