Title: The Rossogolla Murders
Author: Debeshi Gooptu
Price: Rs 215
No of pages: 169
Link for purchase: The Rossogolla Murders
Publisher: Notion Press
A retired judge drops dead at a swish party in Kolkata.
The needle of suspicion points to Punjabi mirchi Dolly Luthra.
Now it’s up to her friend, the strait-laced Mrinalini Sen, to don the detective’s hat and clear Dolly’s name.
Easier said than done when bodies start piling up and there’s a crafty killer on the loose.
Will the two be able to put their differences aside and solve the murders?
I love books in the thriller/suspense genre and have in fact written a couple of them myself. I found Debeshi Gooptu’s ‘The Rossogolla Murders’ refreshingly different from the run-of-the-mill whodunits which we come across so often nowadays. The first thing I noticed was that despite injecting a consistent dose of humor throughout the book, the author manages to keep the thrills and chills intact. This is a very difficult thing to accomplish and I really commend the author for managing it so well. The book begins at a low key, but it quickly picks up speed and after reaching the midway point it becomes really unputdownable. The characterization is very good and I for one liked the character of Dolly Luthra the most. Dolly’s comments and antics manage to bring a smile to your lips. The main protagonist Mrinalini Sen aka Mrini is a more serious sort of person as befits someone who investigates a crime. The two of them complement each other very well.
The mystery involves a judge dropping dead after tasting a Chilli Rossogolla at a party and suspicion immediately falls on Dolly Luthra. Mrini, though exasperated by Dolly, has no choice but to play detective and solve the crime to prove her friend innocent. The mild low-key romantic interlude between Inspector Satyajit Saha and Mrini is a very nice distraction. The two friends steadily follow a set of clues that lead them towards the criminal. In the process of solving the crime, the two of them keep getting in the way of the police and Inspector Saha warns them of the dangers involved. But that hardly deters Mrini and Dolly. I really loved the ending and when the motive behind the crimes was revealed I was really taken by surprise.
The book is written in impeccable language and is also edited well. The plot is well thought out and there are quite a few ‘edge of the seat’ moments in the book. I would like to add a word about the title. It is a quaint title to use for a thriller. It indicates just what the book is; a thriller peppered with dry humor and wit throughout. The book is just 169 pages long, and the author has managed to keep the story moving fast. Debeshi Gooptu is an extremely talented writer, and this is the first book of hers I am reading. I am already a fan of hers.
I have mentioned quite a few positives but there are a few places where I wished the humor would not interfere with the seriousness of the situation. This might sound like nit-picking but just in one or two places I found that the dry humor interferes with the creepiness, or the fear factor the event or situation invokes. It would have been better if the humor had been downplayed in these areas. But then again that is precisely what makes this book so entertaining, enjoyable, and different. All said and done, it is an extremely well-written and thoroughly enjoyable book.
A big yay! This book is a fast-paced witty thriller and I do urge you to pick it up. It is eminently enjoyable!
I am going with a 4.5/5 for Debeshi Gooptu’s ‘The Rossogolla Murders’. I have cut off 0.5 points for the few negatives I have mentioned above.
This book is written as part of the Blogchatter Book Review Program