Midnight in Peking
Paul French

Book cover image

Narrated By: Crawford Logan

Duration: 8 hours and 25 minutes

What to expect

The unabridged, downloadable audiobook edition of Paul French's Midnight in Peking, a gripping, true murder mystery story read by the actor Crawford Logan.

Who killed Pamela Werner?

On a frozen night in January 1937, in the dying days of colonial Peking, a body was found under the haunted watchtower. It was Pamela Werner, the teenage daughter of the city's former British consul Edward Werner. Her heart had been removed.

A horrified world followed the hunt for Pamela's killer, with a Chinese-British detective team pursuing suspects including a blood-soaked rickshaw puller, the Triads, and a lascivious grammar school headmaster. But the case was soon forgotten amid the carnage of the Japanese invasion... by all but Edward Werner. With a network of private investigators and informers, he followed the trail deep into Peking's notorious Badlands and back to the gilded hotels of the colonial Quarter.

Some 75 years later, deep in the Scotland Yard archives, British historian Paul French accidentally came across the lost case file prepared by Edward Werner. Unveiling an undercover sex cult, heroin addicts and disappearing brothels, the truth behind the crime can now be told - and is more disturbing than anyone could imagine.

Not just the unputdownable story of a savage murder, Midnight in Peking is a sweepingly evocative account of the end of an era.

Genre

True crime, Asian history

Listen to a sample

Terrific, engrossing ... a gruesome tale of a hitherto forgotten case, and of the sheer tenacity of a grieving father

The Bookseller

It is the storytelling flair that marks Midnight in Peking so highly above the run-of-the-mill true crime stories: with its false leads and twists, it sucks the reader in like the best fiction

The Scotsman

Fascinating and irresistible. I couldn't put it down

John Berendt, author of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil

The shocking true tale, combined with prose you can't drag yourself away from, makes Midnight in Peking a work of non fiction as compulsive as any bestselling crime novel. It also brings justice at last for a young woman whose murder nearly went unsolved

Sunday Express

Engrossing true crime whodunnit... A terrific read

Sunday Times

French has an easygoing prose style... well chosen quotes bring a new vigour and crispness... [He] succeeds in giving voice to a tragic quest for justice

Sunday Telegraph

Written in the style of a gripping murder mystery, but all the facts are true

BBC Radio 4 (Book of the Week)

Not only does Mr French succeed in solving the crime, he resurrects a period that was filled with glitter as well as evil

The Economist

An instant true crime classic. Grips from the first page to the last