Available: 07/03/18
6.12 x 9.25 · 320 pages
CDN $32.50 · cl


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City of Devils

The Two Men Who Ruled the Underworld of Old Shanghai

Paul French


In a city of temptations unfolds an astonishing story of two men whose lives intertwine in both crime and a twisted friendship. The self-named Jack Riley with his acid-burnt fingertips finds a future in Shanghai as The Slots King, while Joe Farren, whose name was printed in neon across the Badlands, rises to fame and cashes in on Shanghai's sins.

Eyewitness accounts from moles at the Shanghai Municipal Police, letters home, and contemporary newspaper articles furnish this meticulously researched story where French takes you deep into those Badlands, grips you by the throat and doesn't let go. Through his carefully documented narrative, he brings to life extravagant music halls, bars, theatres, all this at a time of deep political unrest where Shanghai appears both intensely glamorous and depressingly seedy.

But of course, the bigger story is that of our two main protagonists, their ambition, dreams and ultimately, how they never quite got away with it.

PAUL FRENCH was born in London, educated there and in Glasgow, and has lived and worked in Shanghai for many years. His book Midnight in Peking was a New York Times Bestseller, a BBC Radio 4 Book of the Week, and will be made into an international mini-series by Kudos Film and Television, the UK creators of Broadchurch and Life on Mars.



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