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Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The Insidious Dr. Fu Manchu by Sax Rohmer (R.I.P. #5)

The Insidious Dr. Fu-Manchu-- :) despite the fact that Rohmer's works are so awfully politically incorrect (publication date 1913), I have this weird fascination with his writing.  His books are Gothic and yet modern for the times (I think Steampunk aficionados would love him).  It was also a great R.I.P. read.

This is the first novel in the Fu-Manchu series with a different set of characters than in Bat Wing (I reviewed Bat Wing  here with some notes on Fu-Manchu, as well), but the same dynamic.  Dr. Petrie is the side-kick, although a very active one, to  Nayland Smith a government official in Burma and formerly of Scotland Yard.

Smith is on the trail of the insidious Dr. Fu-Manchu, a member of the Yellow Peril.  whose apparent goal is to take over the world (perhaps not too far off from more recent Chinese aspirations), and the brilliant Dr. Fu-Manchu is in England with plans to assassinate anyone who knows enough to be a danger to  the group.  Nayland Smith and Dr. Petrie are hot on his trail, but find themselves in some difficult circumstances.

You can read it on-line here, or at least get a little taste of it.  I found the novel interesting in many ways and suspenseful (if a bit repetitive) and somehow...charming, but I don't know if it will appeal to everyone.

Fiction.  Mystery/Suspense/Gothic.  1913 original publ. date. Kindle.


  1. Politically incorrect but it sounds like a rollicking story nonetheless. I bet my husabnad would love it. I'll have to tell him about this!

  2. Stefanie, they really are politically incorrect, but a lot of fun. A cross between Wilkie Collins and H.P. Lovecraft!

  3. Fun stuff. I love that old cover.

  4. Yeah, Smith and Petrie find themselves in difficult situations, over and over. There are plenty of escapes from danger!