I wish I was more culturally educated - I enjoyed the mystery but the names were hard for me to keep track of since they were so unfamiliar. I generally do not have this problem with Thai or Vietnamese names and never with Japanese names but for some reason I had a real problem here. I was also distracted many times by the brutality of the many "revolutions" the various factions put their people through - it seemed as though the Chinese have no empathy or sympathy for their own countrymen - even those factions that purport to be for the people do nothing to make their lives better and every damned thing to makes lives miserable, frightened and just plain horrible. It's a real problem for me to get past what seems to me to be blatant stupidity and the actions of the powerless who are finally in positions of power and use that power only to pick on everyone else. Anyway, the story was interesting and I suppose the detective was good but I'll probably skip any future books in this series.
The first book in the Mei Wang Mystery series
What at first starts as a search for an antique jade seal becomes dangerous when PI Mei Wang finds clues that lead her to investigate her own family
Beijing-born author Diane Wei Liang wonderfully evokes the chaotic setting and complex culture of modern China. The relationships between Mei and her family and friends are also very well developed. Liang's writing style combines dialogue that moves the story forward with lyrical passages: "Night was like a magic brush, blacking out all the ugliness so that the hour of love and longing could unfold."
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