When reading a book set in another culture, it is nice to know the author has some first hand knowledge and familiarity with his subject.
From Description: "Lu Fei is a graduate of China's top police college but he's been assigned to a sleepy backwater town in northern China, where almost nothing happens and the theft of a few chickens represents a major crime wave. That is until a young woman is found dead, her organs removed, and joss paper stuffed in her mouth. The CID in Beijing--headed by a rising political star--is on the case but in an increasingly authoritarian China, prosperity and political stability are far more important than solving the murder of an insignificant village girl. As such, the CID head is interested in pinning the crime on the first available suspect rather than wading into uncomfortable truths, leaving Lu Fei on his own."
Lu Fei is an interesting character: a little lonely, not entirely unsatisfied with his backwater assignment, determined to do his best. When a superior wants an arrest quickly, Lu Fei must continue the investigation on his own, not only to solve the murder, but to prevent an innocent man from being convicted.
As it turns out, the young woman's death and the method is part of a pattern, and Lu Fei finds himself on the trail of a serial killer.
The plot is interesting on its own, but the connection with the Chinese bureaucracy and culture added to my appreciation of the novel.
Read in Feb.; blog review scheduled for April 9.
NetGalley/St. Martin's Press
Police Procedural/Cultural. May 1, 2021. Print length: 288 pages.
Sounds good to me! I haven't read a police procedural in a while so will definitely add this onto my wishlist.ReplyDelete
It was an interesting procedural, and Lu Fei is a likable character!Delete
The Chinese setting would interest me, too. :)ReplyDelete
It is always interesting to see a procedural set in another country, but especially one with such a different culture.Delete
I find it hard to believe, but until I read this review I never even wondered about crime-fighting in China and how it was organized. Murders investigations are just not something that I've ever associated with Communist China before. Do you know of others set in China? I'm going to look for this one. If my library doesn't already have it on order, I'll suggest it.ReplyDelete
You might want to give Eliot Pattison's Shan Tao Yun mysteries a try. The first is The Skull Mantra, one of my Best Reads of 2013.Delete
Eliot Pattison's Inspector Shan series has been a favorite for decades. I agree with Cathy, this is a series you would appreciate. Set in Tibet, excellent characterization, and an eye-opening experience.Delete
Qiu Xialong also has a great series. The first is Death of a Red Heroine, and Inspector Chen is a wonderful MC.
Thanks for putting this on my radar!ReplyDelete
It doesn't approach Eliot Pattison, but that would be difficult. :)Delete
Pinning it on the first available suspect happens often, due to the laziness of a Detective who is too comfortable to pursue the actual culprit. This sounds interesting.ReplyDelete
Right, and when the powers-that-be want things settled quickly....Delete
This sounds really good! I'll have to add it to my wishlist. :)ReplyDelete
It was interesting, especially in the context of culture. :)Delete
I really like the sound of this one especially because of its setting as I so rarely read something set in China. And, thank you for pointing out the author's background. I definitely appreciate that he's at least familiar with the country and its politics and culture.ReplyDelete
Ahh how good does this sound? I forgot i had it on my TBR!ReplyDelete
I enjoy mysteries set in other countries and appreciate it even more when an author either comes from that country or has done thorough research. I will have to give this one a try. You've reminded me I have Death of a Red Heroine on my shelf to read.ReplyDelete