"Lydia Chin, a Chinese-American P.I. who lives in New York City's Chinatown, is hired for a simple job. She's to deliver the ransom for a set of stolen sketches that comprise the inaugural collection of fashion designer Genna Jing and her new label, Mandarin Plaid. But everything on this simple job goes terribly wrong." "The ransom is stolen out from under Lydia, her sometimes partner, Bill Smith, is arrested, and just as she is trying to sort out exactly what is really going on, the client fires her. Lydia, however, isn't about to just let it go. Determined to find answers, and preserve her pride, Lydia and Bill follow a confusing trail that leads from the sweatshops of Chinatown to the drawing rooms of Manhattan's wealthy Upper East Side and into a dark underworld of prostitution, drugs, and murder. All they need to uncover is: who stole the sketches, who hijacked the ransom payment, and, most important, who would kill to keep them from the truth."--BOOK JACKET.Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved
Private investigators Lydia Chin and Bill Smith enter the world of New York's high-fashion business, hired by aspiring designer Genna Jing when the sketches for her first solo show are stolen and held for a $50,000 ransom. Lydia makes the drop while Bill waits to follow whoever picks up the envelope--only neither one anticipated that Lydia would be shot at and that the money would disappear in the ensuing confusion. Thus begins an extremely convoluted and fast-paced plot that takes Lydia and Bill from Chinatown sweatshops to very "in" clubs frequented by models and drug dealers. Along the way, Lydia struggles with her brothers' habit of treating her as the "little sister" to be protected, her mother's repeated attempts at matchmaking, and her own feelings about Bill and where their relationship is headed. The first installment in this series was impressive; subsequent ones just keep getting better and better. Don't miss this one. (Reviewed Sept. 15, 1996)0312146744Stuart Miller
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review
Rozan (Concourse, 1995) puts a unique spin on her mysteries that plumb New York City's Chinese-American milieu and feature petite PI Lydia Chin and her tough sometimes-partner, Bill Smith. Lydia's brother Andrew recommends her to rising fashion designer Genna Jing, whose sketches for her exclusive debut collection, "Mandarin Plaid," have been stolen. Genna hires Lydia to deliver the ransom demanded for the drawings; as Lydia makes the drop, someone shoots at her; in the ensuing turmoil the money disappears. Genna suspects her former fashion-show producer, Wayne Lewis, is behind the theft; but when Lydia and Bill go to interview him, they learn he's been murdered. Genna's boyfriend, John Ryan, fires Lydia and Bill. Suspicious of his motives, they begin their own investigation, which leads into the dark underside of fashion modeling, rife with drug addiction and prostitution. Although the plot is made murky by too many red herrings, Rozan, as usual, creates a fully realized Manhattan populated with memorable characters: John Ryan's manipulative mother; Ed Everest, a pimp posing as a model's agent; Genna's elusive sister Dawn; Roland Lum, a boyhood friend of Lydia's brothers who suddenly shows interest in her; Bill's hulking police nemesis with the unforgettable name Det. Harry Krch; and Lydia's endearing mother, forever hoping for a son-in-law. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved