Reading: The Willow Pattern

June 20, 2008

The genres I like best for leisure reading are historical fiction and mysteries. So naturally I’m especially fond of historical mysteries. My all-time favorite series is the Brother Cadfael books by Ellis Peters, set in medieval England (another of my interests). And I’d be reading more of Robert Van Gulik’s Judge Dee novels, if our local library had any.

The first of Van Gulik’s books I read was The Celebrated Cases of Judge Dee, his translation of a Chinese detective novel, Dee Goong An. I was fascinated to find out that Judge Dee was a real person from history, a district magistrate from the time of the Tang dynasty. The fact that the story was a genuine Chinese detective story, translated to English, rather than a Western detective story set in ancient China, made it all the more interesting to me.

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