When we Were Orphans by Kazuo Ishiguro was an interesting look into Shanghai in the 1930s. Christopher Banks, whose parents vanish when he is a child living in Shanghai, is taken to London where he becomes a detective of sorts. He later returns to Shanghai to solve the mystery/find his parents. At the time (1937) conflicts raged between the Japanese and Chinese with the European settlements caught in the middle. I found many parts in the book confusing, and I didn't sense an urgency for Christopher to solve this mystery, but this would make a good book club read and plenty of discussion topics surrounding Shanghai at that time.