Midnight in Peking

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Penguin Random House Australia, Aug 23, 2011 - True Crime - 304 pages
4 Reviews
January, 1937: Peking is a heady mix of privilege and scandal, lavish cocktail bars and opium dens, warlords and corruption, rumours and superstition - and the clock is ticking down on all of it.

In the exclusive Legation Quarter, the foreigners are jumpy. Japanese troops are poised to attack, and word has it the Chinese government is about to cut a deal with Tokyo, leaving Peking to its fate. Fear reigns inside the ancient city walls, on one of which, not far from the nefarious Badlands, is a massive watchtower. Locals believe it to be haunted by fox spirits that prey upon innocent mortals.

Then one bitterly cold night, the body of an innocent mortal is dumped there. It belongs to the daughter of a former British consul, and when the details of her death become known, people find it hard to credit that any human could treat another in such a fashion. Even as the Japanese noose on the city tightens, this bizarre murder transfixes the people of Peking.

Seventy-five years after these events, Paul French finally gives the case the resolution it was denied, in a story that will make you hold your loves ones close . . .
Midnight in Peking haswon the 2013 CWA Dagger Award for Non-Fiction.

'An instant true crime classic which grips and hooks from the first page to the last.' David Peace, author of The Damned Utd

'Unputdownable . . . French's re-creation of the police investigation will have you enthralled.' Sydney Morning Herald

'A brilliantly evocative book.' The Sunday Age

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Review: Midnight In Peking

User Review  - Betsy Lewis-moreno - Goodreads

This is an interesting look at an unsolved murder from 1937 in Peking. The city is about to be invaded by the Japanese, but the expats are living it up. The 19 year old daughter of a Chinese scholar ... Read full review

Review: Midnight in Peking: How the Murder of a Young Englishwoman Haunted the Last Days of Old China

User Review  - Shay - Goodreads

Peking China in 1937 was in turmoil. Opium dens, prostitution, and superstitions were just the everyday concerns. The bigger reality was that the Japanese were gearing up to barge into the city and ... Read full review

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About the author (2011)

Born in London and educated there and in Glasgow, Paul French has lived and worked in Shanghai for many years. He is a widely published analyst and commentator on China and has written a number of books, including a history of foreign correspondents in China and a biography of the legendary Shanghai adman, journalist and adventurer Carl Crow.

His book Midnight in Peking was a New York Times Bestseller, a BBC Radio 4
Book of the Week, and will be made into an international miniseries by Kudos Film and Television, the UK creators of Spooks and Life on Mars.

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