Monday, January 28, 2008


Dragon Bones, Lisa See, Random House Inc, 2003, 343 pp

Dragon Bones is the third of Lisa See's international thrillers. I have read the first, Flower Net, but not the second, The Interior. This volume again features Chinese Inspector Liu Hulan of the Ministry of Public Security and her American husband, attorney David Stark.

Apparently they had and lost a daughter in the second book, so now the marriage is falling apart because Liu cannot get over her grief nor can she forgive herself for letting another loved one die.

Nothing like a little mystery, danger and a trip out of town to turn their lives around. An American archaeologist has been murdered at the site of a huge dig where also China's largest project since the Great Wall will result in the Three Gorges Dam, providing electricity to millions but flooding ancestral ground and displacing millions.

Lots of issues here: ancient mythology, a current religious cult, art and artifacts with crooked dealings going on, international political tensions, not to mention love, greed and ecology. The author mostly pulls it off though I was confused at times since I know so little about China. Still a good story, intriguing mystery, though as usual See is low key on emotions. The book highly motivated me to learn more about China.

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