This magnificent sequel to THE EIGHT BANNERS opens in Imperial China in 1870. The trading house of Barrington is now firmly established in Shanghai, its illustrious family honoured by the Ch'ing dynasty it supports. Young Robert Barrington, the son of the formidable Empress Dowages's favourite, James, is summoned into the Forbidden City in Peking-and thence to the Empress Dowager's bed.
Made a captain in China's new navy by his imperious patron, Barrington sees action in the devastating Battle of the Yalu River against the might of the Japenese. And as the fortunes of the Ch'ing ebb and flow in these tumultous times, so too do those of the Barringtons.
Adrian, Robert's brother, discovers pleasures more esoteric than working for the House, while their sister Helen experiences at first-hand the savage cruelty of the Boxers. And impetuous Victoria, the youngest, flies in the face of all her family's beliefs when she falls dangerously in love with a follower of Dr. Sun Yat-sen, the outlawed revolutionary intent on overthrowing the Ch'ing...
Alan Savage stunningly brings to life the final throes of the once mightly Dragon Empire, and the House of valiant Englishmen who upheld it.