The Thai Amulet by Thomas Dahlqvist

On the first page a female Thai military Captain who has deserted is shot and killed. The freelance journalist Tommy Berg succeeds in getting his hands on the amulet that the woman was wearing around her neck, an amulet that holds dangerous secrets…

A Lot of Politics

The Thai Amulet invites us behind the scenes of the Swedish weapons export industry. There is a lot of “weapons/military-politics” and it is the novel’s greatest strength but also its greatest weakness. This part of the story is really good, but unfortunately it is never really integrated in the main storyline; instead it feels like the two stories are told side-by-side.

The Characters

You can tell that the author really focused on the plot and that the characters came second. It is a sacrifice that has to be made in order to tell a complicated story in an exciting way. With that said the characters are not worse than those in other novels in the same subgenre.

Unexpected Turn

The novel also has an… (I intended to say twist, but that is the wrong word)…“unexpected turn” in the end that I do not know if I buy. It felt “cheap” when you compare it with the quality of the main story.


Despite its flaws I still think that The Thai Amulet is an absolutely acceptable debut novel. Its plot is one of the better I have seen in the genre and the novel is both exciting and entertaining, which is the most important thing in my mind.


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