I get very excited every time a new Vish Puri mystery comes out. To me, a mystery does not get better than this. Vish Puri is an amusing character who is set to task with the Delhi’s most probing mysteries. Encounters with his family, friends and operatives add a delicious spice to the already full bodied curries that are his mysteries. That being said, it should be kept in mind that these are not hard core mysteries, but rather tales that are humorous, character driven and give a good sense of place.
In The Case of the Love Commandos, author Tarquin Hall takes Puri a little further a field than Delhi. This time the mystery unravels in Agra, in the shadow of the Taj Mahal and Lucknow. In spite of the fact that I have a soft spot in my heart for Delhi, the change of location does not diminish the tale in the least. As in all the Vish Puri mysteries, Hall has precisely transcribed the food and language of place onto the page, making you feel as though you are there. In particular, Tarquin’s use of Indian English is priceless. He gets the diction and tone dead on for a man of Puri’s age and status.
Who would like this book? I read a lot of book related blogs and one thing that surprises me is that I have not seen more reviews for Love Commandos. It is a great story that would appeal to a wide range of people. It’s got humor, food and love. Certainly, for anyone remotely interested in India, Hall gives descriptions of Delhi and life there that are true to life. The sense of place communicated in these mysteries is akin to what Martin Walker does with his Bruno series (review) and Donna Leon does with her Inspector Brunetti series. And as an aside, check out Vish Puri’s website. It will give you a sense of what the series is all about.
I would like to thank RandomHouse Canada for giving me a copy of this book, but that in no way affected my review.
I haven’t seen this one around either. Maybe the title is making people think it’s different than it is. I love books set in India so it sounds good to me.
The first book in the series is The Case of the Missing Servant, though any of them can be read as a stand alone. I can’t remember how i discovered Vish Puri, but when I did i remember wondering why I hadn’t heard about him sooner. Definitely worth the read.
I’ve never heard of this author or series before. Mysteries are a hit or miss for me, but I have found that I do enjoy them more than I thought. This one might be worth checking out.
Technically, it is a mystery, but I’d say mystery-lite. It isn’t dark and gloomy or scary, and it is really funny.
So glad to hear that you LOVED the book 🙂
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