book reviews , different studio guests each week. Join us every Thursday between 12 and 1pm on Radio Scilly 107.9fm or log on to

Missed any programmes? See below for list of guests, books and other details discussed.

Sunday, 29 July 2012


review live on show 26th July 2012 by Corinna christopher

This is a detective story with a difference. It is set in hot and dusty Delhi where we meet Mr. Vish Puri the senior man in charge of “Most Private Investigators Ltd “. 51 one year old Puri is a likeable slightly chubby man with a stable family life headed by his wife Rumpi and a problem with an addiction to fatty foods, frowned upon by his doctor.

He has a bevy of undercover operatives with the nicknames of Tubelight, Flush and Facecream. His method of detection goes back many years and involves sometimes a complete change of persona with the help of a useful tailor, skilled in disguises.

The main story concerns a public figure who is accused of murdering his maidservant . This girl seems to have disappeared and even her name is unknown to the family. Somehow the girl must be found and so begins a hunt which takes Puri to the desert oasis of Jaipur and the remote mines of Jharkhand. This all takes time and at the same time Puri is checking out prospective backgrounds for various marriage contracts, since this is his main business.

Along the way we are drawn into the complexities of modern India where the main media interest focuses on Crime, cricket and cinema, in that order ! Detection as in other countries is sometimes done with people’s garbage, where unlike America which has to root around in dark and seedy alleyways, in India. one could simply purchase an individual’s trash on the open market.

Eventually everything is solved in a most satisfactory way and the journey to the conclusion makes an enjoyable read. I liken it to the charming novels of Alexander McCall Smith set in Africa since it leaves the reader with a similar happy feeling. An easy read with an interesting background. I appreciated a glossary at the back of the book with a translation of the Indian terms.

The author is a writer and journalist who lives in Delhi and London. He has written several other books.

No comments: