A new Lalli mystery. Though she-s retired from the police, Lalli-s life continues to unravel through the crimes she investigates. The second title in the detective series that has taken the Indian subcontinent by storm is a Carrollian fantasy, which reveals that life in respectable Utkrusha, a multi-storeyed apartment building in suburban Mumbai, has very dark undercurrents. It-s a Carrollian summer at Utkrusha. Lalli-s flat on the second floor is no longer the haven it used to be for her niece. The staid lives of their neighbours aren-t exactly what they seem, and she-s so caught up in the dizzy whirl of events that it-s some time before she sees the fantastic pattern in their random spill. It all begins with the Adventure of the Banker-s Clerk. That is scarcely explained when they-re startled by the curious behaviour of the sister-s husband-s niece. A brief distraction is provided by a Bear Without its Head. And then the new resident meets a Rattlesnake that Questions Him in Greek. And the estranged husband gets a Letter from his Wife. After an Excursion on a Damp Night, Mr Rao encounters a most peculiar Vegetable Pill. All of which leads Lalli to consider the argument of a Bar of Mottled Soap. But it is not till the baffling incident of the Gardener-s Song that Lalli reads the Double Rule of Three.
About the Author
Kalpana Swaminathan has lived most of her life in Bombay. She finds the proximity of twelve million lives an inexhaustible source of enchantment. Her most recent novel is Bougainvillea House. Her books for children include Jaldi-s Friends, an adventure about Mumbai-s vagrant animals, written in the aftermath of 6 December 1992. Writing with Ishrat Syed as Kalpish Ratna, her articles on books and science appear in many periodicals. Their first book together is a submarine murder mystery, Dr Wrasse of Crystal Rock. They have also authored A Compendium of Family Health.