19th century Bombay is the setting for the story. We have Captain Agnihotri a half caste as it is crudely said, just retired from the Army. We have a Parsi family the Framjis wealthy urbane and social. Friends of the British Raj and benefitting immensely from that friendship.
I have always been interested in minority communities and the Parsi's have fascinated me. This story drew me in. Even in the 19th century, they were different to the mass of Indians - very different, very far thinking, educated and elite. This gave them an edge always, (as it still does).
The Framjis have faced a double bereavement. The daughter and sister of the family in deaths deemed suicide. Adi the young husband of one and brother of the other and the family deem that there is more to the deaths and the Captain is brought in to use his skills as an ex military man to get to the bottom of things.
Crossing to Lahore and to the princely states (under the British Raj some of them) some of them independent was a precarious journey and Jim Agnihotri's enquiries obviously set the cat amongst the pigeons. Set upon, beaten up badly Jim knows that he is on the correct path but is frustrated because every person who could be a possible witness or who could give information is terrified to do so. Who is the person who is behind the terror, and what information did he have over the young ladies that he could use them to blackmail them so much.
So much history, so much drama, political machinations plus a touch of romance all set beautifully together in this story.
I will be hoping that this author will publish more and will be looking out for the books.
Sent by Minotaur Books for an unbiased review, courtesy of Netgalley.