A Dance with Danger

A Dance with Danger
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A Promise Sworn on the Edge of a Sword…After a failed assassination attempt on a corrupt general, Bao Yang is a wanted man. Taking refuge with an ally, Yang accidentally compromises the man’s daughter when they’re discovered alone. To save her honour he must marry the beautiful Jin-mei immediately!In Yang’s arms, Jin-mei feels alive for the first time.She’s determined not to lose him, even if it means joining his perilous mission… But when she realises just how destructive Yang’s path might be can she convince him that their life together could be so much sweeter than revenge?


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‘This isn’t what you wanted, is it?’ Jin-mei asked Yang beneath her breath.

‘There is no one else I would rather be wedded to,’ he replied without hesitation.

Jin-mei whipped around to face him, causing the pearls in her ears to swing dramatically. ‘You’re trying to be clever with your words. You could very well mean that you have no desire to be married at all—to anyone.’

It was hard not to smile. ‘I think you and I will suit each other quite well, Jin-mei.’

Jin-mei. The sound of her name slid smoothly over his tongue, as if he’d been calling her that for years. Such a pretty name … like the clear chime of bells.

‘It’s a compliment,’ he added, seeing her perplexed expression.

It was the best arrangement Yang had ever made. He had the magistrate’s protection, his silence, and his daughter … Surely it couldn’t be this easy?

When I first imagined the world of The Sword Dancer I envisaged a wild land filled with heroes and bandits, with the lines between them completely blurred.

For those who have read The Sword Dancer, I hope you enjoy seeing what happens to Li Feng and Thief-catcher Han. As in all great romances, the rooftop marriage proposal was a beginning rather than an end, and their adventure continues here.

For history buffs: the places and people in this book are part real and part imagined. Fujian province was the seat of several rebellions. Rogue warlords were a plague upon imperial power in the late part of the dynasty. And when you read about the rebel figures that emerged throughout Chinese history many of them made their wealth through the salt trade.

The Linyin Stone Forest is an actual place. The pictures of it are dramatic and awe-inspiring. According to travel sites, it wasn’t explored until centuries later, during the Qing Dynasty, due to the dense growth that obscured it from view.

Perhaps I’ll be able to visit one day, and imagine the colourful bandits who made those hidden caverns their hideout.

Jeannie Lin can be found online via Twitter, Facebook or her website

To be notified when her next book comes out sign up at www.jeannielin.com

A Dance

with Danger

Jeannie Lin


USA TODAY bestselling author JEANNIE LIN started writing her first book while working as a high school science teacher in South Central Los Angeles. Her stories are inspired by a mix of historical research and wuxia adventure tales. Jeannie’s groundbreaking historical romances set in Tang Dynasty China have received multiple awards, including the Golden Heart for her debut novel Butterfly Swords.

Thank you to my husband, for putting up with the papers that litter our living room and the all-nighters I had to pull to finish this book.

I blame the twins for the mess, but hubby knows it’s all me.

Chapter One

Tang Dynasty China—AD 848

‘The mountains are high and the Emperor is far away.’

Bao Yang had always been fond of that particular proverb. It certainly held true in Fujian province where rugged mountains enclosed them to the north, west and south. To the east was the ocean fed by a lattice of streams and rivers. This was a land set apart from the heart of the empire, away from the eyes and ears of imperial authority. This was a land where a person with determination and a little cleverness could carve his own destiny, regardless of his birth.

Even a man with a price on his head.

Yang should have been afraid to return to the city where not long ago he’d tried to have a powerful warlord assassinated, but he had connections. He knew who would turn a blind eye and who could be bribed.

It wasn’t that there was no law in Fujian. Imperially appointed bureaucrats still oversaw the administration of the cities, but it was the merchants who dominated the rivers and ports. The surrounding mountains were inhabited by bandits and smugglers. Wealth and commerce were the forces that truly ruled this province.

He was approaching the city of Minzhou now by river, where there was very likely a warrant out for his arrest for attempted murder. Or at least for someone who looked like him. To his knowledge, his name was still unknown—for now, although he didn’t know for how much longer. His connections had bought him some valuable time.

The fisherman at the crossing was willing to take him down the river for a few copper coins. Yang hid beneath the wide brim of his hat as the tiny boat drifted into the city, joining the fleet of merchant vessels and ferries that fed the bustling markets.

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