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New York private eye Lydia Chin gets no respect. Not from her mother, who wishes she'd settle down with a nice Chinese husband; not from her patronizing brother Tim, counsel to Chinatown Pride, whose museum has been robbed of two crates of porcelains; not from Trouble, the dai lo of the Golden Dragons, who tells her he's sublet the protection franchise for Chinatown Pride's corner to the Main Street Boys (but then why haven't the Boys demanded their monthly payoff?.) and then kicks her into a pile of garbage; and certainly not from the police, especially when they find out that she's hooked up two homicides -- a Golden Dragon who probably pulled off the theft and a porcelain expert at the uptown Kurtz Museum -- to the missing pieces without letting them in on the secret. Despite her Chinatown contacts and the hard work she puts in with her sometime partner (and sometime romantic partner) Bill Smith, Lydia's consistently behind the curve: first she doesn't know she's being followed, and then she doesn't know why or by whom; she doesn't know that the dead Golden Dragon had a close connection to Chinatown Pride, or that the dai lo of the Main Street Boys has a close connection to her; and she has no idea how many times, by how many different thieves, those porcelains have been stolen. There are so many culprits, in fact, that you may feel you're reading an Oriental remake of Murder on the Orient Express. But Rozan's fast-moving first novel presents her Asian-American cast and their world with a delicacy that goes far beyond local color.

Pub Date: Oct. 21st, 1994
Page count: 256pp
Publisher: St. Martin's