The Inugami Curse - A dramatic murder mystery that will keep you turning the pages!

 



The mighty patriarch of the Inugami clan passed away, and left behind a will and testament of his last wishes on how the estate and property should be distributed among his daughters, grand-daughters and grandsons. And this will is twisted beyond anyone's expectations and imagination - which would lead to a series of murders, elaborately staged ones with tricky messages. And all is a riddle till our detective Kosuke Kindaichi - solves it. The story is based in 1950s Japan, in a small village, in a rich sprawling household of the Inugamis. What adds to the charm is the Japanese culture in the tale - tatami mats rooms with sliding doors, chrysanthemum dolls and gardens, and a kimono wearing detective. 

The novel is fast paced, presenting amazing dramatic twists and turns in every chapter. There are many characters, each with a unique past- an intriguing story of his own - even the deceased Sahei Inugami. He was the most successful businessman in entire Japan, who had managed to grow his silk industries manifold through several wars in 1950s. His three mistresses, three daughters and son-in-laws who have taken up the Inugami family surname,  four grandchildren, and an illegitimate son somewhere and the granddaughter of the monk of the old shrine whom he had adopted - all contest for place in the will. But even the reading of the will has strange conditions. Added to all these complicated plotlines there's a masked man - who doesn't reveal his face for its burnt and destroyed almost in the war. When you join the scattered dots that the story presents, slowly and steadily guessing who the elusive murderer is, you are in for a treat. The guessing game here was the most interesting. I was thrilled to join those dots, and make calculated deductions about the - 'ax, zither and chrysanthemum'.

It reads like an Agatha Christie novel - which is not at all dark - though there are murders involved - but focuses on solving the impossible riddle that the case is. And the detective is a character in himself - scratching his head and stammering when he's excited - almost a Sherlock Holmes of sorts. Unusual and memorable. I finished reading the novel in three days - a total of 5-6 hours. If you are a fast reader you can complete it within a single sitting. And it was so satisfying - you can actually join the dots - at least some part of it. It is the best mystery novel I have read in recent times. 

Do suggest me more - mystery, detective, psychological thriller, etc.

This post is a part of Blogchatter Half Marathon.  

Comments

  1. Nice review. I love Japanese mystery stories and this one from your review is definitely worth a try. I can recommend books by Keigo Higashino. Particularly Salvation of a Saint. You can try that.

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  2. Your book reviews are all very well executed. This one especially is detailed. The book sounds gorgeous.

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Queeristan by Parmesh Sahani

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  Queeristan (Amazon Link) Thanks to Audible Free Trial I listened to this amazing non-fiction on LGBTQ inclusion in Indian workplaces. Author Parmesh Sahani identifies as gay Indian, working closely with Godrej higher management and employees for years to create an inclusive workplace, both legally and in spirit. This book is a result of those years of experience, research, collaboration with individuals from difference spectrum of the society and organizations who has successfully transitioned into a queer friendly one.   Indian history is inclusive. From the Khajuraho temple architectures, to Konark to the Rig Veda, there is existing proofs even 2000 years ago of Indian inclusiveness of queer. It’s the draconian British law that criminalised it, which was scraped in 2009, came into effect once again following a sad judgement in 2013 and eventually was scraped off for good in 2018. I am in awe of the lawyers who fought this legal battle- colleagues and partners – Arundhati Katju

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