I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
The Woman in the Camphor Trunk
Los Angeles, 1908. In Chinatown, the most dangerous beat in Los Angeles, police matron Anna Blanc and her former boyfriend, Detective Joe Singer, discover the body of a white missionary woman, stuffed in a trunk in the apartment of her Chinese lover. Her lover has fled. If news gets out that a white woman was murdered in Chinatown, there will be a violent backlash against the Chinese. Joe and Anna plan to solve the crime quietly and keep the death a secret. So does good-looking Mr. Jones, a prominent Chinese leader who has mixed feelings about helping the LAPD and about Anna.
Meanwhile, the Hop Sing tong has kidnapped two slave girls from the Bing Kong tong, fueling existing tensions. They are poised on the verge of a bloody tong war that would put all Chinatown resi...
Anna Blanc is back in The Woman in the Camphor Trunk. The police matron with the most still delights with her antics and stubbornness.
I read book 1 and 2 consecutively, but writing this review makes me miss Anna already and I can’t wait for more in the series. In this installment Anna finds her self solving a murder in Chinatown. Amidst a gang war that is going on, Anna defies all again in order to bring justice to the victim.
Her relationship with Joe is still a little loopy. Yes, they are still on again off again and it’s always something. Normally, I would find that annoying, but for some reason it just works.
She’s a character who knows what she wants and is not afraid to go after it. And she’s not letting a man stop her from fulfilling her goals.
“She would give up anything, except her independence, to have him, because, for the first time, Anna was the mistress of her own destiny. She could go where she pleased, do what she pleased, and she paid a terrible price for it.”
Joe on the other hand, is a little bit more free with his emotions this time. I liked that revelation.
“You make me crazy, Sherlock, but I don’t know what I’d do if anything ever happened to you. I need you in the world. Do you understand?”
For once what he says makes me swoon. I love their little arguments.
Again, there are some really great characters that interact with Anna. But nothing compares to Madame Lulu from book 1. She should totally become a regular.
There’s a little Easter Egg that I noticed from each book and that they both end with the same sentence. I won’t give it away, but it was a pretty cool find. Wonder if that continues throughout the whole series.
I would recommend reading The Secret Life of Anna Blanc (book 1) first.