Eight Skilled Gentlemen

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Eight Skilled Gentlemen is a novel by Barry Hughart, first published in 1990. It is part of a series set in a version of ancient China that began with Bridge of Birds.

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In this novel, Li Kao and Number Ten Ox are attending the execution of a notorious criminal (about whose capture the less said the better, according to the chronicler) when into the public square bounds an ancient vampire, who soon meets a fiery demise. Shortly afterward they discover a conspiracy involving fake tea, mysterious cages, and a host of minor demon-deities led by an ape-like man with blue cheeks, a crimson nose, a silver forehead, and a yellow chin. And then things really get strange. Template:Book-stub