The Last Mandarin (Far East Trilogy, Book 2)
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An American soldier of fortune pursues a Japanese war criminal through the streets and alleyways of war-torn Peking in this edge-of-your-seat thrill ride from the author of The Chinese Bandit
Peking, 1948. In the midst of a brutal winter, the Communists tighten their stranglehold on the ancient capital, preparing to strike. Peasants starve, students riot, police crack down, and an entire city shivers on the edge of revolt.
A decade ago, Maj. Jack Burnham was an American civilian living in China when the Japanese invaded. Now, he has returned on a mission to capture a notorious war criminal before Peking falls to the Red Army. Kanamori Shoichi raped, murdered, and pillaged his way through China during World War II—he also broke Burnham's nose. If caught, Kanamori will be brought before a tribunal and made to pay for his crimes, large and small. But finding one man in a devastated city of millions is no simple task.
Luckily, Burnham has the help of a beautiful Chinese doctor eager to help her people find justice, as well as his own expert knowledge of the language and culture. But when he finally locates Kanamori, the showdown Burnham has sought for so long will be far stranger and more dangerous than he ever imagined.
The Last Mandarin is the 2nd book in the Far East Trilogy, but you may enjoy reading the series in any order.
at the ankle, and tattered cloth shoes bound to his feet by rags. His black hair hung lank. “One half an American dollar,” he said. “That is a great deal.” “It is a long trip on a cold day. Good grazing makes fast horses.” Burnham nodded. “It will do.” He stepped to the pedicab, a commodious double. “What!” cried one, and then all of them: “What! Hsüü! Madness! A trick!” One voice detached itself: “Why, sir, why?” Burnham settled in. “It is not a trick. I am honoring pride.” “Pride!” They
It was bad form to be abducted with hairy lips, an emery tongue and a head full of sawdust. “How did you enter?” Knife said, “The alleys and the window. One man’s out is another man’s in. Hsü! You are a big fellow.” “Who are you?” Better off without weapons. Do not stir up the natives. He would use his wits: a rare opportunity. “The scum of the earth,” Knife said. Burnham’s roll of bills seemed intact. “The hat,” said Knife. Burnham donned the fur hat. Knife grinned, and pricked Burnham’s
look.” “How could that be? My business is with you.” “So I have been told. And how do you know who I am?” “One divines the quality of a man,” Burnham said. “One senses leadership.” The rooster crowed briefly. “Also, you saw them look to me for permission.” “That too is true.” Burnham tried a friendly smile. “A blindfold would have sufficed. There was no need to slug me.” Head Beggar showed palm. “But what is life without dependable rituals? Who are you, after all? And what are you?” “I ask
Burnham said. “I do this for the dead swordsmen,” Kanamori chanted, and leaned into his work. The cart rumbled forward. “I do this for my mother, who was a daughter of Han. I do this for my father, in the village of Saito on the River Omono near Akita, who was a warrior.” Outside the gate, and into Rat’s Alley, Burnham said, “A brisk pace but no unseemly haste. You are a workingman doing a job.” “It is the job I do best. I am Kanamori Shoichi.” And I am Jack Burnham, and if this goes sour I
and smile for no man. Their villages are set in swales and dingles, tiny valleys off the ridges, and the entrances at either end are planted with dense thorny hedge, and the way in or out is crooked and winding. It was not always so. When the rifle came to these hills, men with swords, knives and even crossbows had to change their ways. No rifle can see through a Wild Wa hedge, and no bullet can wend the mazy way. The Wild Wa are a small people and dark, and so feared by their neighbors. Their