Beijing China Thrillers by Peter May
Also known as the China Thrillers, the Beijing series is a series of crime fiction novels by Scottish novelist Peter May. The series teams up an American pathologist, Margaret Campbell, who is down on her luck and a Chinese detective, Li Yan. In order to research these novels, Peter May made several trips to China and met with forensic pathologists and homicide detectives. In honour of his work on this series, May was made an honourary member of the Beijing Chapter of the Crime Writers’ Association.

Peter May began his China Thrillers series in 1999 with the novel The Firemaker. The series ran for six novels, concluding in 2004 with the novel Chinese Whispers. Below is a list of Peter May’s China Thriller novels in order of when the books were first released (which is also their chronological order):

Publication Order of Beijing/China Thriller Books


The Firemaker(1999) Best Hardcover PriceBest Paperback PriceBest Kindle Price
The Fourth Sacrifice(2000) Best Hardcover PriceBest Paperback PriceBest Kindle Price
The Killing Room(2000) Best Hardcover PriceBest Paperback PriceBest Kindle Price
Snakehead(2002) Best Hardcover PriceBest Paperback PriceBest Kindle Price
The Runner(2003) Best Hardcover PriceBest Paperback PriceBest Kindle Price
Chinese Whispers(2004) Best Hardcover PriceBest Paperback PriceBest Kindle Price

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Beijing/China Thrillers Synopses: The Firemaker is the first of the China Thrillers by Peter May. Margaret Campbell is a forensic pathologist from Chicago who is looking to escape her troubled life in the United States, so she cautiously accepts a job teaching at a police university in Beijing. Once she gets there, she accidentally knocks a senior detective, Li Yan, off his bike. After that rough start, the two are teamed up in order to track down a killer and unravel a conspiracy.

The third novel in the China Thrillers series is entitled The Killing Room. When mutilated bodies of 18 women are found in a mass grave in Shanghai, Li Yan is trying to find out if any of these killings are connected to some in Beijing. Once Margaret arrives, she learns that Mei-Ling is looking to compete with Margaret over Li.

In Snakehead (book four of the series), Margaret Campbell returns home when a truck turns up with full of dead Chinese people. Now an ambassador in D.C., Li Yan is then dispatched to find out what happened to his countrymen, but gets stuffed into a refrigerator.

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