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Extended Audio Sample Dragon Bones, by Lisa See Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,563 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Lisa See Narrator: Janet Song Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Red Princess Mysteries Release Date:
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When the body of an American archaeologist is found floating in the Yangzi River, Ministry of Public Security agent Liu Hulan and her husband, American attorney David Stark, are dispatched to Site 518 to investigate. As Hulan scrutinizes this death—or is it a murder?—David, on behalf of the National Relics Bureau, tries to discover who has stolen from the site an artifact that may prove to the world China’s claim that it is the oldest uninterrupted civilization on earth.

This artifact is not only an object of great monetary value but one that is emblematic of the very soul of China. Everyone—from the Chinese government, to a religious cult, to an unscrupulous American art collector—wants this relic, and some, it seems, may be willing to kill to get it. At stake in this investigation is control of China’s history and national pride, and even stability between China and the United States.

The troubled Hulan must overcome her own fears of failure, while David tries desperately to break through the shell that has built up around his wife. As Hulan and David are enmeshed in international schemes for power and the turbulence of their own relationship, these hunters after the truth become the hunted—in a fast-driving narrative set against the backdrop of the building of the Three Gorges Dam, the largest and most expensive project China has undertaken since the Great Wall and the subject of great international debate. It is here, in the heart of the Three Gorges, that David and Hulan will battle their enemies and their own natures to see who will win China’s dragon bones.

Dragon Bones combines ancient myth with contemporary anxieties concerning religious fanaticism and terrorism to tell a story of love, betrayal, history, ecology, greed—and gory murder.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Stays with you long after the conventional thriller is forgotten.”

    Washington Post Book World

  • “Lisa See is one of the classier practitioners of…the international thriller…She draws her characters…with convincing depth, and offers up documentary social detail that reeks of freshly raked muck. See’s China is as vivid as Upton Sinclair’s Chicago.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “The novel flows beautifully, engaging readers in the mystery while gently introducing them to China’s rich cultural history…See does for Chinese antiquities what Elizabeth Peters did for the Dead Sea Scrolls in The Dead Sea Cipher.”

    Library Journal

  • “An exciting murder mystery…This book truly captures man’s constant desire for material gain, and one unusual detective’s goal to right the wrongs in her world.”

    Colorado Springs Independent

  • “See succeeds in widening the reader’s knowledge about the politics and culture of contemporary China while racing along with an absorbing story.”

    Publishers Weekly

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Carrol | 2/17/2014

    " I have come to really enjoy Lisa See's books. This is the second one I have read. (Snow Flower and the Secret Fan being the other one.) Both book are set in China - Snow Flower in the 19th century and Dragon Bones in the early part of the 21st century. Dragon Bones is a "Red Princess" mystery. This mystery is set along the Yangzi River and also explores a number of the issues relating to the controversial Three Gorges Dam construction as well as some of the current political and social issues of 21st century China. If you have any interest in China and also enjoy a mystery, I would recommend reading this book. There are apparently 2 earlier "Red Princess" mysteries and their plots are alluded to several times throughout the novel. I found most of the characters interesting and didn't figure out the solution to the mystery until very near the end of the book. I found this book of personal interest as we had traveled in China and the Three Gorges/Yangzi area approximately the same time as the book setting. Warning: you do need to be aware that the final murder is described rather graphically. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Joseph Street | 2/9/2014

    " The most interesting (and best-written) of the three in the Red Princess series "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Trish | 2/9/2014

    " This was a great book. I read it out of order though. It had a lot of fascinating information about Chinese culture and history. It was a great mystery/thriller, too. I can't wait to read her other books. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Ellie | 2/2/2014

    " I like this series. It has a lot of information about Chinese society and politics. "

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