When Red is Black by Qiu Xiaolong

When Red is Black

Qiu Xiaolong

The third of the Inspector Chen crime series concentrates more on life in 1990s Shanghai than on murder, as characters try to come to terms with Deng's economic revolution replacing Mao's cultural one. Recommended as truly out of the ordinary, with a gentle pace which allows the expat author to include poems (some) and recipes (lots).

Extract

When Yu had first entered the police force, his objective was a clear one: to do better than his father, Old Hunter, who, though a capable policeman, never rose higher than sergeant in rank .... As a detective, he was one notch higher, but he did not feel nearly as good as Old Hunter used to feel.

Parallels
  • Death of a Red Heroine by Qiu Xiaolong
  • The Wallet of Kai Lung by Ernest Bramah
  • Mao: the Unknown Story by Jung Chang