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the noble path
ISBN 0-7499-0128-4
Published in the UK by Piatkus Books (1992), and in the USA by St. Martin's Press.

Innocence is a force more potent, sometimes, than evil. For it has no concept of its own power to destroy. The Noble Path is the story of two people who become its victims.

Jack Elliot is a man without a soul. A discredited British Army officer, he kills now for money. For him life is cheap - even his own. Only death comes expensive. And when Ang Yuon, a wealthy Cambodian refugee, asks him to cross from Thailand to rescue his wife and children from the Khmer Rouge, Elliot demands an extravagant fee. For this time he expects, perhaps hopes, to die. But even Elliot is unprepared for the scale of suffering inflicted on an innocent Cambodian people, or for the curse it brings him - a reason to live.

Lisa is Elliot's teenage daughter, stepping into the unknown in search of the father she has never met. Following him as far as Bangkok, she falls foul of his ruthless Thai associates. In her innocence she sees the obsequious Tuk Than as no more than a concerned friend of her father, and the beautiful, bewitching Grace as his talented protege. She does not realise that Tuk's business interests encompass girls as well as guns, and that Grace is a cunning procuress who can find any number of buyers for an innocent English girl...

In the fetid jungles of Cambodia or on the storm-tossed South China Sea, in the opulent mansions of Bangkok or in its seamy back streets, Elliot and Lisa tread the hard path of enlightenment, and head inexorably towards a final, unexpected and devastating encounter.

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© Peter May 2004