In an attempt to solidify England’s colonial rule, Prince Edward VIII visits Bombay in 1921. During a parade, a student, Freny Cuttingmaster, the daughter of a tailor, is murdered. Massey’s indomitable main character, lawyer Perveen Mistry, investigates. In strict Parsis culture where a family’s reputation is everything and a daughter’s perceived flaws can destroy that standing, Cuttingmaster’s death becomes embroiled in Bombay’s increasingly violent independence movement. The prince’s visit has also returned someone to Mistry’s life that she’d decided never to see again. Mistry charges into both matters with her usual pointed but restrained anger toward India’s patriarchy and colonial rule. Massey’s lush descriptions and rich historical details are transporting.
Soho Crime, $27.95