Peter May author of The China
Peter May
                author of The China Thrillers
Peter May author of The
                China Thrillers
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The China Thrillers

Meticulous research, compelling characters and ingenious plots are the trademarks of this highly original, entertaining and often controversial series.

These page-turning thrillers combine cutting edge science, drama, wit, and engaging characters who grow and develop across the books. The key to the popularity of this series is the tempestuous relationship between the enigmatic Chinese detective Li Yan, and Dr Margaret Campbell, the acerbic pathologist from Chicago.

Scotsman Peter May has been winning praise for his vibrant portrayal of contemporary Chinese life and attention to scientific and medical detail. He is the only westerner to be made an honorary member of the Chinese Crime Writers' Association.

May has been all over China and the USA to research his books and acknowledges the help given to him by the extraordinary people he has met. From the American Embassy in Beijing to the Chinese Embassy in Washington DC. From the Shanghai police mortuary and the Beijing homicide squad, to the FBI, the INS and the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology in the USA.

With an extensive network of contacts in China, he has gained unprecedented access to the homicide and forensic science sections of Beijing and Shanghai police forces to make a painstaking study of the methodology of Chinese detectives and pathologists.

Expert advisors from around the world, at the top of their chosen fields of genetics, science, forensic pathology and criminolgy ensure that the facts in his stories are accurate. May uses cutting edge science to provide a terrifying glimpse of what lies in store, from genetic modification in The Firemaker, to bio-terrorism in Snakehead.

Click here to read Peter's blog about the new paperback editions of The China Thrillers

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The Firemaker

The Firemaker gained plaudits for May's ability to produce a well-written, fast-paced crime thriller which takes the reader on a vivid journey through the backstreets of Beijing and behind the scenes of the Chinese Police system.  The Firemaker was shortlisted for French ELLE magazine for their Grand Prix in 2005.

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The Fourth Sacrifice

The sequel, The Fourth Sacrifice, moves from Beijing to the archeological treasure trove of Xian with its famous army of terracotta warriors and a story with its roots in the cultural revolution.

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The Killing Room

The Killing Room features the extraordinary setting of Shanghai where ancient barges ply their trade on the river under the shadow of some of the most futuristic architecture in the world.

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The fourth book, Snakehead, sees the action switching to Texas in the United States, where a story with its roots in people smuggling takes a terrifying turn.  Snakehead won the PRIX INTRAMUROS in 2007.  The Prix Intramuros is a French literary prize decided by juries of prisoners in French penitentiaries.

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The Runner

With the Olympic Games in Beijing, science fiction becomes fact. The Runner is a breathtaking thriller set behind the scenes in world-class athletics.

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Chinese Whispers

The sixth book in the series, Chinese Whispers, takes a turn from pathology to psychology and enters the world of lies, obfuscation, and lie detectors. Li Yan finds himself tracking a serial killer in Beijing obsessed with Jack the Ripper and intent on recreating his awful deeds.Meticulous research, compelling characters and ingenious plots are the trademarks of this highly original, entertaining and often controversial series.

Peter also wrote a short novella, The Ghost Marriage featuring Li Yan and Margaret Campbell for French publisher Hachette.  It was part of their English language series for learners of English.


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The Ghost Marriage is a short novella featuring Li Yan and Margaret Campbell.  It was written for a French publisher as part of an English language collection for students of English...
The Ghost Marriage