Bat Wing

Cover image for


Author: Sax Rohmer (Arthur Henry Sarsfield Ward)
Published: 1920
Language: English
Wordcount: 83,863 / 249 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 73.4
LoC Category: PR
Downloads: 4,392 5982

The first book of the Paul Harley detective series, featuring voodoo, vampirism, and murder in central London.

Show Excerpt

suspicions are not quite groundless?"

"There is a distinct possibility that they are more than suspicions," agreed Harley; "but may I suggest that there is something else? Have you an enemy?"

"Who that has ever held public office is without enemies?"

"Ah, quite so. Then I suggest again that there is something else."

He gazed keenly at his visitor, and the latter, whilst meeting the look unflinchingly with his large dark eyes, was unable to conceal the fact that he had received a home thrust.

"There are two points, Mr. Harley," he finally confessed, "almost certainly associated one with the other, if you understand, but both these so--shall I say remote?--from my life, that I hesitate to mention them. It seems fantastic to suppose that they contain a clue."

"I beg of you," said Harley, "to keep nothing back, however remote it may appear to be. It is sometimes the seemingly remote things which prove upon investigation to be the most intimate."

"Very well," resumed Colonel Menendez, beginnin


Average Rating of 4.4 from 5 reviews: *****
Kathleen Noonan

Could not put it down. Very exciting and fun to read.


I absolutely loved this book. It's the kind of page turner that keeps you up late at night. This was my first Sax Rohmer book and so far my favorite.

Al Otto

This romp through a turn-of-the-century mystery with all the attendant mores withholds the real problem until the very end. It is written the the Holmes/Watson style and makes enjoyable reading. I was pleased to see that there were not voodoo rites throughout--that would have made the book tiresome.

Linda Otto

Only so-so. I liked Fire Tongue much better, I guess because it continues the Oriental flavor of the Fu Manchu series more than does Bat Wing. Also--Bat wing seemed to be no mystery to me at all. I had it figured out very early in the book and the rest was nothing more than verification.

C. Alan Loewen

Bat Wing is the prequel to Fire Tongue and is a welcome introduction to the character of Paul Harley, an English consulting detective, more along the literary lines of Poe's C. Auguste Dupin than Doyle's Sherlock Holmes.

This well-written mystery deals with Haitian Voodoo, the death sign of a bat wing, and the lengths people will go through for vengeance.

Though Rohmer is best known for his literary arch villain Fu Manchu, the non-Fu Manchu stories are usually better written with more satisfying plots and more interesting characters. Bat Wing and its sequel are a worthy investment of time.

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