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The Case of the Missing Servant | [Tarquin Hall]

The Case of the Missing Servant

In hot and dusty Delhi, Puri's main work comes from screening prospective marriage partners, a job once the preserve of aunties and family priests. But when an honest public litigator is accused of murdering his maidservant, it takes all of Puri's resources to investigate. How will he trace the fate of the girl, known only as Mary, in a population of more than one billion? Who is taking pot shots at him and his prize chilli plants?
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Publisher's Summary

Meet Vish Puri, India's most private investigator. Portly, persistent and unmistakably Punjabi, he cuts a determined swathe through modern India's swindlers, cheats and murderers.

In hot and dusty Delhi, Puri's main work comes from screening prospective marriage partners, a job once the preserve of aunties and family priests. But when an honest public litigator is accused of murdering his maidservant, it takes all of Puri's resources to investigate. How will he trace the fate of the girl, known only as Mary, in a population of more than one billion? Who is taking pot shots at him and his prize chilli plants? And why is his widowed "Mummy-ji" attempting to play sleuth when everyone knows Mummies are not detectives? With his team of undercover operatives--Tubelight, Flush, and Facecream--Puri ingeniously combines modern techniques with principles of detection established in India more than 2000 years ago - long before "that Johnny-come-lately" Sherlock Holmes donned his Deerstalker.

From his well-heeled Gymkhana Club to the slums where the servant classes live, Puri's adventures reveal modern India in all its seething complexity.

©2009 Sacred Cow Media Ltd.; (P)2009 BBC Audio

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  •  
    john CHARLOTTE, NC, United States 12-06-12
    john CHARLOTTE, NC, United States 12-06-12 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Indie Sleuth Triumphs"

    Fun and absorbing read. This series will be a joy to those who wish a good glimpse of modern India as well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ReluctantReader New York, United States 12-05-12
    ReluctantReader New York, United States 12-05-12 Member Since 2010
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    "A Enjoyable Listen!"

    The story is of a servant who goes missing, the man who is accused of being responsible for it and the full of himself yet loveable detective who gets to the bottom of it all. From the nick only names of his staff and wife, to his love for delicious fried Indian treats Puri is very well flshed out as a character. He reminded me of someone I know in real life - right down to the step by step self congratulatory accounts of resolved cases he conveyed to his poor secretary. As the story went on, it did become predictable, but not boring, so that was a plus!
    So no it was not shockingly surprising, but it was a solid offering (I wouldnt be surprised if this author used to be a technical writer - things are so concise and tied up in the end.), with well written characters (Mummy is my fave) and I liked the Poirot-like ending with everyone gathered around in the livingroom for the revelation. I also especially enjoyed the telling of the pre marital cases he worked and was working on. I certainly plan to have another listen at this authors other works!.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sammie Bozeman, MT, United States 12-04-12
    Sammie Bozeman, MT, United States 12-04-12 Member Since 2011

    -sam

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    "Lighthearted and Funny"
    Any additional comments?

    I enjoyed the story, the characters, the atmosphere of Delhi (both old and new) and I especially enjoyed the narrator. I ordered two more Tarquin Hall books after finishing this one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    judith clemson, SC, United States 10-29-12
    judith clemson, SC, United States 10-29-12 Member Since 2011
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    "Okay, now, this is good!"

    What fun to hear. Good mystery, wonderful narration and different from anything I have ever heard. "Mama G" and family help with the detective agency as they try to live up to its humble reputation as best in India ( or the world).

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rachel MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA, United States 02-03-12
    Rachel MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA, United States 02-03-12 Member Since 2010

    part time gourmet, full time nerd

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Weak mystery wrapped in ol fashioned misogyny"
    What could Tarquin Hall have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    This is a story of an older Indian man with old fashion beliefs and extreme arrogance. He spends the entire story bragging about in intellect and ranting about the downfall of Indian culture due to sex, drugs and Western influence.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    The narrator did a good job differentiating the voices of the many characters.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    I was amused by the main character's disdain of Sherlock Holmes while the storyline is written within the same template.


    2 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Aja Garland, TX, United States 02-04-11
    Aja Garland, TX, United States 02-04-11 Member Since 2009
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    "It was just ok"

    This book was just a last minute buy, so I didn't expect much. Which is exactly what it delivered! The narrator reads with an accent and I didn't care for the Indian culture that I don't understand fully. Women are portrayed as the weak ones in this book and I frankly just didn't care for the book at all. I will not be reading any more by this author.

    1 of 12 people found this review helpful
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