THE 12 MILLION COPY BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF THE LEWIS TRILOGY AND THE ENZO FILES
AWARD WINNING AUTHOR OF THE CWA DAGGER IN THE LIBRARY 2021
'Peter May is one of the most accomplished novelists writing today.' Undiscovered Scotland
'No one can create a more eloquently written suspense novel than Peter May.' New York Journal of Books
The first of Peter May's China critically acclaimed thrillers featuring Beijing detective Li Yan and American pathologist Margaret Campbell.
A grotesquely burned corpse found in a city park is a troubling mystery for Beijing detective Li Yan. Yan, devoted to his career as a means of restoring the respect his family lost during the Cultural Revolution, needs outside help if he is to break the case.
The unidentified cadaver in turn provides a welcome distraction for forensic pathologist Margaret Campbell. Campbell, married to her work and having left America and her broken past behind, throws herself into the investigation, and before long uncovers a bizarre anomaly.
An unlikely partnership develops between Li and Campbell as they follow the resulting lead. A fiery and volatile chemistry ignites: exposing not only their individual demons, but an even greater evil - a conspiracy that threatens their lives, as well as those of millions of others.
LOVED THE FIREMAKER? Read the second book in the series, THE FOURTH SACRIFICE
LOVE PETER MAY? Buy his new thriller, THE NIGHT GATE
This first novel in a series that has already includes six volumes in Britain, promises more fireworks than it delivers both as romance and as melodramatic murder mystery. The nascent romance between American forensic pathologist Margaret Campbell, in Beijing to deliver a series of guest lectures, and Chinese police detective Li Yan seems more doubtful than hot-blooded as they resist their unlikely attraction. Margaret's expertise in autopsies of burn victims proves valuable, but the beautiful blond pathologist, seeking a respite from her painful past, is unmindful of her host country's customs and sensibilities almost to the point of caricature. The taciturn Li Yan, on his first assignment after promotion to Deputy Section Chief, is intent on his career and first new case: a series of three murders linked only by a single dubious clue. May is most convincing in his vivid depiction of a dynamic China recovering from the damage of the Cultural Revolution. Unfortunately, the plot is too flimsy for the weight he piles on and the overblown consequences lack credibility. An anticlimactic conclusion hints at further adventures.