He originally visited the United States in 1988 to write a book about T. South. Eliot, but following the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989 a newspaper reported on his previous fundraising efforts for Chinese students, and he was forced to remain in America to avoid persecution by the Communist Party of China. He has published nine crime-thriller/mystery novels set in Shanghai in the 1990s at the point when the People"s Republic of China is making momentous changes. All books feature Chief Inspector Chen Cao, a poetry-quoting cop with integrity, and his sidekick Detective Yu.
But the main concern in the books is modern China itself.
Each book features quotes from ancient and modern poets, Confucius, insights into Chinese cuisine, architecture, history, politics, herbology and philosophy as well as criminal procedure. He was a guest lecturer at a university in Missouri in 1989.
Voice of America made a news report about him. He had prepared spring rolls to raise money for Chinese students (and thereby embarrassed China"s Government, according to Aftenposten).