The Case of the Deadly Butter Chicken: A Vish Puri Mystery (Vish Puri Mysteries)
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Now featuring mouthwatering recipes from the Vish Puri family kitchen, this installment in Tarquin Hall’s mystery series offers a taste of India alongside the thrill of a rich and fulfilling whodunit mystery.
Dubbed “a wonderfully engaging P.I.” (The Times, London), Tarquin Hall’s irresistible protagonist Vish Puri has become an international favorite through a series that “splendidly evokes the color and bustle of Delhi and the tang of contemporary India” (Seattle Times). Now the gormandizing, spectacularly mustachioed sleuth finds himself facing down his greatest fears in an explosive case involving the Indian and Pakistani mafias.
When the elderly father of a top Pakistani cricketer playing in a new multimillion-dollar cricket league dies frothing at the mouth during a post-match dinner, it’s not a simple case of Delhi Belly. His butter chicken has been poisoned. To solve the case, Puri must penetrate the region’s organized crime, following a trail that leads deep into Pakistan—the country in which many members of the P.I.’s family were massacred during the 1947 partition of India. The last piece of the puzzle, however, turns up closer to home when Puri learns of the one person who can identify the killer. Unfortunately it is the one person in the world with whom he has sworn never to work: his Mummy-ji.
With riotously entertaining prose, a boisterous cast of characters, and a pitch-perfect sense of place, Tarquin Hall has crafted a gripping whodunit that takes us deep into Indian history and society. He brings a hugely appealing culture to life with all its sights, sounds, smells, foods, and complexity. As the title implies, The Case of the Deadly Butter Chicken is a succulent read by a writer at the top of his game.
probably he’s in league with the bookies, who are providing so much of black money during elections. So he will not want any Indian bookie unmasked, that is for sure, and he will make sure that charlie Johri Mal does not do any singing for his supper.’ The two men drank in silence for a minute. ‘You said you were working for another organisation, sir?’ asked Puri. ‘It’s relatively new, Vish, so you wouldn’t have heard of it. We don’t even have an office yet. But we’re calling our campaign
ceiling again as if, somehow, the moulded plaster might hold the answer. ‘To tell you the truth, Mr Puri, I can’t remember.’ ‘Anyone else approached the table – aside from the waiters, that is?’ ‘Not while we were eating, no.’ ‘It is my understanding you spilt your drink, sir?’ ‘That’s right. I knocked it over.’ ‘When exactly?’ ‘Oh that’s hard to say.’ ‘When Faheem Khan was absent?’ ‘Yes, I suppose it was.’ ‘Must have distracted everyone.’ ‘I suppose so. Some of it spilled on Gunjan
of his desk, looking pleased with himself. ‘What puzzles me is what Rinku bhai is doing helping you,’ he continued. ‘We’ve had plenty of dealings together, he and I. Why this sudden betrayal?’ ‘We’re childhood friends,’ answered Puri. ‘When I demanded his help, he couldn’t refuse me.’ ‘Very touching. Childhood friends. Makes it all the more appropriate. You two grew up together. Now you’ll die together.’ He let his words hang in the air for a moment before adding, ‘Maybe they’ll have a joint
There was no time to search for his ten lakh deposit. Puri made his way out through the back of the building in search of the others. He ran into them halfway across the garden. Facecream had their former captor in a half nelson. ‘Full Moon’s dead, poisoned by the paan wallah,’ Puri told them. ‘What about the money? There’s got to be fifty, sixty lakhs in there,’ said Rinku. An explosion came from inside the mansion. Glass and flames burst from the ground-floor windows. Rinku stared,
Generals for the best part of its existence. He also took comfort from the fact that Pakistan (or at least the few miles of it he’d seen so far) looked down at heel compared to India. There were few new cars on the roads. On the outskirts of Lahore little construction was under way. And most of the petrol stations were closed, the government having imposed fuel rationing. Perhaps that explained why there was so little traffic. Or did the locals know something he didn’t? Had an ambush been laid