A best-selling author of novels, short stories, magazine articles, translations, and plays, Oppenheim published over 150 books. Considered one of the originators of the thriller genre, his novels range from spy thrillers to romance, but all contain an undertone of intrigue. He also wrote under the name of Anthony Partridge. The story begins: The two ships, pursuer and pursued, quaintly shaped, with heavy, flapping sails, lay apparently becalmed in a sort of natural basis formed by the junction of two silently flowing, turgid rivers-rivers whose water was thick and oily, yellow in color, unpleasant to look at. The country through which they passed was swamp-riven and desolate, though in the far distance were rice fields and the curiously fashioned roofs of a Chinese village.