30.9.13

RAGTIME IN SIMLA, by Barbara Cleverly

2/series. Finding a series I like that's been running for over a decade is always a treat for me, as it means I can gobble them all up in one big banquet. And this one is absolutely delicious, chock full of authentic detail of an exotic setting, and with an intricate plot that turns up surprise after surprise. Set just after The Great War, in 1919, veteran of the bloody Flanders trenches Joe Sandilands, now a Scotland Yard Inspector, is induced to visit India.
Arriving in the summer capital of the British Raj, Simla, his companion in Sandilands' private car is murdered: two perfect shots to the chest. Why was the Russian opera tenor killed? Is it linked to a previous murder in the same spot several years before? No spoilers...you'll just have to read the novel. But read #1 first: The Last Kashmiri Rose. This one, #2, is a 4.5. Cleverly is clever!