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Janet MaslinAs investigative journalists go, Mr. August sounds more fun-loving than dogged. He proudly describes having roller skated his way through the Great Hall of the People in Beijing and being thrilled to have a security officer complain about him. ("This is too unserious.") And he undertook the search for Mr. Lai in a similar spirit of mischief…Inside the Red Mansion winds up a colorfully digressive book capitalizing on the thought that understanding the new China is essential to understanding a criminal who could so successfully exploit it.
—The New York Times