Books to look out for this week


The Killings at Kingfisher Hill: The New Hercule Poirot Mystery

Sophie Hannah

HarperCollins, Rs 319

Hercule Poirot— Agatha Christie’s legendary fictional creation— returns to solve a fiendish new mystery. Poirot is travelling by luxury passenger coach from London to the exclusive Kingfisher Hill estate, where Richard Devonport has summoned him to prove that his fiancée, Helen, is innocent of the murder of his brother, Frank. But Poirot must conceal his true reason for being there. The coach is forced to stop when a distressed woman demands to get off, insisting she will be murdered if she stays. No one is harmed but his curiosity is aroused and later a body is discovered with a macabre note attached.

 The Heart Asks Pleasure First

 Karuna Ezara Parikh

Pan Macmillan India, Rs 699.00

It is 2001 and Daya and Aaftab have just met in a park in Cardiff. She is studying ballet and he is practising in a law firm. She falls madly in love. He does, but he also cannot, because he is Muslim and there are certain rules. Set in a world of students, Karuna Ezara Parikh sets up a dazzling framework of impossible, forbidden love, difficult joyous friendship, as she delves into migration, Islamophobia and jihad in the wake of a cataclysmic terror event that will have dangerous ramifications the world over. Brilliantly crafted, this magical first novel reveals with great power and grace both the agony and the ecstasy of being human.

Chandra Shekhar and the six months that saved India

Roderick Matthews

HarperCollins, Rs 699

India’s 8th Prime Minister Chandra Shekhar took charge at a difficult moment in the country’s history. Chandra Shekhar headed a minority government of a breakaway faction of the Janata Dal with outside support from the Congress as a stop-gap arrangement to delay elections. The Indian economy was in a shambles, with his government having to authorise the mortgaging of gold to avoid default of payment. Rajiv Gandhi pulled the rug from under its feet, leading to its fall in just six months, before his assassination. This book looks at his pivotal role in the transition of power at a decisive juncture and the lessons his tenure holds.

Calcuttascape: Musings of a Globetrotter

Sundeep Bhutoria

Pan Macmillan India, 499.00

The book Calcuttascape grew out of the regular blogs written by Sundeep Bhutoria and his weekly column ‘Cityscape’ for a newspaper in Kolkata. The writer criss-crosses the world on business and leisure, but his heart resides in his hometown, Kolkata. With characteristic wit and disarming plain-speak, he writes about travel, food, customer services, lifestyle, art, heritage, environment and gender equality. A keen eye for detail and with a firm finger on the pulse of a city, this is an ode to the cosmopolitanism that sits at the very heart of Kolkata, even as it minces no words to point out some shortcomings.