The Calcutta Police Force series set at the end of the British Raj continues apace with no diminution in quality of characterisation or plot. An ending that is both surprising and unpredictable.
This compulsive period crime novel, set in India, is colourful, exotic and gripping. The unexpected twists make it a real page-turner and will draw new fans to the genre.
This second novel in the series takes place in 1920, a year after Mukherjee’s cracking debut A Rising Man..He writes beautifully, bringing the colourful kingdom of Sambalpore to vivid life and taking the reader on a highly entertaining journey to unearth the dark secrets at its core, with unexpected twists on the way to a satisfying finale.
Reading this fast-paced police procedural is like a trip back in time to the British Raj, mid-1920... As a first-person narrator, Wyndham is perceptive and charming. At times he plays his clueless Englishman card, as in the sobriquet for his sergeant. He good-naturedly criticises their peon for not managing to master English, despite years of service, never turning that linguistic mirror on himself. The only issue he seems unable to get past is the idea of an Englishwoman involved with an Indian man. Meanwhile, he’s adopted some local customs quite whole-heartedly, including the rituals and pleasures of opium-smoking. Wyndham’s cultural blind spots are a clever narrative device for Mukherjee, who uses them to inform us about cultural, political, and religious matters that impinge on the investigation... Annie is just one of the distinctive and interesting characters Mukherjee has created, and you find yourself rooting for Wyndham’s success, despite his awkwardness in dealing with her.