Saturday, July 21, 2012

A Review of The Case of the Missing Servant by Tarquin Hall

In The Case of the Missing Servant by Tarquin Hall we meet India's most private investigator. Is he the Sherlock Holmes of Delhi? Or perhaps India's Hercule Poirot? As I read this delightful discovery I could see Vish Puri, aka Chubby as a combination. Portly with a certain style in the clothes he wears I certainly am reminded of Poirot but being more hands on I can see Sherlock Holmes. One passage early on in the story reminded me of another detective.

" 'Vish Puri's third rule of detective work is to always make all suspects believe you are a fool', explained the detective. 'That way they are caught unawares.' " pg 80.

I was at once reminded of Columbo.

Most Private Investigators, Ltd. is brought into a case involving a missing servant girl from the Kasliwal household. A body of a woman badly damaged to the point of unrecognizablility is found. The master of the household is arrested as rumors have been about that he had gotten her pregnant and disposed of her. As Puri investigates clues lead to other possible suspects. The one suspect that seems to know the most turns up dead himself. A clue is found that makes Puri suspecious of the settled question that the woman's found body is really that of the missing servant.

Jumping ahead past the trial Vish Puri assembles all the main characters at the Kasliwal house for the final reveal, much as Hercule Poirot would do at the end of his cases. We learn the actual murderer, the motives for the murders, or the seeming murders, and the revelation that yes, the servant was indeed pregnant.

It is quite likely that I would never have run into Vish Puri if it were not for Goodreads. I most definately will be making room for others of this series to go next to my Poirots, Maigrets, and Holmes. It was a most pleasant surprise. A mystery with humor and delightful cast of operatives at the Most Private Investigators, Ltd., Tubelight, Flush, and Facecream. As a bonus, if you get hung up on a term or expression whether it be Hindi, Urdu, or Punjabi, Hall provides us with a glossery at the back of the book. If you love cozy mysteries you have to try Vish Puri, India's Most Private Investigator where "Confidentiality Is Our Watchword".

DISCLAIMER: I have received a complimentary copy of this book through Goodreads FirstRead giveaway program.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

An Indian Columbo. Cool! Columbo was my favorite show of all time. That's quite a compliment.