Authors: Sax Rohmer
“Without Fu-Manchu we wouldn’t have Dr. No, Doctor Doom or Dr. Evil. Sax Rohmer created the first truly great evil mastermind. Devious, inventive, complex, and fascinating. These novels inspired a century of great thrillers!”
New York Times
bestselling author of
“The true king of the pulp mystery is Sax Rohmer—and the shining ruby in his crown is without a doubt his Fu-Manchu stories.”
New York Times
bestselling author of
The Devil Colony
“Fu-Manchu remains the definitive diabolical mastermind of the 20th Century. Though the arch-villain is ‘the Yellow Peril incarnate,’ Rohmer shows an interest in other cultures and allows his protagonist a complex set of motivations and a code of honor which often make him seem a better man than his Western antagonists. At their best, these books are very superior pulp fiction… at their worst, they’re still gruesomely readable.”
—Kim Newman, award-winning author of
“Sax Rohmer is one of the great thriller writers of all time! Rohmer created in Fu-Manchu the model for the super-villains of James Bond, and his hero Nayland Smith and Dr. Petrie are worthy stand-ins for Holmes and Watson… though Fu-Manchu makes Professor Moriarty seem an under-achiever.”
—Max Allan Collins,
New York Times
bestselling author of
The Road to Perdition
“I grew up reading Sax Rohmer’s Fu-Manchu novels, in cheap paperback editions with appropriately lurid covers. They completely entranced me with their vision of a world constantly simmering with intrigue and wildly overheated ambitions. Even without all the exotic detail supplied by Rohmer’s imagination, I knew full well that world wasn’t the same as the one I lived in… For that alone, I’m grateful for all the hours I spent chasing around with Nayland Smith and his stalwart associates, though really my heart was always on their intimidating opponent’s side.”
—K. W. Jeter, acclaimed author of
“A sterling example of the classic adventure story, full of excitement and intrigue. Fu-Manchu is up there with Sherlock Holmes, Tarzan, and Zorro—or more precisely with Professor Moriarty, Captain Nemo, Darth Vader, and Lex Luthor—in the imaginations of generations of readers and moviegoers.”
—Charles Ardai, award-winning novelist and founder of Hard Case Crime
“I love Fu-Manchu, the way you can only love the really GREAT villains. Though I read these books years ago he is still with me, living somewhere deep down in my guts, between Professor Moriarty and Dracula, plotting some wonderfully hideous revenge against an unsuspecting mankind.”
—Mike Mignola, creator of
“Fu-Manchu is one of the great villains in pop culture history, insidious and brilliant. Discover him if you dare!”
New York Times
bestselling co-author of
The Plague Ships
Available now from Titan Books:
THE MYSTERY OF DR. FU-MANCHU
THE RETURN OF DR. FU-MANCHU
THE HAND OF FU-MANCHU
THE DAUGHTER OF FU-MANCHU
THE MASK OF FU-MANCHU
THE BRIDE OF FU-MANCHU
THE TRAIL OF FU-MANCHU
PRESIDENT OF FU-MANCHU
THE DRUMS OF FU-MANCHU
THE ISLAND OF FU-MANCHU
THE SHADOW OF FU-MANCHU
THE WRATH OF FU-MANCHU
Print edition ISBN: 9780857686169
E-book edition ISBN: 9780857686824
Published by Titan Books
A division of Titan Publishing Group Ltd
144 Southwark Street, London SE1 0UP
First published as a novel in the UK by Tom Stacey, 1973
First published as a novel in the US by DAW, 1976
First Titan Books edition: March 2016
10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental. The publisher does not have any control over and does not assume any responsibility for author or third-party websites or their content.
The Authors League of America and the Society of Authors assert the moral right to be identified as the author of this work.
Copyright © 2015 The Authors League of America and the Society of Authors
Visit our website:
Did you enjoy this book? We love to hear from our readers. Please email us at
or write to us at Reader Feedback at the above address.
To receive advance information, news, competitions, and exclusive offers online, please sign up for the Titan newsletter on our website:
Frontispiece illustration from Liberty magazine, Nov. 16, 1940, art by Arnold Freberg. Special Thanks to Dr. Lawrence Knapp for the illustration as it appeared on “The Page of Fu Manchu,”
No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the publisher, nor be otherwise circulated in any form of binding or cover other than that in which it is published and without a similar condition being imposed on the subsequent purchaser.
A CIP catalogue record for this title is available from the British Library.
From the cover of
magazine, November 16, 1940, art by Arnold Freberg.
“By your leave, sir!”
Thurston stepped quickly to the side of the carpeted alleyway, as a steward pushing a trolley stocked with baggage went past. His traveller’s eye noted Dutch Airlines labels on some of the pieces. But he was more interested in a man who followed the trolley.
He was of thickset, shortish figure and wore a chauffeur’s uniform. His yellow, pock-pitted face and sunken eyes were vaguely menacing and his walk more nearly resembled a lope, catlike and agile.
“What a dangerous looking brute,” was the thought which crossed Thurston’s mind. He asked himself by which of the passengers now joining the
at Cherbourg this forbidding servant could be employed.
He hadn’t long to wait for an answer.
A Chinese cook (or Thurston thought he was Chinese) hurried along just ahead of him in the direction of the square before the purser’s office. He carried something on a tray, wrapped in a white napkin. There was no one else in the alleyway until a woman turned into it and began to saunter in Thurston’s direction.
The cook, seeing her, behaved in so incredible a manner that Thurston felt tempted to close his eyes, count ten and then look again. He set the tray down, dropped to his knees and touched the carpet with his forehead!
The woman showed no surprise, never even glanced at the crouching white figure, but continued calmly on her way. As she passed by, the man gathered up his tray, and without once looking back, hurried on. The mysterious passenger had now drawn near enough for Thurston to get a clear impression. She carried a small handbag to which was tied another of the KLM tags.
It was alligator leather, similar to several piled on the trolley.
Thurston tried not to stare, tried to pretend that he hadn’t noticed the singular behaviour of the Chinese cook. But this chivalrous effort was wasted.
Apparently, the woman remained unaware of his presence as she had been unaware of the prostrate Chinese. Her gait was leisurely, almost languid. She wore a cream shantung suit which displayed her graceful figure to perfection. A green scarf wound turban fashion (perhaps because of the high wind in the harbour) lent her features some of the quality of a delicate ivory mask. Except for superciliously curved lips, her face could not be said to bear any expression whatever.
She was beautiful, but unapproachable.
Like a vision she appeared, and was gone. He was left with a picture of half-closed, jade-green eyes, of slender white hands, hands nurtured in indolence.
Thurston was too experienced a voyager to bother his friend, Burns, the purser, until the
had cleared Cherbourg. But he meant to find out all that Burns knew about this imperious beauty attended by an Oriental manservant and whom a Chinese member of the crew treated as a goddess.
Having time on his hands, for he travelled light and had already unpacked, he roamed the ship, drawing room, smoking room, lounges, decks, but never had a glimpse of the jade-eyed woman of mystery.
When he took his seat at the purser’s table for dinner, Thurston read a signal from Burns and lingered until the others had gone;
“Come along to my room,” the purser invited. “Haven’t had a moment to spare until now.”
When they were in Burns’ room, the door closed and drinks set out, Burns unburdened himself.
“Glad to have someone like you to talk to. I mean someone not officially concerned. We often have difficult passengers, but this time we’ve got a woman who is a number one headache. Good looker, too. Jenkins, the chief steward, is raising hell. She won’t have a steward or stewardess in her room. She’s got a yellow faced manservant on board, and he’s to take care of everything. Bit irregular?”