David Rotenberg

The Shanghai MurdersThe Shanghai Murders

Homicide Detective Zhong Fong has been attempting to put his life back together following the death of his actress wife and unborn child.  He immerses himself in his work, only to be assigned to a grisly new case with a murderer unappetizingly nicknamed the "Dim Sum Killer."

Body parts of an American police officer from New Orleans are found in a heavily trafficked alley, arranged in a bizarre and puzzling manner.  The murder appears to be the work of a trained assassin with a deadly message to convey.  And it isn't long before he leaves another message: The body of an African diplomat is found as skillfully carved up as the first.

Fong's concentration on the case is disrupted by the arrival of his late wife's former lover, who has returned to direct Shakespeare's Twelfth Night, along with the arrival of the first victim's widow.  She quickly becomes his responsibility and his friend.  Soon, the unlikely pair find themselves the next targets of the cold-blooded killer, and Fong must confront both his past and his future in the hunt for the murderer.

Rotenberg breathes life into modern-day Shanghai with its sights, sounds, and even smells, and creates a cast of unusual and memorable characters.  In addition, the author, a director and university drama teacher, adds a fascinating and unusual dimension to the story through a character's vivid explanations of a professional's philosophy on the art of acting Shakespeare.

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