A farmer finds a corpse floating near the mouth of the Yangtze River. This isn't the first time a body has washed up on his little piece of land. He's seen girl babies. He's seen young women. But this body, despite its badly decomposed state, is easily identified as a foreigner by its red hair. David Stark, international attorney, and Liu Hulan, ...
A farmer finds a corpse floating near the mouth of the Yangtze River. This isn't the first time a body has washed up on his little piece of land. He's seen girl babies. He's seen young women. But this body, despite its badly decomposed state, is easily identified as a foreigner by its red hair. David Stark, international attorney, and Liu Hulan, inspector for the Ministry of Public Security in Beijing, are assigned to the murder investigation. However it soon becomes clear that this is more than a simple case of homicide. The victim, an American archaeologist, is just one of several similar casualties at archaeological sites along the Yangtze. What's more, priceless artefacts are disappearing from these same sites, only to reappear outside China on the world's art market. As David and Hulan pick their way through the complex maze of politics they come to realise that what is at stake is the safety of both their homelands. And that their shadowy enemy will stop at nothing to gain its mysterious prize - China's Dragon Bones.
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Publishers Weekly, 2003-03-24 The controversial construction of a massive dam on the Yangzi River is the backdrop for the latest adventures of Liu Hulan, inspector in the Ministry of Public Security in Beijing, and her husband, American lawyer David Stark, familiar to readers of Flower Net and The Interior. Many years in construction, the Three Gorges Dam will benefit millions of people, but it will also bury untold archeological wealth. At the start of this complex, atmospheric thriller, Hulan is emotionally estranged from David after their young daughter's death from meningitis, for which she blames herself. Officially, she is scrutinizing a reactionary cult, the All-Patriotic Society, when she is sent to investigate the murder by drowning of a young American archeologist, a man who may have stolen ancient artifacts from the dam site. David accompanies her and they begin to repair their relationship, but the body count mounts and the sinister All-Patriotic Society leader, Xiao Da, rallies his followers against the dam. The tension reaches the breaking point at an auction in Hong Kong at which the most precious artifacts are offered for sale; soon after, Hulan and David are fighting for their lives in dark, slimy-walled caves alongside the Yangzi. The melodramatic conclusion has none of the elegance of the prologue, which casually but exquisitely notes the progress of the archeologist's decaying body along the river, through narrows and bays beyond the magnificent gorges. But See succeeds in widening the reader's knowledge about the politics and culture of contemporary China while racing along with an absorbing story. Agent, Sandra Dijkstra. (May 27) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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