When the body of an American archaeologist is found floating in the Yangzi River, Ministry of Public Security agent Liu Hulan and her husband, American attorney David Stark, are dispatched to Site 518 to investigate. As Hulan scrutinizes this death—or is it a murder?—David, on behalf of the National Relics Bureau, tries to discover who has stolen from the site an artifact that may prove to the world China’s claim that it is the oldest uninterrupted civilization on earth.
This artifact is not only an object of great monetary value but one that is emblematic of the very soul of China. Everyone—from the Chinese government, to a religious cult, to an unscrupulous American art collector—wants this relic, and some, it seems, may be willing to kill to get it. At stake in this investigation is control of China’s history and national pride, and even stability between China and the United States.
The troubled Hulan must overcome her own fears of failure, while David tries desperately to break through the shell that has built up around his wife. As Hulan and David are enmeshed in international schemes for power and the turbulence of their own relationship, these hunters after the truth become the hunted—in a fast-driving narrative set against the backdrop of the building of the Three Gorges Dam, the largest and most expensive project China has undertaken since the Great Wall and the subject of great international debate. It is here, in the heart of the Three Gorges, that David and Hulan will battle their enemies and their own natures to see who will win China’s dragon bones.
Dragon Bones combines ancient myth with contemporary anxieties concerning religious fanaticism and terrorism to tell a story of love, betrayal, history, ecology, greed—and gory murder.
©2004 Lisa See (P)2010 Random House
“Mixing history, myths, and current events, Dragon Bones is an extraordinarily rich novel. It reveals the emotional and economical entanglement of China with the West, and tells a story of violence, lust, greed, fear, and desperation. The novel not only is a page-turner but is also timely.” (Ha Jin, author of Waiting and The Crazed)
"See succeeds in widening the reader's knowledge about the politics and culture of contemporary China while racing along with an absorbing story." (Publishers Weekly)
Dragon Bones, the third of Lisa See's thrillers starring Detective Hulan, left me wanting more. The story, set in in the Three Gorges in interior China, entertwines Chinese history, mythology and intrigue with religious fanaticism, deceit and murder. I was fascinated by the characters and was surprised as the story came to together in the final chapters.
Many mysteries are predictable - this one is not!
Interesting concept using two detectives of different nationalities, who love each other, but have to deal with restrictions and blockages of the Chinese government. New approach to political interventions in crime.
Well written. A good story which gives you additional things to think about.
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