- Series: Storm Kayama Mysteries (Book 1)
- Hardcover: 275 pages
- Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press; 1 edition (September 15, 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1590580176
- ISBN-13: 978-1590580172
- Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1 x 8.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 9 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,692,948 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Primitive Secrets (Storm Kayama Mysteries) Hardcover – September 15, 2002
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From Publishers Weekly
Deborah Turrell Atkinson smoothly blends contemporary crime and native Hawaiian legend in her second novel, Primitive Secrets. When Storm Kayama discovers her beloved adoptive attorney uncle, Miles Hamasaki, dead at his desk, her search for his killer takes her on a journey into her own painful past that illuminates the larger conflicts in the 50th state's diverse culture.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Library Journal
After the apparent heart-attack death of her adoptive father, Hawaiian lawyer Miles Hamasaki, Storm Kayama is first mugged, then robbed, then threatened. Someone desperately wants Hamasaki's briefcase, which, as Storm finds later, contains sensitive material relating to a cancer insurance case. In the end, Storm makes use of Hawaiian resources, including a traditional healer and a ranch hand, to uncover her father's killer. Legal firm insider stuff, a possible romance with a handsome new associate, adoptive family secrets, and unusual settings round out a memorable read. For larger collections.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Top customer reviews
The evidence suggests that the 77 year old died of a heart attack, and the family begins the grieving process. But then Storm is attacked and her apartment is broken into. Could there be more to Miles' death then they thought?
To be honest, the book started out very slowly. No one but us begins to think it was murder until much later in the story. We get details of Storm's life that, while they do play a part, could have been slipped in later in the story. And it didn't help that I had trouble keeping all the people at the law firm straight since the author kept switching from first to last names.
The further I read, the more I got into the story, however. The suspense built rather quickly once it got going, and I was able to separate out the characters. There were several nail biting scenes that had my heart racing. And the climax was logically developed.
In the end, I'm glad I read this book and intend to get more. So don't let the slow start keep you from enjoying the book.
As Storm works at the office trying to catch up with the work Miles left behind she soon finds herself the victim of a series of attacks and burglaries all aimed at the files he left behind. She also begins to discover that her coworkers and even her adoptive family seem to be hiding secrets about their relationships with Miles.
Storm investigates Miles' leftover cases, ranging from an HMO lawsuit to investment propositions from his family. She is aided by the attractive attorney Ian Hamlin and her Hawaiian healer aunt. As she comes closer and closer to the truth Storm finds herself distrusting those she has trusted most and reliving some of her childhood pains.
This is a wonderfully atmospheric mystery that accurately reflects the flavors and sites of O'ahu and the Big Island. The foods, the people, and the changing land all ring true and I could easily identify the places Atkinson describes. She also creates a witty, smart, and likeable character in Storm, a part-Japanese, part-Hawaiian, 30-something woman. The humor, scenery, Hawaiian folklore, and fast-moving plot all combine to make a must-read mystery. I can't wait for Atkinson's next
Author Deborah Turrell Atkinson writes convincingly of a Hawaii that ballances between its ancient traditions and the glitz of modern life. The HMO patient suffering from cancer and receiving both modern and traditional treatments is both important and symbolic of the broader issues that Storm, and many Hawaiians face in their daily lives.
PRIMITIVE SECRETS starts slow, really involving the reader only in the second half of the novel. I had a hard time identifying with Storm and her behavior and reactions. Although incompetent police work is standard in the mystery genre, it is difficult to believe that the Hawaiian police would be as negligent as portrayed by Atkinson. Fortunately, Atkinson turns up the suspense in the second half of the book, drawing the reader to a strong conclusion.
The plot moved fast, and had several interesting layers, so it kept me turning pages. There were several very exciting sequences, like a car chase on a rainy,winding rural road at night, and some very funny events, which I won't divulge.
One of the things that sets this book apart was that Atkinson took me to Hawaii. I felt that I knew Hawaii's people, past and present. I became part of an exotic cultural mix of customs and beliefs, and traveled to places tourists don't get to go.
If you like Tony Hillerman's mysteries set among the Navajos in Arizona, or Dana Stabenow's mysteries set in Alaska, you'll love 'Primitive Secrets'!