I received a galley of this novel for review through https://www.netgalley.com. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Situations. The story is set in the Kowloon Walled City which was part of Hong Kong. The primary characters are 17 year old Mei Yee, 18 Year old Dai Shing and young Jin Ling.
Mei Yee was sold by her father and has been forced to be a prostitute within the Walled city for about two years. Jin Ling is Mei Yee’s younger sister who ran away from home and has been living masquerading as a boy within the Walled City. She has been living on the streets and searching for her sister. Dai Shing got mixed up with mobsters operating out of the Walled City. He has been accused of murder and has been in hiding. Now he is trying to obtain evidence on the head of the mob to clear his name.
Dai happens across Jin and recruits ‘him’. Dai also finds a window into the mobter’s headquarters and there meets Mei. The trio do not realize they are closely connected until late in the story. Jin and Dai have to dodge other violent residents as they try to survive. Mei must make a commitment to help with the hope of rescue or give in to your life as a prostitute. They all eek out survival in a dark world of dirty alleys, violence and crime.
This was an interesting 6+ hour read of 424 pages. This is a Young Adult Thriller dealing with survival and trust. While there were several exciting passages in the novel, it was not an edge-of-your-seat read. I thought how the point of view rotated between the three principal characters was an interesting twist. The cover art seems appropriate. I give this novel a 4 out of 5.
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