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Flesh and Blood: Elder in love

If you love mysteries, read Flesh and Blood. The ending is an absolute stunner. The author, John Harvey, is probably better known for his Charlie Resnick novels. But here the detective is Frank Elder. Divorced and retired from the police force, he follows up an old case when one of […]

Paul Theroux on Kali and Calcutta

In A Dead Hand: A Crime in Calcutta, Paul Theroux describes an animal sacrifice at the Kali temple in Kalighat. A goat, garlanded with flowers, is led bleating into a walled enclosure to the beat of drums. Once inside, the terrified creature is thrust between two upright stakes and caressed […]

PD James’ leisurely murder mystery

The Private Patient by PD James This is an Adam Dalgliesh mystery where the Scotland Yard detective enters late into the story. And even then Commander Dalgliesh hardly occupies centrestage. The focus keeps shifting from one character to another. His subordinates, Kate Miskin and Francis Benton-Smith, duly get their turn […]

Ruth Rendell at 78

Who would believe she's 78? But that's Ruth Rendell as seen in a Telegraph profile which appeared on Sunday. The hair is dyed but she looks amazingly youthful — maybe because she exercises daily and walks and takes the train to the House of Lords, where she is a member. […]