The Sand Pebbles by the late Richard McKenna, a U.S. Navy sailor turned novelist and posthumous recipient of the Nebula Award for science fiction, is his vintage historical war drama novel, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher RosettaBooks.
This was originally published in 1962 by Harper & Row , after being serialized in The Saturday Evening Post and won the 1963 Harper Prize before being adapted into the eponymous 1966 film starring Steve McQueen.
The story takes place against the backdrop of the ongoing fighting between the Nationalists and the warlords in China during the 1920s. In it, the crew of a foreign gunboat ordered to patrol the region and protect U.S. citizens gets caught up in the conflict, as the novel explores the changing ideas of Chinese nationalism and western imperialism and tradition and modernity through the interactions between an American engine mechanic and his shipmates, as well as the Chinese workers aboard the gunship, and the officials on all sides around them.
Offered worldwide, available at Amazon.