Book, you are a grim noir detective story set in a pseudo-medieval/Renaissance fantasy world. That's not too bad, even though I can see the genre-shaped spaces that every single one of your characters and situations fill, as I don't actually mind grim noir detective stories.

I do appreciate, book, that you fill your city with several different ethnic groups and skin colors and make an effort to have diverse cultures present, even though you tend to default to food words to describe darker skin tones and physical attributes (cinnamon skin, almond eyes, the usual). You're a first novel, after all, as far as I can tell. Certainly under this author name, and as the author committed the blunder of having your main character look into a mirror and describe himself, I'm assuming he hasn't written under another.

What I do not appreciate, however, is halfway through you, when I've settled into the groove and am reading along, is your slamming me with a secondary character crime lord whose person and surroundngs are ripped right off of Fu bloody Manchu! Your main character musing in passing that said crime lord might be surrounding himself in such trappings as a front does not actually excuse invoking the hell out of the Yellow Peril, down to opium-analogue smoking and long jeweled fingernails!

Book, I was intrigued by your main character being a lowlife thug with high-class language and manners when it pleased him, and I even finished you after that affront to taste because I wanted to know how he'd ended up in that position (which you didn't actually answer except elliptically, probably to save character revelation for a sequel). I shall not, however, be bothering to pick up your sequel, if you have one.

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