In this suspenseful tale of seduction and deception, a wealthy banker is smitten by an alluring young woman while traveling aboard the express train from Beijing to Shanghai. A consummate storyteller and one of the most popular novelists of his day, Zhang Henshui sweeps us on board with them and takes us through train stations and back and forth between first, second, and third class cars, evoking the smells of this microcosm of the urban world. We see what various travelers wear; we hear their conversations; we feel the chill or the warmth of each car; we detect a trace of perfume in one, pickled vegetables and greasy meats in another. Here is popular Chinese fiction at its best. Shanghai Express was considered'entertainment'fiction and was enormously popular in the 1930s. William Lyell's sparkling translation at last allows an English-reading audience to share in the fun.