Wednesday, 11 September 2019

Book Review: Kanpur Khoofiya Pvt. Ltd. by Richa S. Mukherjee

Book: Kanpur Khoofiya Pvt. Ltd.

Author: Richa S. Mukherjee

Pages: 296

Read: Paperback edition (pictured above) that was kindly sent for review by HarperCollins

Read in: 3 hours

Plot Summary: Meet Mr Prachand Tripathi, private investigator and owner of Kanpur Khoofiya Pvt Ltd. Accustomed to tracking down missing pets and cheating lovers, he is about to have his world change completely when a new case requires him to tail actress Shailaja Kapoor. 

What seems like a simple request turns into a dramatic dive into her murky past, wading through which is not going to be easy. Or safe. 

Soon Prachand and his wife, and partner against crime, Vidya, fall under the glare of the police as Shailaja Kapoor is abducted right before their eyes. Now he must put his skills to the test before they become victims at the end of a dark and dangerous game.

Things I Liked: 

1. First of all, I am a big fan of India-based original detective stories! I truly believe that we have so much masala and colour in our lives here that Indian detectives will forever have interesting cases to solve and, must, I am sure, lead very interesting and colourful lives themselves! So, when HarperCollins sent out their list of monthly titles and asked me to pick one for review, Kanpur Khoofiya Pvt. Ltd. was an obvious choice because it ticked all the boxes! A husband and wife detective team from Kanpur, who are used to tracking down missing cats and dogs and tailing cheating spouses get into a case that's way above their pay grade! What is not to love?!

2. This is a really hilarious book! Prachand Tripathi and Vidya Tripathi live in a joint family in an old neighbourhood of Kanpur in a traditional kothi complete with an angan, a cow and a cantankerous amma ji (grandmother) ruling the roost from the charpai! So, you can only imagine what happens in such a traditional, Brahmin family when the elder son, after completing his Engineering degree, announces that he is opening his own Private Detective business! Just imagine! And, you're right- much hilarity ensues!

3. I really liked the colourful characters in Prachand's family- his mother, who has newly become addicted to WhatsApp, his younger brother, who is the lead singer in a Justin Beiber fan band, his quiet, but supportive Chachu, the cantankerous amma ji, Prachand's best friend- Yatin- each and every one of them are such wonderful characters!

4. There are many laugh out loud moments in this book! The funny and weird situations that Prachand and Vidya find themselves in as well as the shenanigans inside the Tripathi house are really funny!

5. This book is about a detective, who has strong observational powers (like Sherlock) but he is also a novice. He is just starting out and the Shailja Kapoor case is a huge leap out of his comfort zone in terms of the nature of the job as well as the type of clients he has dealt with thus far. I liked that the author has shown how out-of-their-depth Prachand and Vidya are and how they gradually find their sea legs and solve the case.

Things I Didn't Like: 

1. I wish the investigation process was outlined a little bit more. A lot of things very conveniently fell into place and then suddenly the case got solved! I enjoy the process as much as the outcome and so, I felt I missed out on that.

Rating: 4/5 

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