Inspector Singh by Shamini Flint

>> Thursday, May 13, 2010

OK, I'll start by declaring - one of my favourite fiction genre is whodunits. A whodunit or whodunnit (for "Who done it?") is a complex, plot-driven variety of the detective story in which the puzzle is the main feature of interest. The reader is provided with clues from which the identity of the perpetrator of the crime may be deduced before the solution is revealed in the final pages of the book. The investigation is usually conducted by an eccentric amateur or semi-professional detective. From Wikipedia.

My favourite author for this genre is Agatha Christie, surprise surprise. This Inspector Singh series written Shamini Flint belongs to this genre. I’ve been curious and eager to read this book since I heard about it last year. I’ve just finished reading the first book, A Most Peculiar Malaysian Murder, thanks to a friend’s friend who generously lent it to me. My verdict – good! Here’s the blurb:

Inspector Singh is in a bad mood. He’s been sent from his home in Singapore to Kuala Lumpur to solve a murder that has him stumped. Chelsea Liew - the famous Singaporean model - is on death row for the murder of her ex-husband. She swears she didn’t do it, he thinks she didn’t do it, but no matter how hard he tries to get to the bottom of things, he still arrives back at the same place - that Chelsea’s husband was shot at point blank range, and that Chelsea had the best motivation to pull the trigger: he was taking her kids away from her. Now Inspector Singh must pull out all the stops to crack a crime that could potentially free a beautiful and innocent woman and reunite a mother with her children. There’s just one problem - the Malaysian police refuse to play ball?

Image source

The fact that the book is using a local scene works two ways. It’s interesting in the sense that many things mentioned in the book are familiar or something I can relate to. But at the same time, I could get defensive as well, on the nation and religion pride. In the book A Most Peculiar Malaysian Murder for example, the man who whose murder was being investigated, was in the middle of a custody battle with his divorced wife. In a (supposed legal) twist, he was presented in the court to have converted to Islam, and the wife claims that the conversion is not genuine, just a plot to win the custody. The religion card can be a bit sensitive naturally, but I try to keep an open mind. And to be honest, I do feel that the author was fair when writing about Malaysia and its laws and enforcement.

I think the story is convincing and believable, and the author has managed to insert light moments and humour that created an entertaining read. In short, I’ve enjoyed reading it and I look forward to reading the next books in the series: A Bali Conspiracy Most Foul and The Singapore School of Villainy. I wonder where the next book will take place in?


A Bookaholic May 14, 2010 at 12:12 AM  

heyaaa! woww another fellow bookaholic! maybe we shd do a 'get together' some time! :) Or we can meet each other at the clearance sales! haha :) Cheers! Love what you're doing! ;)

Siti May 14, 2010 at 2:28 AM  

hi!! thanks for dropping by :)
i'm just starting out.. i have a personal blog and write about books occasionally, finally i decided to just split and have a book blog on its own :)
will link you up!

knv May 16, 2010 at 6:36 AM  

wahhh... you are really diversified! :D

drwati May 19, 2010 at 11:40 AM  

haaa aku pun dah lama ingat nak baca inspector singh ni tapi tak beli lagi

Siti May 19, 2010 at 6:40 PM  

dah dedicate satu post to respond to that hehe..

singapore author tp jauh gi publish kat uk nun.. kalau terjumpa bacalah, menarik gak, sbb local setting.

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