BLOG TOUR REVIEW - City of Shadows by M J Lee

A family has been found murdered in the heart of 1920s Shanghai. But what could have compelled them to open the door to their killer?

Inspector Danilov has always taken a unique approach to solving his cases. So, when he’s asked to investigate the violent death of a fellow police officer, killed in action, he doesn’t think twice about turning his attention to a different case altogether: the brutal murder of the Lee family, found massacred in their own home.

How could the deaths of an ordinary family account for a shooting halfway across the city? And what clues lie with the letter found clasped in the dead girl’s hand? Inspector Danilov’s instincts tell him he’s close. But when the investigation reveals deep corruption at Shanghai’s core, Danilov faces a choice: probe further, and expose the evil underbelly of the city? Or shy from duty…and keep the few people he loves safe?

This is my first novel by M J Lee and the second in the Inspector Danilov series.

Beautifully set during the 1920's in Shanghai, a city that is melting pot of culture and crime.

Like all good stories we have the main storyline which involves the murder of the Lee family who have been brutally executed within their own home. Inspector Danilov finds himself involved with cracking this case.

Danilov starts to investigate the murders of the family even though it is not technically his case, together with his fellow officer Strachan they try to solve this horrific crime.

A nice touch is the parallel storylines in the background which include Danilov's search for his missing wife and son as well as his relationship with his daughter who has come to live with him.

As a setting, Shanghai at any point in time is a striking setting but the 20's setting is just perfect, the mixture of the characters backgrounds, Russian, Scottish, Chinese makes for an interesting combination.

This is a gripping story from start to finish and like all good crime novels is atmospheric with menacing bad guys and no clue of whodunnit till the end.

Thank you to Neverland Book Tours for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review.

Martin has spent most of his adult life writing in one form or another. As a University researcher in history, he wrote pages of notes on reams of obscure topics. As a social worker with Vietnamese refugees, he wrote memoranda. And, as the creative director of an advertising agency, he has written print and press ads, tv commercials, short films and innumerable backs of cornflake packets and hotel websites.
He has spent 25 years of his life working outside the North of England. In London, Hong Kong, Taipei, Singapore, Bangkok and Shanghai, winning awards from Cannes, One Show, D&AD, New York and London Festivals, and the United Nations.

Whilst working in Shanghai, he loved walking through the old quarter of that amazing city, developing the idea behind a series of crime novels featuring Inspector Pyotr Danilov, set in 1920s and 30s.

When he's not writing, he splits his time between the UK and Asia, taking pleasure in playing with his daughter, practicing downhill ironing, single-handedly solving the problem of the French wine lake and wishing he were George Clooney.

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Random Redheaded Ramblings


  1. So it's a series and different authors write the books? Interesting.


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