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The Chinaman (Mike Cramer #1)

4.01  ·  Rating Details ·  522 Ratings  ·  29 Reviews
The Chinaman understood death.

Jungle-skilled, silent and lethal, he had killed for the Viet Cong and then for the Americans. He had watched helpless when his two eldest daughters had been raped and killed by Thai pirates.
Now all that was behind him. Quiet, hard-working and unassuming, he was building up his South London take-away business.
Until the day his wife and younges
Hardcover, 310 pages
Published January 1st 1992 by Pocket Books
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Trev Twinem
I read this book on first publication in the early 90’s and I enjoyed but I must admit on this second reading it felt somewhat dated if not dull and formulaic.
It certainly has an explosive (literally) start with the brutal death of the wife and daughter of a quietly spoken man called Nguyen Ngoc Minh. We quickly learn that this seemingly mild-mannered owner of a Chinese restaurant is in fact a trained and lethal killer from a long forgotten war in the killing fields of Vietnam. He wants revenge
Tom Tischler
Dec 15, 2012 Tom Tischler rated it it was amazing
In Vietnam Nguyen Ngoc Minh was a Vietnemase killer but he
switched sides and went with the US and he became a ruthless
hunter of his former comrades. At the end of the war the North
was overtaking the South and Nguyen had to get out with his
family. He made it to the American Embassy with passes to go
but the last copter was leaving and they could not get there in
time.He spent three years in a prison camp before he
escsped andfound his family. They made arrangements to get out
but one of his daughte
May 27, 2012 Ben rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

I was loaned this by a friend and I'll be honest, if I'd seen the book in a shop I'd have taken a quick look and moved on as at first glance it's nothing special.
It's actually quite an enjoyable if somewhat violent story but well written for what it is.

The Chinamen (actually Vietnamese) is not someone you would want to annoy!
They say it's the quiet ones you need to watch out for and boy are they right!
Feb 23, 2014 Neil rated it really liked it
Shelves: thriller
A very good read. Pact plot and some edge of the seat action. Well written with a reasonably intricate plot that does not answer all of the questions that you may have but not all questions need to be answered. Recommended for any thriller fans.
Ian T
Oct 15, 2012 Ian T rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lent to me again by my neighbour. A great book if now after 230 years a bit politically dated. I don't think the IRA or the government would like this now although at the time of release would have been really current.
Apr 02, 2011 Mary rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting mix of Viet and IRA guerilla/terrorist methods and the influence of Libya on the IRA. Learned some things about bomb making. Good story.
Tim Mode
Entertaining but not profound. Interesting pov on the fallout from the US war on Viet Nam in the 1960's.
I loved it... blood, guts and vengence.... fantastic!
Sep 06, 2009 sani rated it liked it
This is better than Rambo :)
Oct 26, 2012 Emma rated it liked it
Wanted to give it more stars, but...
I enjoyed the book, it flows easily and is well written. My issue? The ending. It all ends rather quickly and the main character becomes an after thought.
Colin Murtagh
Jan 17, 2016 Colin Murtagh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller, crime, fiction
I've been really enjoying Stephen Leathers books, both the Spider Shepherds and the Jack Nightingales, so when this popped up as a cheap kindle book I had to give it a shot.
The book starts with the IRA bombing campaign in London, which rather dates it a bit. Amongst the casualties are a Chinese mother and daughter. The husband, Nguyen Ngoc Minh, a Chinese restaurant owner wants justice, and starting with the police, approaches various organisations looking for someone who will bring the bombers
Nov 21, 2011 Bob rated it liked it
Shelves: 2011
Very *** 1/2 good read for fans of action thrillers. For some reason, Leather's popularity hasn't spread to this side of the pond from England and it's hard to see why. Fortunately, most are now available for Kindle.

The plot is pretty well described here already. His action scenes are excellent, but the book is slow to start, largely because he fills out a host of characters perhaps a bit too fully, although most figure in well at the end. I also disliked the formatting, which has no chapters a
Mar 07, 2014 Dan rated it really liked it
Contains spoilers
This book was excellently narrated (although it could be a bit too fast for non mother tongue listeners) by Russell Boulter who, as well as a good narration, was able to offer great emotions and anger in the characters throughout the story. The plot seemed quite bizarre but I have to give Stephen credit for his thorough research: this reads like a guide to bombmaking and tracking!

I was disappointed that Wood's character was killed off (although necessary to make the story even m
Saint No Stopping Us

Four out of ten.

An ex-Viet Cong veteran, was living the quiet life in South London until the day his wife and youngest daughter were destroyed by an IRA bomb in a Knightsbridge department store.

Then, simply but persistently, he began to ask the authorities who were the men responsible, what was being done. And was turned away, fobbed off, treated as a nuisance.

Which was when the Chinaman, denied justice, decided on revenge. And went back to war.

E. Bamford
May 11, 2016 E. Bamford rated it really liked it
I read this book many years ago and came across it again recently. It left a great expression on me so bought it again. It was still as good as I remembered. It is about a Chinaman who lost his wife and daughter in an IRA bombing in London. Unable to find anyone to help him he sets out to punish the perpetrators of this horrible crime.
Frank Emerson
Dec 29, 2015 Frank Emerson rated it it was amazing
This was the first book I read by the author, and it made me want to read everything he has written. It is definitely in my top three favourite books ever, and I have read a lot of books. Not only did I love it, it is the most loaned out book I have bought.
But a review. Looks like Charlie Chan,fights like Jackie Chan seeks out and gets revenge for murdered family. Enough said,read it !
Rick Brick
Jun 22, 2015 Rick Brick rated it really liked it
I have never read anything by this author but if this novel is any indication, I will try and find other books he has written.

A story about a rogue IRA unit being tracked by the SAS, the police, the IRA and a lone Vietnamese who had his family killed in a bombing.
Apr 20, 2013 Pat rated it did not like it
Recommended to Pat by: Weston liked the author
Shelves: mystery
IRA terrorists in the 1990's bomb London and kill the wife and daughter of a Vietnamese immigrant. He sets out for revenge. In contrast to the author's many fans, I thought the plot was predictable and boring. Just not my cup of tea.
Sep 24, 2016 Martin rated it really liked it
Gripping story!
Jul 07, 2012 James rated it liked it
An entertaining read.
Some of the characters are not credible, but Stephen's dilemma must be that we wouldn't read his books if the characters were dull.
Suresh Vijendran
Jun 03, 2013 Suresh Vijendran rated it really liked it
A fast paced book. I had read it some 10 years back, and again found this book, and enjoyed it again.
Michael Smith
Dec 05, 2012 Michael Smith rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Review to follow...
Kirsty Maule
Jan 06, 2016 Kirsty Maule rated it it was amazing
Early book by Stephen leather which means it was one of his better ones.

Can't wait for the film.
Marize De Klerk
Oct 03, 2012 Marize De Klerk rated it really liked it
Shelves: favourite, fiction
one of my Favourite Stephen Leather books! The first one I've read of Stephen Leather but worth the while
Jon Wilkin
Sep 17, 2014 Jon Wilkin rated it really liked it
I've read this book a couple of times and enjoyed it each time.
Nov 27, 2015 David rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
It took 380 pages of 410 to introduce the main character of a new series but enjoyable and fast moving. Different to my normal police procedural type but a good adventure.
Helge L.
Sep 14, 2014 Helge L. rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned
Good thriller. Pits an ex-VietCong, ex-Us Forces boat refugee from Vietnam against the IRA.
Jim Moffett
Aug 29, 2013 Jim Moffett rated it it was amazing
S.R. Lobban
S.R. Lobban rated it it was ok
Jun 23, 2011
Butch Vuycankiat
Butch Vuycankiat rated it really liked it
Jan 07, 2013
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Stephen Leather was a journalist for more than ten years on newspapers such as The Times, the Daily Mail and the South China Morning Post in Hong Kong. His bestsellers have been translated into more than ten languages. He has also written for television shows such as London's Burning, The Knock and the BBC's Murder in Mind series. For much of 2011 his self-published eBooks - including The Bestsell ...more
More about Stephen Leather...

Other Books in the Series

Mike Cramer (3 books)
  • The Long Shot (Mike Cramer #2)
  • The Double Tap (Mike Cramer #3)

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