The Crime Fiction Alphabet: X is for Xiaolong, Qiu Xiaolong


Esta entrada es bilingüe, desplazarse hacia abajo para ver la versión en castellano.

The Alphabet in Crime Fiction, hosted by Kerrie at Mysteries in Paradise, has arrived this week to letter X. You can click HERE to find out the contributions of other fellow participants, please do visit their blogs. I’m sure that you will find out some interesting books to read.

My X is for Xiaolong. Qiu Xiaolong (1953) was born in Shanghai, China, and, since 1988, has lived in St. Louis, Missouri. A poet and a translator, he has an MA and a Ph.D. from Washington University. He is the author of Inspector Chen series (an Inspector with the Shanghai Police Bureau), including the award-winning Death of a Red Heroine (2000), A Loyal Character Dancer(2002), When Red Is Black(2004), A Case of Two Cities (2006),Red Mandarin Dress (2007), The Mao Case (2009), and Don’t Cry Tai Lake (due August 30, 2011).

He has also published a non-series book,Years of Red Dust: Stories of Shanghai (2010), two books of poetry translations, Treasury of Chinese Love Poems (2003) and Evoking T’ang(2007), and his own poetry collection, Lines Around China(2003).

You can find HERE my review of Death of a Red Heroine, winner of the 2001 Anthony Award for Best First Novel, and a finalist for the 2001 Barry Award for Best First Novel and the 2001 Edgar Award for Best First Novel. At some stage I expect to read the next books in the series.

One of the aspects that interested me most of his books is that they refer to police work under a totalitarian regime, and in this sense analysing the relationship that may exist with other authors, such as Ernesto Mallo, Carlo Lucarelli or Pétros Markaris among others, whose main character, is carried out or it has been carried out under a totalitarian regime.

For additional information visit:

Surfing on the Internet, I came across this article on the history of crime fiction in China, which I hope you will find interesting.

El Alfabeto del Crimen: X es por Xiaolong, Qiu Xiaolong

El alfabeto del crimen, organizado por Kerrie en Mysteries in Paradise, llega esta semana a la letra “X”. Puede hacer clic AQUÍ para ver las aportaciones del resto de participantes, por favor visite sus blogs. Estoy seguro de que se encontrará con algunas recomendaciones interesantes.

Mi X es por Xiaolong. Qiu Xiaolong nació en Shanghai en 1953 y vivió en esa ciudad hasta 1966, año en que se trasladó a Estados Unidos. En la actualidad vive en St. Louis, Missouri, en cuya universidad imparte clases. Poeta y traductor al chino de clásicos norteamericanos, es sobre todo conocido por la serie de novelas policiacas protagonizadas por el inspector jefe Chen Cao, cuyo primer título Muerte de una heroína roja (2000) fue galardonado con el Premio Anthony a la Mejor Primera Novela y finalista del Premio Edgar. El resto de los títulos de la serie, publicados hasta el momento en España, son Visado para Shanghai (2002), Cuando el rojo es negro (2004), El caso de las dos ciudades (2006), Seda roja (2007) y El caso Mao (2009).

Uno de los aspectos que más me ha interesado de sus libros es que se refieren a la labor de la policía bajo un régimen totalitario y, en este sentido, analizar la relación que pueda existir con otros autores como Ernesto Mallo, Carlo Lucarelli o Pétros Markaris entre otros, cuyo protagonista también desarrolla o ha desarrollado su actividad bajo un régimen totalitario.

8 thoughts on “The Crime Fiction Alphabet: X is for Xiaolong, Qiu Xiaolong”

  1. Good choice, Jose Ignacio 😉 I have only read the first of these, but I agree with you that one of the most interesting aspects, if not the most, was the way a crime is investigated within a totalitarian/corrupt regime. Fascinating war of wits.

    1. Thanks for your comment Maxine. I just notice that I have not mention corrupt regimes after totalitariam, probably because all totalitariam regimes are corrupt. But its good to point it out, since not all corrupt regimes are totalitariam.

  2. José Ignacio – I like your choice! One of the things I find interesting about Qiu Xiaolong is that he has written in more than one genre. As you mention in your excellent summary, he is also a poet. I think that when an author writes in more than one genre, that has an influence on his or her writing in both (or all) of the genres.

  3. This one sounds like a good choice for the global reading challenge. I am not good at challenging myself by reading books from other parts of the world so I often think that my own challenge is just perfect for ME.

    1. Certainly you have encouraged us all to read books from everywhere in the world.and I’m most grateful to you for that Dorte, besides it’s been fun.

  4. Jose Ignacio – I think of it as a happy coincidence that we each picked Xiaolong for “X”. I read your review of “Death of a Red Heroine”. It is a good review. I must admit I was glad you liked the book. It is not often that an author can combine a mystery with a picture of a whole society in which the mystery is set.

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