Ten stories of Macabre Mystery by the creator of the famous Dr. Fu Manchu. Includes the excellent ghost story Tcheriapin and a creeping hand story called The Hand of Mandarin Qung.
"Take him back," he ordered.
Jim Poland being returned to his cell, Kerry, as the door closed behind the prisoner and his guard, stared across at Durham where he stood beside the table.
"An old hand," he said. "But there's another way." He glanced at the officer in charge. "Hold him till the morning. He'll prove useful."
From his waistcoat pocket he took out a slip of chewing gum, unwrapped it, and placed the mint-flavoured wafer between his large white teeth. He bit upon it savagely, settled his hat upon his head, and, turning, walked toward the door. In the doorway he paused.
"Come with me, Durham," he said. "I am leaving the conduct of the case entirely in your hands from now onward."
Detective Durham looked surprised and not a little anxious.
"I am doing so for two reasons," continued the Chief Inspector. "These two reasons I shall now explain."
THE SECRET TREASURE-HOUSE
Unlike its sister colony in New York, there a
Sax Rohmer's Chinatown stories have beem a guilty pleasure for years. Sad that he always gets the blame, unfairly, for the "yellow peril" paranoia but, in fact, Jack London did far more to stoke it up with ""The Unparalleled Invasion" published in 1914. Rohmer's view of the Chinese was pretty benign compared with London's; who thought China should be sanitized or cleansed of all Chinamen, with China repopulated by civilized white Americans!
Well, the author is hard on oriental
cultures, but that is a flaw of the times, specially on pulp fiction.
He is NOT as hard on the chinese as
R. Sabatini is on the Spanish.
Besides, considering how dumb the heroes, the police, and the british in general are portrayed, one might
say Sax Rohmer is hard on the british, too...
Also, Sax Rohmer has much more imagination and style than Sabatini.
These mysteries arent difficult to solve. The only people in the stories are the detective, the victim and the villains. No bother with any red herrings here. The stories are remarkable for shameless racism and hatred of the Chinese. If a Chinese person didnt happen to do it and is killed, it is seen as justified capital punishment without the expensive red tape of a trial. All the Chinese are sneaky caricatures in this writer's world. If it werent for the peek through the window into the prejudice of another era, these would be of no interest to me. The term 'oppression document' might well have been coined to describe this book.