> Skip to content

Paul French resurrects the denizens of old Shanghai’s badlands, the drug-running, the gambling, and the graft, vividly restoring this long overlooked side of the city’s history.

Shanghai, 1941: In a city under siege unfolds an astonishing story of two men whose lives intertwine in crime and twisted friendship. Viennese Joe Farren rose to fame by cashing in on Shanghai’s desperate pleasure seeking. King of the chorus lines, his name was splashed in neon across the infamous Badlands nightclub, ‘Farren’s’. American fugitive Jack Riley, his fingertips acid-burnt, found a future in Shanghai as ‘The Slots King’. ‘Dapper Joe’ and ‘Lucky Jack’ collided, clashed and came together again in a frantic struggle to survive the city’s last days.

Paul French resurrects the denizens of old Shanghai’s badlands, the drug-running, the gambling, and the graft, vividly restoring this long overlooked side of the city’s history.

Formats & editions

  • Paperback

    9780670077281

    March 21, 2018

    Penguin

    RRP $20.00

    Online retailers

    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Amazon
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Dymocks
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • The Nile
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • Trade Paperback

    9780143790570

    May 14, 2018

    Viking

    RRP $32.99

    Online retailers

    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Amazon
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Dymocks
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • The Nile
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook

    9781760144203

    May 14, 2018

    Penguin eBooks

    Online retailers

    • iBooks
    • Amazon Kindle
    • Booktopia
    • eBooks
    • Google Play
    • Kobo
Q&A
Paul French Q&A

The prize-winning author on channelling his life-long fascination with Shanghai into his latest book, City of Devils.

Also by Paul French

Bloody Saturday: Shanghai’s Darkest Day: Penguin Specials
Betrayal in Paris: How the Treaty of Versailles Led to China's Long Revolution: Penguin Specials
The Badlands: Decadent Playground of Old Peking
Badlands: Penguin Special
Midnight In Peking

Recommendations

Green Is The New Black
A Scandal in Bohemia
Mindhunter
Voyager
The Tea Gardens
The Power Game
An Uncommon Woman
The Pearler's Wife
Catch-22: 50th Anniversary Edition
The Terror
Munich
Memoirs Of A Geisha
Atonement
Life After Life
The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock
The Juliet Code
Red Notice
Home Sweet Murder
The Making of Martin Sparrow
The Feather Thief