** When Red Is Black by Qiu Xialolong

When Red Is Black is a rather mundane crime investigation into the murder of a dissident Chinese writer, who used to be a devoted Red Guard but switched to the other side. What sets the book apart is the setting, a communal building in modern Shanghai where the Iron Bowl government jobs can no longer compete with the riches of capitalism. The story is heavily laced with expositions of recent and not-so-recent Chinese history, which to me felt overly heavy and didactic. I enjoyed the nuanced characters of the detective and his superior, however.

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1 Comment

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One response to “** When Red Is Black by Qiu Xialolong

  1. Pingback: ** Death of a Red Heroine by Qiu Xiaolong | FT's Books

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