The Reluctant Detective – Book Review…


The Reluctant Detective by Kiran Manral

The title of the book is very apt – The “Reluctant” detective.

A thirty something housewife, a school gate mom and a rich, fashionable woman – that’s how Kanan Mehra, the protagonist of the book, is. This book somehow the inverse of what general book is. In general, the author becomes the character in the book. But here, the character reflects more on the life of the author itself.

Kanan Mehra was a working woman, now a full time mom to Kabir and what a normal rich woman is, an avid shopper and fashionable. Attending lunch parties and oh, not to forget the kitty parties. She stays in plush apartment and society where there are not one but two murders. Kay, being the gossip Queen (self bestowed honor) decides to solve the murder mystery of the woman who lived in the same building and of a man whom she hardly knew.

On hearing or reading the word “Detective”, you would expect some investigation, some thrilling revelations etc. But there are more parties and out station trips, kitty parties and gossiping involved. The story starts with jogging, where Kanan Mehra wears some fashionable and costly cloths, lycra or some material. The book kind of describes the author’s own life like what her son does and what she expects from spouse, what she wears and what fashion statement she makes. In between all this, the author sometimes thinks of the murders and what can be done to solve those.

But then what I felt is the book is true to its title, The “Reluctant” detective. The author being a housewife, wife to a rich man and mom to a brat (that’s how she addresses her son) it’s obvious that the book talks about fashion, cloths, make up, kitty parties, zero figure, lunches, expectations from spouse etc. So I think the author (Kiran Manral) has done quite a good job. Her fashion vocabulary is something a girl will like to go through and have.

The book could have been better, had the author tried to reduce the daily make-up and getting ready, what to wear and what to say things and included more of some “real” investigation in the story line. I mean, before going to trip (Kay Mehra and family goes for a trip in between) the murder is a mystery and after coming back from the trip, just after 2 days, the murder mystery is mysteriously solved. That part doesn’t add up pretty much.

Overall, the book is good read for those who like the fashion world, girls especially. And okay read in general.

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