Book review: 'The Bangalore Detectives Club' - Elite membership!

the latest tech news, global tech news daily, tech news today, startups, usa tech, asia tech, china tech, eu tech, global tech, in-depth electronics reviews, 24h tech news, 24h tech news, top mobile apps, tech news daily, gaming hardware, big tech news, useful technology tips, expert interviews, reporting on the business of technology, venture capital funding, programing language

The novel is set in Bengaluru in the 1920s. (Image from the Macnabb Collection via Wikimedia Commons)

A book with a vibrant cover, a lady sleuth who plays Ms Marple (though a much younger version), Bangalore in the early 20th century, an expertly crafted plot, detailed depiction of patriarchy, caste and class – all woven into a beautiful story is The Bangalore Detectives Club!

the latest tech news, global tech news daily, tech news today, startups, usa tech, asia tech, china tech, eu tech, global tech, in-depth electronics reviews, 24h tech news, 24h tech news, top mobile apps, tech news daily, gaming hardware, big tech news, useful technology tips, expert interviews, reporting on the business of technology, venture capital funding, programing language

Author Harini Nagendra has not just brought out her prowess for words and information, but has moved out of her regular narrative to a style that overwhelms you with murder and mayhem!

#Book review, #books, #harini nagendra, #the bangalore detective club
I loved the book as soon as I opened it to the old Bangalore map. Our city, as a part of the princely state of Mysore. Harini wastes no time in making me a member of the club at this stage itself. And then it’s a roller coaster ride with the Kaveri family (yes, I will call it after the female protagonist!).

Global Tech News Daily

Kaveri and Ramu are a young couple, figuring themselves and their lives out, as they figure the unsolvable mystery of a murder in the vast lawns of the Century Club. Kaveri is infectious. She grows on you – is it the name, I wonder! Young, alive, active, agile, able, swift, scheming, conniving, plotting, challenging, empathetic, loving, caring, daring, doting – that’s our Kaveri!

Every page you turn in the book, you get closer to the couple and their surroundings, their families and their culture. As a storyline, Kaveri and Ramu are a young couple in Bangalore of the 1920s – wealthy, privileged and connected. In fact Ramu’s father is one of the founding members of the Century Club! On a pleasant evening (all evenings are usually pleasant in Namma Bangaluru), while they dine with Ramu’s colleagues from the Bowring hospital in the lawns of Century Club, a murderer from among them strikes. Ponnuswamy, a pimp from the Halasuru area, is murdered by a harsh blow on his head. A suspect goes missing, another falls prey to a life-threatening attack and a witness is attempted to be silenced! Kaveri follows the trail at every step and finally does get ahead of the murderer. It’s wonderful the chemistry she shares with the investigating officer Ismail and the duo quote Sherlock one too many times – “When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.”

Global Tech News Daily

A rapid chase to the murderer, through intense emotions, tears, anger and resilience all rolled into one Kaveri. She explores the city through the murder investigation and finally has a narrow escape herself at the end. Through this journey she starts alone, but soon has many join her club, whether it is Uma aunty next door, Ismail the officer, Mala who is framed for murder or Ramu, her proud doctor husband, they are all in it together.

The last few pages were a delight! The Kaveri’s dictionary and Kaveri’s Adventures in the Kitchen really speak of the level at which Harini is connected with her character. In some sense, it reminded me of how Agatha Christie was connected with Hercule Poirot.

I was super excited to see the start of the book with a quote from my favourite Agatha Christie murder mystery, The Mysterious Affair at Styles: “Instinct is a marvellous thing. It can neither be explained nor ignored.” Like that moved a big needle for Christie, this too has high potential to do something significant for Harini.

Cut to the chase, let me review the book on the feminist connect for the reader. A brahmin lady dressed in traditional nine-yard brings an immediate connect to women of a certain class and background. That is the family of Kaveri.

Harini has tried to bring out gendered roles and status of women, but has also brought out intersectionalities of caste, class, religion, occupations (sex workers like Mala) and more. Strong reference to gendered roles post marriage – example, good married women will not do many things like wear a clingy wet garment, regular references to being the “wife of a respectable doctor”, married women should know their place or later when Kaveri and Ramu laugh at how their mothers would react if they knew that Ramu makes coffee for his wife.

There are classic references to various aspects of girls not being the owners of their bodies, how lives change after marriage, child marriage being an accepted fate for millions of girls, consent not even a part of the vocabulary of those days and irreverent comments like the height of a girl says a lot about her! Kaveri herself breaks these boundaries and stereotypes meticulously. From sneakily starting to study math (and remember girls are not supposed to be good at math!) to starting to learn swimming, getting herself swimwear, sleeveless clothes, learning to drive their car, visiting the house of a sex worker, breaking caste-based stereotypes and then fully being involved and solving the mystery of that period – she is a legend personified to perfection! She not only read the newspaper every day, but also had strong political views on the British Raj and applies to join the Indian National Congress. I loved the way she tells Ramu, her husband, to have her back when “she” asks for it!

Issues of social stigma like caste and caste-based occupations like sex work have also been highlighted well and how patriarchy penetrates like a dagger everywhere. “Respectable women from good families will have very little chance to know prostitutes, though respectable men from the good families will have a lot to do with them!” Harini nailed it here!

Harini has dealt with Kaveri well and that’s very understandable. What I like even more is the way she has brought out the maturity of the character of Ramu. A well-to-do doctor, young, handsome, dominant caste and class is his background, he genuinely loves his wife and wants her to be happy. In this process he is able to deal with a lot of stereotypes he had built in his mind. Example, when he comes to know that Kaveri is very excited to be a part of the investigation in her own way, he does not stop her. He encourages her to learn to swim and drive his car, and sees no reason to hang his ego flimsily on Kaveri’s clothes! His response to Swamy, a neighbour, is classic: “Try being nice to your wife for a change. See what a difference it makes to your life!” Very well said Harini – but do they make many men like Ramu, or are they all in books of feminist writers who need to create them for their own pleasure?!

Harini overall has presented to us a new way of life in today’s complex and controversial Bangalore. She has said that our city of the 1920s and the people were willing to learn for change and so should we. She has brought references to Bangalore being a large city but caste, job and family status came in the way of everything – yet her characters were able to move from their spaces of bias to a space of fraternity. I can’t help but say that Harini has fallen in love with Kaveri. She has made her own dream woman of those days come to life through Kaveri’s character. Just the way she describes her, the way she made her good at math, sleuthing, planning, empathetic, being able to give back, manipulative when required – too good!

While Harini has made Kaveri the epitome of who a woman is, she has done the exact opposite to Daphne and brought a tint of British insensitivities to her. I wonder why she picked Daphne and not her husband to showcase this trait, and this is something I would love to hear from the author herself.

Overall, a masterpiece, definitely a series to watch out for “A Kaveri and Ramu Mystery” is a full and full Kaveri mystery with a supportive Ramu. A club that will only take a full, sensitive human into its membership – this being elite in today’s India!

News Related


Meta laid her off just days before she was due to join. See her viral post

Meta, the parent company of Facebook, posted its slowest revenue growth in years. In a widely-shared LinkedIn post, Stephanie Washington has recounted how Meta, the parent company of Facebook, laid ... Read more »

Storyboard18 | Moms in Adland: The conflict between motherhood and work life is a reality

Being a mom is a natural progression and not an interruption. (Image: Harry Cao via Unsplash) Many of my team apparently refer to me as “Maa”. The jury is out ... Read more »

Who is Vladimir Putin's rumoured girlfriend Alina Kabaeva

Russia-Ukraine war: Vladimir Putin’s inner circle is under global scrutiny. Former Russian gymnast Alina Kabaeva, rumoured to be President Vladimir Putin’s girlfriend, could be targeted with sanctions. The European Union ... Read more »

Kerala Travel Mart: Caravans, river lodges among ideas to revive tourism in the state

The next Champions Boat League is slated for November 2022. A row of brightly coloured caravans is parked across an empty dock at the Kochi port in the human-made, nearly century-old Willingdon ... Read more »

Happy Mother's Day 2022: Wishes, images, greetings and quotes to share with mom

Mother’s Day: Wish your mom on the occasion of Mother’s Day with a sweet card. Mother’s Day is a good day to remind your mum how important she is to ... Read more »

Amazon driver leaves touching message for girl battling cancer. Jeff Bezos reacts

Jeff Bezos shared a shout-out for Asani Anderson (Image credit: TeamAubreyHope/Facebook, AFP) Amazon founder Jeff Bezos gave a shout-out to an employee who went viral for a small act of ... Read more »

Watch: World's highest tea party on Everest at a dizzying 21,312 feet

The video left social media users fascinated. (Screengrab from video posted on Instagram by Guinness World Records) This will certainly beat the experience of any high tea you have ever ... Read more »

Microsoft working on Xbox Streaming device that will reportedly release next year

(Image Courtesy: Microsoft) New reports suggest that Microsoft will release a streaming device and an app for internet-connected TVs, that allows users, to play their Xbox Game Pass titles on ... Read more »

Harshvardhan Kapoor: "'Thar' is the most difficult role I have played"

Harshvardhan Kapoor in ‘Thar’, which released on May 6, 2022. (Image: Netflix) In Harshvardhan Kapoor’s fifth film, Thar, which just released on Netflix, the 31-year-old actor also took on the ... Read more »

Monkeys ran away with evidence in murder case, Rajasthan cops tell court

Cops have said that monkeys stole a bag of evidence in Jaipur (Representative Image) Police in Rajasthan have said that keys pieces of evidence in a murder trial have gone ... Read more »

Sri Lanka crisis: Protests continue, calls grow for resignation of Rajapaksa brothers

Sri Lankan Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa is facing renewed pressure to quit amid the country’s crippling economic crisis, news agency PTI has reported. Government sources said that at a cabinet ... Read more »

Saani Kaayidham review: Keerthy Suresh excels in this predictable revenge drama

Keerthy Suresh as Ponni in the violent revenge drama ‘Saani Kaayidham’. (Image: Screen grab/Amazon Prime Video) Given that this movie is directed by Arun Matheswaran, who directed Rocky, there are ... Read more »

Facebook will discontinue two location-based features on May 31

Representative Image Facebook has started sending notices to users that it will discontinue two of its location-based features—Nearby Friends, which allows a user to track and share their location with ... Read more »

Puliyogre tamarind rice: journey from temple prasad to the main dish at a Bengaluru eatery

A key component in this puliyogare is gojju, made with tamarind pulp and spices. (Photo: Jayanthi Madhukar) Dark, fiery, and with a hint of sweetness – this is quite a ... Read more »

Watch: Punches fly as brawl erupts on flight. Shocking video is viral

A group of men was seen fighting on board a KLM flight (Image: MayaWilkinsonx/Twitter) A fight broke out between passengers on a KLM Royal Dutch Airlines flight from Manchester to ... Read more »

Farhan Akhtar to appear in Marvel's new superhero series

The details of Farhan Akhtar’s character in Ms Marvel have not been revealed yet. Actor-filmmaker Farhan Akhtar will be making an appearance in Ms Marvel, the first Muslim superhero series ... Read more »

Did Imran Khan inadvertently compare himself to a donkey? Watch viral video

Imran Khan, born in Lahore, spent a part of his childhood in England (Image: Imran Khan/YouTube) A clip of former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan describing life in the United ... Read more »

As cylinders get dearer, Twitter users express frustration with memes

Indians are struggling with the rise in prices of several essential commodities, ranging from fuel to vegetables. Indians woke up today to the news of another hike in the prices ... Read more »

Storyboard18 | Bookstrapping: ‘Selling' isn't just for salespeople

Hoffeld brings back the concept of ‘Antifragile, pioneered by Nassim Nicolas Taleb. (Representational image: Oc Gonzalez via Unsplash) Sell More with Science: The Mindsets, Traits, and Behaviors That Create Sales ... Read more »

Met Gala madness to IPL craze: Summing up the week with hilarious memes

This week began with a bang as the Met Gala returned to New York in all its gilded glory. Kylie Jenner’s Met Gala 2022 look became the subject of several ... Read more »

The Beatles Bungalow in Rishikesh: award-winning photographer captures the decaying home in a shot at immortality

Interior of Maharishi’s Ashram, which The Beatles visited in 1968 – this photo is part of Beatles Bungalow exhibition by photographer Michael Donald. Sometimes, decay, not restoration, may be the ... Read more »

Book excerpt: Soli Sorabjee: Life and Times by Abhinav Chandrachud | Tamas and the case for free speech

Soli Sorabjee was Attorney General of India from 1989-90 and 1998-2004. Padma Vibhushan Soli Sorabjee, former Attorney General of India, died on April 30, 2021. A new biography by Abhinav Chandrachud ... Read more »

Watch: What is 'space jellyfish', that lit up the sky in Florida

(Image credit: @samwell224/Twitter) The residents of Florida were treated to a stunning sight on Friday as SpaceX’s Falcon rocket launched 53 internet satellites from the Kennedy Space Center before sunrise. ... Read more »

The last days of Roger Federer and other artists

Switzerland’s Roger Federer leaves the court after being defeated by Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz during the men’s singles quarterfinals match on day nine of the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London, Wednesday, ... Read more »

Rabindranath Tagore birth anniversary: 10 profound quotes of the Nobel laureate

Rabindranath Tagore Jayanti 2022: Read deep words of unimaginable beauty from the literary great. Rabindranath Tagore, one of India’s greatest literary personalities, was born on May 7 in Kolkata in ... Read more »

Because I'm happy...

Community means everything when it comes to mental health and happiness. (Representational image: Phil Nguyen via Pexels) What we think will make us happy: Money, fame, more money, more fame… ... Read more »

My Family and Other Globalizers | Practicing motherhood on cats

Animals love unconditionally and listen without judgement. They’ve been shown to decrease stress and loneliness, while helping kids gain empathy and learn responsibility. (Representational image: Dorothea Oldani via Unsplash) I ... Read more »

The Paradox of Celebrity Tequila

In June 2017, George Clooney and Rande Gerber (a.k.a., the spouse of Cindy Crawford) sold their tequila company, Casamigos, for $1 billion. Founded by the pair in 2013, the company ... Read more »

Billionaire Investor Warns U.S. Economy Could Face 'Serious Problems' If Fed Doesn't Hike Rates Within the Year

Following the Fed’s move to raise interest rates by 50-basis points at the Federal Open Market Committee meeting on Wednesday, Equity Group Investments chairman and founder Sam Zell voiced cautious ... Read more »

SpaceX Dragon Capsule Splashes Down Safely After 6 Months in Orbit, But the Mission Got Off to a Harrowing Start

SpaceX’s Crew Dragon Endurance splashed down off the coast of Tampa early this morning, per NASA, bringing crew members safely back to Earth after almost six months in orbit following a mission ... Read more »

Jail time for passenger who had to be duct-taped after groping flight crew

A Frontier Airlines passenger was handed jail time for groping and assaulting crew. (Image: flyfrontier/Facebook) A Frontier Airlines passenger who had to be duct-taped to his seat for groping airline ... Read more »

Do You Have What It Takes to Join Elon Musk's Team? Your Answer to This Question and 12 Others From the World's Most Influential Leaders Will Reveal Your Potential (or Lack Thereof)

“You’re standing on the surface of the Earth. You walk one mile south, one mile west, and one mile north. You end up exactly where you started. Where are you?” ... Read more »

Shah Rukh Khan hosts diplomats at Mannat. See pics from high-profile afternoon

Shah Rukh Khan hosted a gathering for diplomats at his home in Mumbai (Image: DiedrahKelly/Twitter) Shah Rukh Khan hosted a group of international diplomats at Mumbai home recently. Pictures from ... Read more »

Storyboard18 | Is Goafest still relevant?

Goafest and the Abby Awards are back after a gap of three years. (Image: Lance Asper via Unsplash) Yes, Goafest Is Back: Ajay Kakar, chief marketing officer, Aditya Birla Capital, ... Read more »

Lakshmi Venu Appointed MD Of Sundaram Clayton

Lakshmi Venu, daughter of industry veteran Venu Srinivasan, has taken over as the managing director of Sundaram-Clayton (SCL), a TVS Group company. Company website Prior to taking up the new ... Read more »

Viral video shows woman pinned down, forced to take Covid test in China

A woman is forcibly administered a Covid test in China (Image: S7i5FV0JOz6sV3A/Twitter) As China scrambles to contain a resurgence in Covid cases, disturbing visuals that have emerged online show health ... Read more »

Mother's Day 2022: These ads will make you want to call your mom right away

(Representative Illustration) Mother’s Day is just around the corner and this is the time most brands go all out with their Mother’s Day Campaign. This year’s campaigns have been quite ... Read more »

Twitter is testing conversation cards for Spaces

(Image Courtesy: Twitter) Twitter is testing a new feature for Spaces, its competitor to live audio rooms from Clubhouse, that allows listeners to engage in conversations in a simpler manner. Also Read: Musk ... Read more »

Photos of blood-splattered furniture surface in Johnny Depp-Amber Heard trial

The Johnny Depp-Amber Heard trial began in Virginia in April Amber Heard shared more details of Johnny Depp’s alleged abuse on her second day of testimony in their ongoing, highly-publicised ... Read more »

Life as Shah Rukh Khan's lookalike is not easy: ‘I got swamped, had to call police'

Ibrahim Qadri looks uncannily like Shah Rukh Khan (Image: humansofbombay/Instagram) Life as the doppelganger of India’s biggest star cannot be easy – ask Ibrahim Qadri, who bears an uncanny resemblance ... Read more »