Another Review at MyShelf.Com

Emperor Fu-Manchu
Fu-Manchu Series - Book XIII
Sax Rohmer

Titan Books
18 September 2015 / ISBN 9780857686152

Reviewed by Rachel A Hyde


American Agent Tony McKay has a reason to hate the Communists -- they killed his father -- and he is just the man Sir Denis Nayland Smith needs for a daring mission. Passing easily for Chinese, he is sent undercover to a remote district of Northern China to find out why there appear to be zombies wandering around. , The Cold Men are Dr Fu-Manchu's latest experiment, and soon Tony finds himself in jail and in trouble. But what are the Russians up to?

The Yellow Peril rides again! Fu-Manchu first appeared in print in 1913 and has appeared in film, TV and more ever since. Now Titan Books are reissuing Rohmer's books for a new generation; what do they have to offer modern readers? Plenty of well-paced excitement for one thing, as only writers of an earlier era knew how to produce. There is no introspection, here just the characters getting on with their missions in exotic locations, albeit with a dash of romance and a fantastic element. This makes the book a real retro read, relaxing and exciting all in one with nothing to hold up the plot or add a touch of melancholy, a great choice for a winter night. This entry in the series is set in 1959 during the Cold War but, has many parallels with modern current affairs from germ warfare to the involvement of China and Russia on the world's stage. Some modern readers might worry that these books are racist, but it is important to remember that they are not historical novels written for modern tastes but reprints of books published many years ago. Fu Manchu and some of his minions are villains, but there are plenty of good Chinese characters. Book thirteen in the series is not the best place to start reading these pulp classics, but the character of Fu Manchu is so well known many readers will already know what to expect. Better though to go back and read through the whole series for the treat that it is.

Reviews of other titles in this series

The Mystery of Dr. Fu-Manchu
Emperor Fu-Manchu


Reviewed 2015