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Dragon Bones (Red Princess Mysteries) [Audiobook] [Audio Cassette]

Lisa See , Laurence Bouvard
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Dec 2003 Red Princess Mysteries
A farmer finds a corpse floating near the mouth of the Yangtze River. This isn't the first time a body has washed up on his little piece of land. He's seen girl babies. He's seen young women. But this body, despite its badly decomposed state, is easily identified as a foreigner by its red hair. David Stark, international attorney, and Liu Hulan, inspector for the Ministry of Public Security in Beijing, are assigned to the murder investigation. However it soon becomes clear that this is more than a simple case of homicide. The victim, an American archaeologist, is just one of several similar casualties at archaeological sites along the Yangtze. What's more, priceless artefacts are disappearing from these same sites, only to reappear outside China on the world's art market. As David and Hulan pick their way through the complex maze of politics they come to realise that what is at stake is the safety of both their homelands. And that their shadowy enemy will stop at nothing to gain its mysterious prize - China's Dragon Bones.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product details

  • Audio Cassette
  • Publisher: ISIS Audio Books; Unabridged edition (Dec 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0753118750
  • ISBN-13: 978-0753118757
  • Product Dimensions: 23.6 x 16.3 x 6.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Product Description

From the Publisher

A compelling thriller set in themysterious heart of China. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Lisa See has been a journalist for many years writing for, among others, the LA Times, the Washington Post and Cosmopolitan, and was, until recently, the West Coast correspondent for Publishers Weekly. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unusal thriller and very emotive 12 Nov 2003
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This is third in the series written by Lisa See about David Stark, International Attorney and Liu Hulan, Inspector for the Ministry of Public Security in Beijing. The Flower Net, her first was so good and so unusual I have kept my eye out for the follow ups. Why unusual? Well not many thrillers are set in contemporary China and include a mix of eastern and western culture.
By book three, Stark and Hulan have married. The most captivating part of the plot is the discovery of what they have personally suffered over the last few years; and the question remains over them - can this pair get over it? The thriller part of the plot involves the building of the Three Gorges Dam, the theft and export of priceless artifacts from archaeological sites and the unwanted presence of a cult, the All-Patriotic Society.
See's books are so different because she brings you both the western and eastern eye of understanding of culture and the process of an investigation. Things are done differently in China, not least by Hulan herself.
Unlike with many thrillers and crime novels these days, I was definitely kept guessing until the full facts were disclosed. Her writing did not have quite the pace of The Flower Net, which lost the final star on such a good read. Expect more than one death, some gory moments and real gut wrenching emotion when you read it. And if you haven't read Lisa See before, I suggest you start with The Flower Net, follow it with The Interior and then read Dragon Bones. Stark and Hulan have an incredible life to journey through with See.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Unputdownable 1 Jan 2009
Format:Paperback
I first read Lisa See when I bought a copy of Snowflower and the Secret Fan; I considered it to be possibly the best book I had ever read. I was somewhat taken aback by Dragon Bones as it is ompletely different in every respect - time, location, style, pace, content. But, I was just as enthralled by the story-telling. Quite simply, this is one of those books you just don't want to end. It is a modern crime thriller set in the Three Gorges Dam project in China with some scenes in Hong Kong. It can be pretty brutal at times but is never less than fascinating. The central characters are well drawn and believable and the plot keeps you on your toes, never being predictable. In particular, Liu Hulan, the female inspector of The Ministry of Public Security in Beijing is a strong literary creation. This novel would make a good film and I have already cast Faye Wong in the role of the Inspector. Lisa See is a masterful (mistressful?) story teller. The book is very well written in good English - I mention this because Ms See is American/Chinese. I suspect that we may have a talented editor at Random House to thank for the good use of language.
To sum up; this is a compelling, complex, pacy thriller which never disappoints. Buy this book!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  56 reviews
63 of 66 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Suspense, Substance, and Skill 31 May 2003
By Virginia J. Tufte - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
It was nearly my bedtime when I picked up Lisa See's DRAGON BONES expecting to read for a half hour or so. But I was caught and I kept reading until after 3 a.m.Same thing the next night until I finished the novel.
I am not usually a fan of thrillers. A decaying body floating miles and miles on the Yangzi River, with minute details as to its progressive decomposition and mutilation, doesn't strike one as an enticing way to lead readers into a book. But in this case, it is. Lisa See artfully uses the body's journey to introduce the complex web of geography, history, myth, religion, as well as national and international politics, art, economics-and terrorism--in which her characters move.
See's sleuths, as in two earlier books, are an intriguing married couple, Inspector Liu Hulan of the Ministry of Public Security, native of Beijing, educated in the United States, and Lawyer David Stark, whom Liu first met while both were in law school in the United States. They are convincing and attractive, although their survival in some of their perilous undertakings is almost beyond belief. We share in their sometimes troubled relationship with each other as well as in their battles against evil forces and people.
Not one murder, but several, it turns out. One might wish that the final and bloodiest murder had been performed off-stage.
26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I loved it! 10 July 2003
By Alice - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Dragon Bones is Lisa See's third book featuring Inspector Liu Hulan and American Attorney David Stark. Several years have passed since the last book, The Interior, and during that time, our heroes have experienced much love, happiness, and a devastating loss. As See points out, the Chinese have a saying: "Things always change to the opposite". Soon after the novel begins, David and Hulan are sent on two separate assignments near the Three Gorges Dam: David is to investigate the theft of ancient artifacts, while Hulan is to investigate the murder of a promising, young American archaeologist.
With See's articulate, clear, and wonderfully descriptive writing style, Dragon Bones is well-paced and full of intrigue, making it a challenge to put down. Plot twists and murders constantly keep readers on their toes, demonstrating See's excellent skills as a storyteller.
One reason I've always enjoyed See's series is for the protagonists, David and Hulan. See has done a brilliant job creating in-depth, captivating characters with an interesting past. You can't help but care about them as they struggle to solve these crimes as well as mend their broken relationship. Sometimes we get a glimpse of David's perspective, while other times we get into Hulan's mind. This is one of my favorite aspects of See's writing--her ability to switch points of view subtly, yet so effectively. By getting into David's and Hulan's minds, it's evident that the two of them are meant for each other. But as the story progresses, readers will wonder if their relationship can survive after all the tragedies they have experienced. The answer is clear at the end of the novel.
Not only are some of the scenes extremely poignant, some are also very funny, particularly those involving the acerbic Pathologist Fong. And though this novel was entertaining, I also learned much, including Chinese culture, archaeology, and history of the Three Gorges Dam.
I would highly recommend this book!
28 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A dragon's tale. 5 Jun 2003
By Marcus A. Lewis - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
"Dragon Bones" is the third book in a series featuring Inspector Liu Hulan and her attorney husband David Stark. Five years have passed since the tragedy that punctuated "The Interior." And Hulan and David are still grappling with a personal crisis in their lives.
Hulan has become a fully realized character in this novel. Author See does some things with her that she has not done before. For the first time there is a feistiness about her. She has certainly become more assertive in her role as an inspector. She remains the only female in a world of law enforcement dominated by men.
Hulan's sexuality also comes into play in "Dragon Bones." There is a sassiness about the way she carries herself around a certain male character. She is put in more than one situation where she must walk a fine line between remaining faithful to her husband or cheating on him.
In the end, Hulan is able to exorcise her demons. All of her issues get washed away by the Yangzi River. And like Andy Dufresne, she comes out clean on the other side. Hulan has reinvented herself and in so doing has returned to the character we first met in the opening pages of "Flower Net." The author could not have written a better ending. She has effectively set the stage for the next installment in this series.
Lisa See's storytelling, like her character development, has improved since "Flower Net." The plot is tight and well conceived. We are thrust into the story when the first dead body shows up in the opening sentence of the prologue, unlike her previous novels where we had to wait for several pages.
In conclusion, Lisa See has once again opened up a world that most of us will never experience first hand. She doesn't just take us to contemporary China, she takes us off the beaten path. Like the caverns that are so much a part of this story, the country is an organic entity. It is at times an antagonist, and even when it isn't, it is never neutral. I am fully captivated by it.
We are not just entertained in "Dragon Bones," we are educated as well. And isn't that what a good novel is supposed to do?
30 of 33 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The best part of this book was the China setting 4 July 2006
By M. C. Crammer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This is a thriller/mystery set in China at an archeological dig. The detective Hulan, a Chinese woman married to David, an American lawyer, works for the state police and has been assigned the job of looking into the death of a young American man fished out of the Yangtze River. It is quickly determined who he is and where he must have come from (the archeological site), so she and her husband are sent there, although Hulan resists because she doesn't want to be taken away from her work investigating a religious cult. Hulan is asked to investigate the man's death, and David is asked to look into the possibility that relics from this site are finding their way illegally into art auctions. The place they're excavating is going to be flooded by the construction of a bigger-than-Hoover-Dam dam that will displace vast numbers of people. There is a rather large cast of characters, many of whom are staying at a Chinese guesthouse with Hulan and David. You get the impression that the murderer is either one of the people at the archeological dig or that one of these people knows what happened. A sub plot involve trouble in the marriage of David and Hulan.

I was enjoying this until the end, and then it just seemed too over-the-top. I thought it was much more violent than it needed to be or that made any sense to me. On the other hand, reading about China and the controversial damming of the Yangtze River was quite interesting.
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The perfect novel! 11 July 2006
By MLRapp - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
All of the ingredients were present to make Dragon Bones the perfect novel: the characters were so developed and complex they practically jumped off the page; the plot was multi-layered with interesting twists and turns; Lisa See's engaging writing style and pace made for an enjoyable read; and the depth of information about Chinese culture and way of life rounded out the storyline.

I would recommend this for anyone looking for a five star engrossing read that you just won't be able to put down.

I read one other book by the author, Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, which I also loved, and was impressed by how different this novel was, and yet how much I enjoyed it. Clearly, Ms. See is an extremely talented writer capable of tackling very different types of novels. I can't wait to read another of her books!
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