This is an historical mystery series set in the ancient Mongolian Empire during the Thirteenth Century. The protagonist is Marco Polo, the European explorer/trader who has journeyed the Silk Road into the Mongolian realm. These tales center around Marco Polo’s job as a detective working for the Great Khan, in which he is sent in as an impartial outsider to report on and solve contentious murder cases in various lands under the control of the Mongols. His great observational skills and detailed reports to the Khan are why these cases are assigned to him.
These mysteries happen in many diverse locales all across Asia. Marco Polo is not free to choose the cases he is assigned. He is often sent into very contentious areas and must negotiate with competing tribes, families, or interests. He is often viewed as a suspicious outsider, a spy, or otherwise unwelcome participant in these very personal matters. However, he operates under the seal of the Khan and all must obey. In most cases he is operating “in the dark” with minimal foreknowledge of the case at hand or the broader community, largely ignorant of its language, history, or customs. His observational skills and personal genius are his saving graces.