Sarah Brandt has made her uneasy way to Chinatown to deliver a baby. There she meets a group of Irish women who, completely alone at Ellis Island, married Chinese men in the same predicament. But even as a new century dawns, New Yorkers still cling to their own kind, scorning children of mixed races.
When the new mother’s half-Chinese, half-Irish niece goes missing, Sarah knows that alerting the police will accomplish nothing, and seeks the one person she can turn to-Detective Sergeant Malloy.
And when the missing girl is found dead in a Chinatown alley, Sarah and Malloy have ample suspects in her murder-from both sides of Canal Street.
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Murder in Chinatown is the 9th novel in the Gaslight mystery series and I love this series! I love reading about what adventures and murders Sarah gets herself involved with. Also I have never read anything about the turn of the century so I love the historical aspect.
It’s interesting to make comparisons between today’s society and what society was like over 100 years ago. Sadly there are things that haven’t changed. In this novel, Sarah is open and honest about what the situation is like for the Chinese who have immigrated to the US. Only Chinese men are allowed to come over to work in the United States. They are treated as second class citizens even though in some situations they are making good money, even better than white immigrants.
Because of the lack of Chinese women, Chinese men are marrying Irish women and having mixed babies. These children are not treated as Irish or Chinese since neither society will accept them as they are not fully 100% of a certain race.
Thankfully we have Sarah. Even though she is well aware of the stereotypes, she ignores them and helps deliver babies regardless of what the situation is. In this novel, a Irish woman is giving birth and after the birth, an Irish-Chinese young woman goes missing and eventually is found dead. Obviously there is a lot of tension between the Irish and the Chinese, each pointing to the other as the murderer.
I enjoyed the mystery more than previous novels since I didn’t guess who the killer was. Thompson did a great job throwing in a number of suspects who each had a reason for killing the young woman.
4 calculators out of a potential 5. If you haven’t heard of this series, I would highly recommend it!