drumming and screeching of a Chinese opera, Jake Greenberg, an
American expatriate and owner of a fashionable casino, sits in the
dark in a choice private box. With him is his lover, Claire Turner, a
savvy and attractive American reporter for the Shanghai Daily, her
niece and his host, a ruthless Chinese businessman, named Yang, who
was Jake’s partner in gun running when Jake first came to China. Just
before the climax of the opera, the door to the box slowly swings
open...when the lights come on, Claire’s niece and Yang are dead.
With a grieving Claire helping him, Jake begins to
trace Yang’s shady business dealings, his turbulent family relations
and his public affair with a famous Chinese movie actress. The
twisting path of the search leads to a half-crazed giant Chinese
warlord, an evil female river pirate, glamorous film personalities, a
sinister restaurant waiter turned gunman, a yet-to-be famous Communist
leader, Zhou En-lai, and some of the very rich at the highest levels
of Shanghai’s Western society.
This novel of murder and intrigue in 1920s Shanghai
is the first in a series of well-researched period detective novels.
Copyright © Howard S.