The Red Lotus

I have read almost all of Chris Bohjalian’s books.  I have liked them all, some more than others.  This new book by him is no exception.  A troubling and disturbing thriller, this book is more frightening because of what the world is living through, now in 2020 with the Corona Virus pandemic.  At times, I found myself amazed at the horrifying similarities…almost enough for me to want to close the book.  I didn’t.

Alexis is an ER doctor and she meets Austin when he comes into the ER because of a gunshot wound.  They become lovers.  He also works in fundraising for the same hospital.  They decide to go on a bike trip to Vietnam because Austin wants to pay homage to where his uncle died and where his Dad was injured. Is this the truth or is there a darker reason for his journey to Vietnam.  One day during their trip, Austin goes out for a ride and does not return.  Alexis is beside herself and for some strange occurrences, she wonders what Austin really was up to.

She returns to Manhattan and begins her investigation into his death.  Rats, pathogens, greed and deceit take over and she struggles to find the truth.  She does.

This is a disturbing book.