One of the things I love most about international mysteries is the way they can breathe new life into the characters and tropes we’re already familiar with. We’ve all read mystery novels with a grizzled detective who believes the world is working against them. But what about a mystery novel in which the investigator is a female attorney struggling against the cultural expectations of her Indian city? Or a mystery involving a wealthy Maharajah who likes to play detective? Or a mystery where the Inspector is aided by a baby elephant?
Now that your interest is sufficiently piqued (because seriously, who wouldn’t want to read about a mystery-solving baby elephant?), check out this list of mystery novels featuring Indian detectives. (I’ll apologize to your TBR later.)
The Grand Raj Palace Hotel has stood as a resort for the world's elite citizens for over one hundred years, so the last thing the hotel needs is a scandal. But alas, a scandal occurs when an American billionaire is found dead in the hotel from an apparent suicide. Problem is, not everyone is convinced that the man's death is a suicide, and so Inspector Chopra and his sidekick, the baby elephant Ganesha, are called in. And what Inspector Chopra quickly realizes is that there were a lot of people at the Grand Raj Palace that wanted this billionaire dead.
Murder at the Grand Raj Palace is the fourth book in Vaseem Khan's charming and thoughtful Baby Ganesh Agency series, so if you're intrigued, make sure to check out the other three books in the series: The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra, The Perplexing Theft of the Jewel in the Crown, and The Strange Disappearance of a Bollywood Star.
Agent Santosh Wagh has been put in charge of the newly opened Mumbai branch of Private, the world's most elite detective agency, and his first case as head investigator has him on the hunt for an elusive serial killer who targets seemingly unconnected women and leaves bizarre objects at the crime scenes. And as the team races to find a lead before the next woman is killed, something inside the agency threatens to destroy it from within. Can Agent Wagh confront the demons of his past and hunt down the killer? (And if you enjoy this story, you can also check out the next part of Santosh Wagh's story in Count to Ten.)
Katie McLain is a public librarian in Illinois where she suggests books for a living. She lives in the Chicago suburbs with her fiancé and her matching black cats. Katie is a contributing editor for Book Riot and a co-host on the Read or Dead mystery podcast. Find her on Twitter @kt_librarylady.