Other Books in Series
This is book number 1 in the The Red Princess Mysteries series.
As the story opens, the son of the American Ambassador to China is missing, his corpse is soon discovered by a Grandfather and his Granddaughter out for an afternoon ice skating. Police Detective Liu Hulan finds little cooperation in investigating the suspicious death of the robust young man. The investigation is soon tabled. Very shortly thereafter in San Francisco, Assistant US Attorney David Stark accompanies the FBI to a ship with illegal Chinese immigrants set adrift in the path of a storm. Marooned with unfortunate human cargo on the floundering vessel as the storm approaches, David makes a grisly discovery, the body of a dead man. Clearly he was not one of the refugees. The plot thickens when he is identified as a Red Prince, one of China’s elite. The two deaths, the Ambassador’s son and the Red Prince of China, share similarities that make a link between them likely. Now both countries are more eager to find answers. David is dispatched to Beijing to join forces with Liu Hulan. This is not only a gripping mystery; it is also a good look at the differences in both lifestyle and the use of police authority in both countries. For instance, the court system and carrying out of sentences is quite different in China from the USA. Flower Net is the first of a trilogy; The Interior is next, followed by Dragon Bones. Although Lisa See is best known for her literary historical fiction such as Snowflower and the Secret Fan, her three mysteries are excellent too.
— Deon Stonehouse
“Lisa See begins to do for Beijing what Sir Arthur Conan Doyle did for turn-of-the-century London or Dashiell Hammett did for 1920s San Francisco: She discerns the hidden city lurking beneath the public facade.”
–The Washington Post Book World
In the depths of a Beijing winter, during the waning days of Deng Xiaoping’s reign, the U.S. ambassador’s son is found dead–his body entombed in a frozen lake. Around the same time, aboard a ship adrift off the coast of Southern California, Assistant U.S. Attorney David Stark makes a startling discovery: the corpse of a Red Prince, a scion of China’s political elite.
The Chinese and American governments suspect that the deaths are connected and, in an unprecedented move, they join forces to see justice done. In Beijing, David teams up with the unorthodox police detective Liu Hulan. In an investigation that brings them to every corner of China and sparks an intense attraction between the two, David and Hulan discover a web linking human trafficking to the drug trade to governmental treachery–a web reaching from the Forbidden City to the heart of Los Angeles and, like the wide flower net used by Chinese fishermen, threatening to ensnare all within its reach.
“A graceful rendering of two different and complex cultures, within a highly intricate plot . . . The starkly beautiful landscapes of Beijing and its surrounding countryside are depicted with a lyrical precision.”
–Los Angeles Times Book Review
“Murder and intrigue splash across the canvas of modern Chinese life. . . . A vivid portrait of a vast Communist nation in the painful throes of a sea change.”
“Fascinating . . . that rare thriller that enlightens as well as it entertains.”
–San Diego Union-Tribune
A Finalist for the Edgar Award for Best First Mystery
A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK
About the Author
Lisa See is the New York Times bestselling author of Dreams of Joy, Shanghai Girls, Peony in Love, Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, Flower Net (an Edgar Award nominee), The Interior, and Dragon Bones, as well as the critically acclaimed memoir On Gold Mountain. The Organization of Chinese American Women named her the 2001 National Woman of the Year. She lives in Los Angeles.