On a freezing night in February, a woman wades into the waters of Morecambe Bay in a drunken bid to commit suicide. Braced for death, she finds herself instead saving a man’s life: a young Chinese cockle picker, one of the only survivors of a tragic mass drowning. For Wen – now missing, presumed dead – Angie provides an unexpected sanctuary. They share neither language nor experience, but she agrees to let him stay with her and ‘disappear’. Soon their unlikely pairing blossoms into something darkly passionate.
But Wen’s past soon catches up with him, for he is still in debt to the snakeheads who brought him out of China. Crimson China is a novel that traps the reader at the outset, shining a light on a dangerous hidden world that runs in parallel to our own.