Other Books in Series
This is book number 2 in the The Red Princess Mysteries series.
The Interior by Lisa See is the second in a mystery trilogy. Flower Net is the first in the trilogy. Interior finds Liu Hulon trying to quiet the cacophony of sound from street musicians played early in the morning as it disturbs her mother, a woman confined to a wheelchair and suffering from a wavering sense of reality. Liu Hulon has been recently handling routine easily solved cases in her job as a detective in China’s Ministry of Public Security. She is a Red Princess, wealthy and favored. Yet in the days of the Cultural Revolution she was sent into the countryside to learn from the peasants. It was hard brutal work, but as a child Liu Hulon was a true believer. Out of the blue, she receives a letter from her best friend on the farm, the woman’s daughter has died and the local police ruled it suicide. The distraught mother does not be-lieve the ruling, there was no investigation and her daughter had everything to live for; she was engaged to her childhood sweet-heart and working at an American factory. She was not a depressed woman contemplating suicide. Liu Hulon agrees to travel back to the desolate village that still haunts her childhood memories in order to check on the circumstances surrounding the death of her daughter’s friend. In San Francisco David Stark is not feeling as idealistically toward his role as a government prosecutor, when a job in the private sector offers him the opportunity to open an office Bejing, he accepts, his private agenda being reunited with Liu Hulon. Ironically, one of David’s clients is the owner of the factory that employed the daughter of Liu Hulon’s friend. As the case progresses, Liu Hulon decides to go underground, something about this American factory rouses her attention. Both David Stark and Liu Hulon’s boss protest against this action. Liu Hulon is not deterred by the concerns of her superior or of taking an action that would put her on opposite sides from David. As she immerses herself in the investigation, she is also challenged by the actions in her past. This series gives a great look at the differences between China and the US, introduces very interesting protagonists, and tells good mysteries. Dragon Bones concludes the trilogy. All three have much to recommend them.— Deon Stonehouse
“See paints a fascinating portrait of a complex and enigmatic society, in which nothing is ever quite as it appears, and of the people, peasant and aristocrat alike, who are bound by its subtle strictures.”—San Diego Union-Tribune
While David Stark is asked to open a law office in Beijing, his lover, detective Liu Hulan, receives an urgent message from an old friend imploring her to investigate the suspicious death of her daughter, who worked for a toy company about to be sold to David’s new client, Tartan Enterprises.
Despite David’s protests, Hulan goes undercover at the toy factory in the rural village of Da Shui, deep in the heart of China. It is a place that forces Hulan to face a past she has long been running from. Once there, rather than finding answers to the girl’s death, Hulan unearths more questions, all of which point to possible crimes committed by David’s client. Suddenly Hulan and David find themselves on opposing sides: One of them is trying to expose a company and unearth a killer, while the other is ethically bound to protect his client. As pressures mount and danger increases, Hulan and David uncover universal truths about good and evil, right and wrong–and the sometimes subtle lines that distinguish them.
Praise for The Interior
“[See] illuminates tradition and change, Western and Eastern cultural differences. . . . All this in the middle of her thriller which is also about greed, corruption, abuse of the disadvantaged, the desperation of those on the bottom of the food chain, and love.”—The Tennessean
“Sophisticated . . . graceful . . . See’s picture of contemporary China’s relationship with the United States is aptly played out through her characters.”—Los Angeles Times
“Immediate, haunting and exquisitely rendered.”—San Francisco Chronicle
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.