My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I received this book as a digital ARC from the publisher in return for an honest review.
This is the story of Mark Rawlins and Alexandra Mostyn during the preceding years of the Chinese Civil War.
Major Mark Rawlins belongs to the Royal Engineers and he is a heroic escapee from the Russian Civil War. He is assigned to a new mission in order to determine the cause of a collapsed railroad bridge and, as consequence, tp rebuild it.
On the other hand, Alexandra, daughter of Garrard Mostyn head of a wealthy mercantile family living in Shanghai, fails in love with Mark in despite of her liberated behavior for that time.
The Bridge of a Hundred Years – which gives the tittle of this book – “is a place of bad fung shui where Yon lights will upset the spirits, and the village will suffer the consequences.”
According to the villagers, “they say that many years ago this plain was dirty as bones and no crops would grow here. The people were starving and under great sorrow due to the greed of their lord, who took everything within his own palace walls and left them nothing. One day a great warrior came from a land far away and made his camp on this plain, but she he asked for sustenance and water for his soldiers the villagers told him of the barrenness and advised him to camp in a better place.”
Following this legend, “the fang shui man advised that the bridge should not be built where the warrior was murdered, but the railway officials ignored him. Now the dragons are angered and the people are afraid until the beasts rest again.
It was an Englishman who built the bridge and angered the slumbering dragons. Now they have been reminded of how the warrior died, and will take vengeance from your countrymen.”
Naturally, Major Hawlins will ignore this old legend and he is obsessed in order to finish his mission no matter what.
However, the rise of Chiang Kai-shek’s Nationalist Army plays an important role as the historical background of the turbulent love affair between Mark and Alex.
KMT troops rounding up Communist prisoners.
About the author:
Drummond was born in a Military Hospital, as her father was a member of the British Army. She spent her early childhood in Hong Kong, where her father was stationed. She eventually married a senior British Civil Servant. She worked for a time as a WRAC (Womens Royal Army Corps). She also writes as Elizabeth Darrell, Eve Dane, Edna Dawes, and Eleanor Drew.
As Emma Drummond:
5* Beyond All Frontiers
4* A Question of Honour
4* A Distant Hero
TR The Burning Land
TR Forget the Glory
TR Scarlet Shadows
As Elizabeth Darrell:
4* The Bridge of a Hundred Dragons
TR At the Going Down of the Sun
TR The Gathering Wolves