Death in Little Tokyo by Dale Furutani: D

From the back cover:
It’s Ken Tanaka’s turn to stage a mock mystery for the Los Angeles Mystery Club and he’s determined to do it right. Tanaka sets himself up as a fake P.I., office and all, only to have a femme fatale try to hire him. Taking the case on a whim, Ken’s detecting leads him to a mutilated corpse in a Little Tokyo hotel room.

The police suspect Tanaka, and to clear his name, he becomes caught up in a mystery involving the Japanese Mafia and an international smuggling scheme. From the quaint shops of Little Tokyo to a seedy strip joint, the murderer’s trail leads back to a tragic chapter in America’s past. And when it comes to finding the killer with a sharp sword, the answer is too close to home.

Man, this book is crappy. I don’t think I’m even going to waste my time writing full paragraphs about it. Instead, enjoy this pithy list:

1. The women characters are poorly done.

2. Dialogue is laughably abysmal.

3. The plot is incredibly lame. Most of the investigation is waiting for one specific chick to be found and little else. Finally, chick reveals tidbit that leads to the conclusion. Once the tidbit is delivered, culprit is entirely obvious and the remainder of the book is excruciating to get through.

4. The detective dude has several too stupid to live moments.

5. Every Asian the detective encounters launches into a story about how they have not been able to do X on account of being Asian. I do not mean to belittle the effects of racism, but all of this bogs down what little plot there is.

6. Every Japanese person, even if they’re third generation Japanese-American, seems to only eat Japanese food.

7. Detective has epiphany while watching a samurai flick, because clearly third generation Japanese-Americans only watch Japanese things, too.

And a bonus reason for the Recorded Books audiobook:

8. Terrible pronunciation of Japanese. Constantly hearing the victim, Matsuda, referred to as maht-SUE-da was grating enough, but the final straw was the appearance of the yaKOOza.

[dalek] Avoid! Avoid! [/dalek]

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