Another week has gone by (two actually, since I missed posting last week), and it’s time again for Shelf Control. Shelf Control is a feature I’ve borrowed from Lisa at Bookshelf Fantasies, and is all about celebrating the books on your TBR pile. To participate, simply pick a book from your TBR pile and write a post about it.

This week, my twentieth time participating, my pick is once again, a historical mystery (these have featured in a few of my earlier posts under this feature here, here, and here). And it is:


A Murder on Malabar Hill is the first in a series of historical mysteries set in 1920s Bombay (it was that then). This features the “intrepid, intelligent and young Perveen Mistry”, who is one of India’s first female lawyers. Working in her father’s firm, she comes across the case of the will of one Omar Farid, a wealthy mill owner, whose three widows stand to get disinherited by a curious provision. Farid’s widows live in seclusion and have no contact with the outside world. It falls to Perveen to investigate the matter, which soon becomes a case involving murder and grave danger to her own life.

Where and When I got it: I have a paperback copy published by Penguin India in 2018. I bought this a few months ago, and it is a copy I ordered online.

Why I want to read it: I’ve been hearing really good things about this one. This is based on two of India’s early women lawyers, Cornelia Sorabji, and Mithan Tata Lam, which I found very interesting. Also, while it is a mystery, it is also about Bombay during that time, and the kind of situations these ladies would have faced in their day, which interests me even more. And, in case you didn’t know already, history + mystery is one of my favourite combinations!!! I plan to read this book only next year as a book group that I am part of is reading it then (and if I read it sooner, I’ll probably forget everything by the time the discussion comes up). The second book in the series will also be out early next year. ARCs are doing the rounds, as I noticed on booktube.

A little about the author: Sujata Massey is an award-winning mystery writer born in England, and who grew up in the States. She has lived in Japan, where she began writing the first novel in her Rei Shimura series, winner of the Agatha and Macavity Awards.

Have you read this one or anything else by the author? What did you think of it? (My mother loved this one, father didn’t.) Any similar titles or series you’d recommend? Looking forward to hearing about them!




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