Jonathan Mirsky

Case Closed?

A Death in Peking: Who Really Killed Pamela Werner?

By

Earnshaw Books 376pp £19.99 order from our bookshop

In January 1937, the mutilated – no, butchered – body of Pamela Werner, a pretty, somewhat naive girl from Britain, was found in Peking, not far from the ice rink where she had been skating and the home she shared with her adoptive father. He, E T C Werner, a British expat, spent much of his life accusing at least three foreign men resident in Peking – two Americans (a dentist and a retired marine) and an Italian doctor – of raping and murdering her. It was a shattering scandal in China, where British and Chinese police investigated the circumstances of her death and the local papers made a meal of the horror. The murder has been reinvestigated several times over the years, and not long ago a widely read book, Midnight in Peking (which I reviewed in these pages in 2012), concluded that one of Werner’s suspects was indeed the murderer.

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • 'Peters was unashamed and evidently unshamable, an impostor who wholly inhabited his fabrications and who indignant… ,
    • ‘At every waking moment Barbara Hepworth was aware of herself as a woman paving the way in a man’s world’ From the… ,
    • The entertaining Howard Jacobson is in conversation with Prof John Mullan at the Queen’s Park Book Festival on Sund… ,
    • 'A modest and retiring man, Thompson spent his life describing apple varieties and recommending the best – Ribston… ,
    • 'Macfarlane is a poet with the instincts of a thriller writer, an autodidact in botany, mycology, geology and palae… ,
    • 'Some scholars attribute Shakespeare’s pre-eminence to four centuries of propaganda and not to the fact that Hamlet… ,
    • RT : We would appreciate any retweets ,